With the publicity surrounding the performance of our young people at GCSE and A level, it occurred to me that Ian Paisley Jnr could well benefit from some extra tuition in two school subjects — English and history.
English because Ian has a problem with the meaning of language. When he said in the past that he ‘knew of’ Mr Sweeney, he did not seem to be aware that this gives the impression that he had heard of this gentleman, not that he knew him personally. As it turned out, he later had to concede that this was not the case.
When he recently advocated that dissidents should be ‘shot on sight’, he seemed not to understand that this clearly means that if a suspect is seen, he or she should be shot. In subsequent interviews he claimed that he meant something different.
History because Ian has not learned the clear lesson that creating martyrs has consistently proved to be counter productive, making the situation worse. One has only to look at events in our recent past and the impact of the execution of the 1916 leaders to see that this is the case.
So Ian Jnr has some way to go before he could achieve top grades in these subjects.