Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Orange Parades; what is the solution?

O dear. They're still rioting in Northern Ireland.

Police chiefs in Northern Ireland today called for a long term solution to the annual parading disputes after another 12th of July was marred by rioting.

Years ago - so many years that I cannot find the letter on this computer, I proposed a long term solution to the annual parades.

The problem is that the Protestant Christians wish to march through Republican Christians' streets. The Republican Christians object to this.

The solution is that the Protestant Christians should pay rent to the Republican Christians for the use of their streets. Since it would take many centuries for the Protestant Christians to agree to pay the rent directly, the local authority should pay on their behalf. The rent would be sufficiently generous for its effect to be visible each year - for instance, in terms of a community hall, or a swimming bath, or a children's play area. Receipt of the rent would be conditional on absence of violence as their guests march by, wearing the Sash, past signs saying New Community Hall, thanks to the Generosity of our Protestant Friends. (Mooning would not be classified as violence).

As a psychiatrist, I can opine that after a couple of years of realising that their marches were benefiting the Republicans, the Protestants would swiftly discover that the authentic traditional route in fact did not pass through Republican areas at all.

I did propose this to the ?Parades Commission, charged with actively seeking solutions to the annual ritual of violence, but they were only interested in that which was hammered out on their own anvil, and did not reply.

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