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Nelson should acknowledge men of enlightenment

Nelson McCausland (DebateNI, Jan 8) seems to be annoyed that the red and green front use human rights legislation to call to account the instruments of the State.

A calling to account that is effective, unlike the unionist family who have singularly failed, on any occasion, to effect accountability for a greater human rights deprivation endured by the people they claim to speak for.

Here Nelson goes again, espousing gratitude for the Magna Carta. What a great pity it was an agreement forced into existence at the point of a sword for the benefit of a ruling elite.

There was no utilitarian desire, no general good.

No, it was all about their own self-interest, with no thought for the common man.

I can see the attraction for the unionist family - self-serving, controlling, all for the benefit of those who have.

The common man was only there for their vote at election time. Then Nelson rolls out the glorious and illustrious William of Orange, who was so concerned with the rights of the people that he duly enabled the Test Act, which discriminated against Irish Presbyterians in education, civil service employment, religious practice, the law and land purchase.

Similarly, the main reason for the existence of the American Ulster-Scots Presbyterian diaspora was a discriminating state that had no accountability and was legally unassailable.

Nelson fails to acknowledge the true generators of the enlightenment in Ulster - the Presbyterian-led United Irishmen, including Henry Joy McCracken, Henry Haslett, Thomas McCabe etc.

Maybe they had just a touch too much green and red for his taste?


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