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Ulster Museum Creationism idea was about diversity

The American writer E B White once said that: "Prejudice is a great time saver. You can form opinions without having to get the facts."

That quotation came to mind when I read the letter from Chris Conwell of Fermanagh Ogra Sinn Fein (Write Back, June 1) in relation to the Ulster Museum because, quite clearly, he has not bothered to get the facts before writing his letter.

He describes me as a "one culture" minister, in spite of the fact that the core of my letter to the trustees of the Ulster Museum was about a shared future, good relations, human rights, and equality. I asked the museum to address a number of themes such as "recognition of the diversity of traditions that exist in Northern Ireland, and respect for this diversity".

Moreover, I suggested to the museum that they consider the inclusion of information about not only the Orange Order, but other fraternal organisations, such as the Ancient Order of Hibernians.

He states that I "lambasted" the Ulster Museum. Nothing could be further from the truth.

He suggests that I would be at home with Pol Pot and that brought to mind another saying,: 'There are none so blind as those who will not see.'

In fact, Pol Pot was responsible for a strategy of mass-murder and genocide in Cambodia. I would suggest that if Chris is looking for people in Northern Ireland who might be at home with Pol Pot, he might look nearer home - especially those who carried out a 30-year terrorist campaign of murder.


Minister for Culture, Arts and Leisure


From Belfast Telegraph