Belfast Telegraph

McCartney sisters' fury justified

Editor's Viewpoint

It is not difficult to understand the anger of the McCartney sisters in reacting to Saturday's Irish News advertisement headlined 'Doing Justice To The Memory of Jock Davison', the former IRA commander who was gunned down on a Belfast street last week.

That anger will be shared by many people, as well as the McCartney family. It was particularly nauseating to discover that the organisation calling itself Relatives for Justice lent its name to the advertisement which was signed by more than 60 groups, many of them publicly funded.

Some of these are groups never have any problem in complaining noisily about cuts and austerity measures, yet they apparently have money to fund an advert which pays tribute to a man who was known to have been a senior figure for years in the IRA in Belfast.

Catherine McCartney has rightly stated in today's Belfast Telegraph, "it is utterly inappropriate that community groups, particularly those representing women and children, are honouring someone who brought death and destruction into the lives of women and children across this city".

Questions need to be asked about the way in which some of these groups obtained funds for the advert.

Were they using taxpayers' money, and if so, how do they explain the rationale behind that kind of behaviour when they are accounting for their expenditure?

One of the noticeable developments following Jock Davison's death is the number of respected media correspondents, and others, who have not pulled punches about the fearful control held by this paramilitary leader in his prime.

It is therefore all the more understandable that Paula Bradshaw, the Alliance election candidate in South Belfast, outraged the McCartney sisters when she described Jock Davison as "a committed worker", and that "what he did before that in his past is for others to comment upon".

It is no wonder that Catherine McCartney has stated in today's Belfast Telegraph that Paula Bradshaw's "crass comment illustrates how badly victims are treated in Northern Ireland".

Few people will quarrel with that.

The further pain inflicted upon the McCartney sisters, with the utter crassness of the whole venture of placing an advert in the Irish News, is almost beyond words.

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph