Response to Brian Wilson’s anti-Unionist attack on Brunswick Road flags in the Co.Down Spectator:
It was with little surprise, but much bemusement, that I read former Alliance/Green/Independent politician Brian Wilson’s contribution on the letters page of the Co.Down Spectator, 6th July edition.
Mr Wilson appears incandescent that Union and Ulster flags, erected to celebrate the 12th July- which is to be held in Bangor- have been placed on the Brunswick Road.
He demands that the Brunswick Road- and only the Brunswick Road it appears- should be “flag-free”. Let us examine the logic of this absurd suggestion. Why should the Brunswick Road be by-passed by those decorating the town for the yearly cultural celebrations?
Does Mr Wilson seek to set the Brunswick Road as a place apart? Does he seek to create an enclave, or worse still is this an attempt to create an interface in an area where all of the community live happily side by side?
Mr Wilson also states the Union and Ulster flags are “provocative”. What is provocative about the flag of Northern Ireland and the Union flag? Who would be ‘provoked’ by the sight of such lawful expressions of National identity?
You see, the logic of Mr Wilson’s piece is that far from contributing to harmonious community relations, he is actually stirring the pot and seeking to mark out the Brunswick Road as ‘flag free’ terrority.
Of course we all know what this really means- Mr Wilson wants to subtly, using the flowery language so adored by the pan-Nationalist ‘progressive’ coalition, make clear that the Brunswick Road area is not Unionist. That it is different from the rest of the town.
Mr Wilson does not seek Abbey Street, the Clandeboye Road, Whitehill or Kilcooley to be ‘flag-free’. No- it is only the Brunswick Road that he seeks to be set apart from the rest of the town.
It is only that community that Mr Wilson, by virtue of his stirring the pot of division, wishes to see partioned off from the rest of the Bangor area.
Mr Wilson’s contribution comes at a time when the local Unionist community are already keeping a watchful eye on the attempts by Sinn Fein- whose armed wing, the IRA- bombed Bangor, to stir the sectarian pot in a quiet seaside town.
Mr Wilson is either a fool or a knave. If he is the former then he should reflect carefully on his attempts to isolate an entire part of Bangor and create a sectarian divide and if he is the later, then one has no doubt his contribution is the opening salvo in a local campaign against Unionism by the Pan-Nationalist ‘progressive’ coalition of Sinn Fein, the SDLP, Green party and Alliance.