Saturday, May 13, 2006

Council Watch - Protests arouse over "British" Queen & IRA Hunger Strikes

By 'The Gown's' Frank Talk

TELL me, what do the Queen and Ian Paisley, and Hunger Strikes all have in common? Well this question was attempted to be answered by Student Councillors on Tuesday 9th May.

At the sixth statuatory meeting of Student Council motions were put before its members requesting that the Union speaker and the President of the Students' Union write to both the Queen and the Rev'd Ian Paisley congratulating them on their 80th Birthday's.

To mark the occasion a motion was also put before members for the singing of the National Anthem, 'God Save the Queen'.

Union officals and disgrutled Councillor's were saved from the singing attempt as the motions did not carry as Council ran under quorum and business was suspended. This did not however stop the controversy as accusations of hypocracy were made by Queen's University Sinn Fein against the DUA's (Democratic Unionist) Edward Hanna, accusing him of being hypocritical with the comments he made on the Hunger Strike exhabition.

In reaction to the Hunger Strike exhabition, Mr Hanna said:

"This type of event only causes segregation between the student population as it fails to promote peace and reconciliation," and added: "Many young students view these sorts of memorials as degrading and unacceptable, wishing to move on from the past and look forward to a brighter future."Students' within the unionist community feel that it is wrong for the university to support any event which glorifies terrorists who were involved in the killing of innocent people."
Sinn Fein's Andrea O'Kane after the meeting of Council said:

"It is interesting to note Edward is in opposition to an exhibition with claims that it is allegedly divisive and did nothing to promote inclusivity but is this not the same Edward that attempted to mandate Student Council to send birthday wishes to the British Queen and by singing the British National Anthem after Student Council in an attempt to provoke provocation by blatant sectarian and exclusionist actions.

Ms O'Kane concluded saying: "This is clearly an attempt to prevent republicans expressing their culture beliefs in a non- threatening way and a refusal to accept that we have every right to honour the sacrifice and bravery of the men and women who challenged the British war machine in Ireland and won. These people shook the foundations of Irish politics and changed them forever."

Motions were put at the meeting by both the DUA and QUUA (Queen's Ulster Unionists) in opposition to the exhabition condemning it and declaring it an act of 'triumphalism' and 'glorification'.

I suppose many students' will be asking themselves - 'What is this all to do with me?', as elections loomed some 2 day's later, the lecturers strike continues with the threat of examinations not proceeding and with variable 'top-up' fees coming to force shortly ... but hey, some things will never change in local student politics.


Blogger Gnarles said...

"singing the British National Anthem after Student Council in an attempt to provoke provocation by blatant sectarian and exclusionist actions."

Nonsense. As students of the Queen's University, Belfast, it is our duty and honour to sing our national anthem to mark our Monarchs 80th Birthday. This is not provocation, and anyone that is offended by it should move to another country if they feel so strongly about our National Anthem. It is illegitimate to compare this to the disgraceful exhibition that was held in QUB premises glorifying the suicide of a number of convicted terrorists including murderers.

5/15/2006 5:12 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Listen gnarles the version sung by councillors was the sectarian one - 'popish tricks'. How is this acceptable?

5/15/2006 5:36 pm  
Blogger Gnarles said...

"Popish tricks" is not sectarian. I defy anyone to justify the actions of the Vatican in the past 2000 years. For centuries, Popes, Cardinals, etc have manipulated and abused their authority through pluralism, absenteeism, nepotism, simony, etc, etc, etc. Even in this modern age look at the great cover-up of paedophilia in the Roman Catholic church. No, "popish tricks" is not sectarian, it is a truth which is relevant still today.
It is also a recognised version of the National Anthem, and is therefore acceptable to be sung to mark the 80th Birthday of HM the Queen.

5/16/2006 4:03 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ohhh! I do love a good old sing- song! When's the next one?

5/22/2006 10:14 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For starters, it should in fact be 'knavish tricks', not 'popish tricks.'

As for Ms O'Kane and her self-righteous drivel about republicans celebrating culture, I'm certainly glad my culture does not involve the slaughter of innocent civilians and people whose only 'crime' was to don an RUC or UDR uniform. Nor does my culture include the glorification of suicide, a terrible stain on Northern Ireland no matter who carries it out.

6/02/2006 3:15 pm  

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