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McCrea shows way by speaking the truth

I applaud the leadership shown by Basil McCrea in speaking the truth that other senior unionist politicians dare not tell (Comment, January 21).

The Good Friday/Belfast Agreement is the only show in town and a model for divided societies everywhere. It is misleading to pretend to one's followers that you can undo, or undermine, the agreement.

Partnership in government, parity of esteem, valuing the British identity, the Irish identity and other identities that have arrived in recent years is the political reality of modern Northern Ireland.

Parties that suggest that a single-identity Northern Ireland is possible may be telling some voters what they want to hear.

Parties that suggest that a return to any form of majority rule is even desirable are pandering to an unrealistic dream for the past.

The Good Friday/Belfast Agreement requires unionists to respect the Irish identity, republicans to respect the British identity and everyone to respect all other minority identities.

As Basil McCrea said, the challenges facing our society are health inequalities, educational underachievement, unemployment, housing and helping people to gain the skills to compete in a global marketplace.

Wanting to fly your flag only, opposing somebody else's language or refusing to co-ordinate the development of tourism across Ireland are the old politics. We can do better.


Down District Council

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