who is winning?

Lives are threatened.

Homes and businesses are threatened.

There is rioting, and water cannon in action.

Main roads are blocked at the busiest time of the day.

Families are anxious; will they all be able to get home?

It’s apparently a good news story when 500 or 2,000 people gather to protest and block roads, but do so without violence breaking out. No matter how intimidating they are. No matter what chaos is caused by their behaviour.

Politicians say “There is no excuse for violence, but…”


city hall flag protest

We’re seeing masked men on the streets. Banners announcing “democracy doesn’t work.”

Shops and restaurants are losing money, at what should be the busiest time of year. The time of year that could save some of those businesses, those jobs.

This is not simply about a council decision regarding a flag- many of the protests are happening outside that council area. This is how some people react to what they see as a loss of power and status. Their view of the natural order has been threatened and an unholy tantrum is the chosen response.


The bit that I’m missing is this: who is benefitting from this situation? A week ago I thought I knew, now I’m as baffled as the rest of the world.

The economy is losing.

The reputation of the region as a place to visit or do business is vanishing.

Children born long after ‘the troubles’ are being introduced to political violence in their city.

Any jobs going where you live?


pictures from Belfast Telegraph


21 thoughts on “who is winning?

    1. I’ve calmed down a little, partly cos we couldn’t afford to move 🙂 You’ll all just have to put up with the ranting until I win the lottery.
      I really must start buying lottery tickets…

  1. Nobody is benefitting. It’s all just a loyalist show of strength which in reality is a show of mindless stupidity and economic damage. And as Naomi Long said, outright fascism. Plus it equates the Union Jack with thuggery and intimidation rather than anything positive.

    1. My two are baffled. We can ignore toddlers in a tantrum,and not reward them with attention- but it’s hard to fathom that these are grown ups, so called responsible grown ups, who think this is an effective way of making a point.

    1. We’ve had academic tell us just how like those riots these are- disenfranchised, powerless folk making a protest the only way that they can. Unfortunately our so called leaders are far from blameless; there was some ‘stirring’ going on by cynical, devious people who like to wash their hands…

  2. I can barely admit to you how ignorant of this situation I am…it’s rather appalling. I will get up to speed, I promise. But I can figure certain things out. I care about you and your precious family. Be safe.

    1. Debra, believe me, you’re not missing much! A bun fight, manufactured by politicians who then began to panic that they couldn’t control it. In the meantime, chaos reigns and lives are threatened.

  3. There is a lot of ugliness in the world today. We have a lot of troubles here, too. Some people are predicting things will get much uglier still. It is both scary and infuriating.

  4. Good post. (I’ve linked to it from here http://wp.me/pDjed-1AG )
    I’ve had one English acquaintance cancel business plans for Northern Ireland over the recent trouble and another almost call something off. They were overreacting. But that’s part of the impact.

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