Held Back and Dragged Back

It is now well over fifty years since citizens in Northern Ireland took to the streets demanding change, a better, fairer and more accountable society and civil rights for all.

We are now approaching the twenty fifth anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement, signed at the end of over thirty years of murder, bloodshed and terror.

Today, we have families that cannot afford to heat their homes, children going hungry, queues at foodbanks, part time, precarious employment and a culture of zero hours contracts. We have working people depending on benefits to top up their wages, thousands of workers on picket lines in defence of jobs, services, pay and conditions, and we have large companies and corporations posting the most obscene levels of profits and making huge payouts to their shareholders.

Yet we continue to elect, in large and increasing numbers, political parties whose response to these crises is to sustain  and develop existing divisions, promote culture and identity wars, build on their tribal bases and all the while support the very social and economic system that lies at the heart of all our problems.

In sixty years we have gone backwards. We have been dragged backwards, firstly by armed gangs on our streets and violently competing nationalisms, British and Irish, now by political nationalisms, British and Irish that sees flags, community identity, language and symbolism as more important that the lives and prospects of working class people. We are not in that camp.

The coming year will be a telling one in the battle for the dignity of working people, the preservation of our public services and the advancement of the socialist alternative. We are up for that challenge.

1 thought on “Held Back and Dragged Back

  1. The bread and butter issues arising from systemic capitalism are never questioned by either of the nationalist parties who do not want to see the unity of the working class and the building of a Socialist society. In the meantime we can all wrap up in our flags to keep warm.

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