A chara, – Echoing much recent commentary on the subject of Irish unity, Emma DeSouza describes as a “pervasive misbelief” that “unity would manifest as the Republic simply subsuming the North” (“Deep North-South dialogue needed for any chance of unity”, Opinion & Analysis, February 1st).
If all campaigners for reunification think along these lines, then I believe they are in for a bit of a shock.
In 30 years of involvement with politics, my top priority has been the achievement of a united Ireland. I have watched with absolute joy over recent years as huge numbers of people have come from outside the State to make their homes here, in the hope that a modern, tolerant and diverse Ireland, welcoming others with warmth and respect, might be more attractive to all Northern voters when they get their chance to vote in a border poll.
However, I don’t believe for a moment that any one of our new citizens has had any expectation that we put the Polish flag in a corner of the Tricolour or that Brazilians be guaranteed a seat at Cabinet. These minority groupings, some significant in number, have come to Ireland as it is now, and that is what attracted them to come and to stay.
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When the opportunity arises, I will be thrilled to vote for the six counties to join our State.
But if that is contingent on us diluting our Irishness or significantly altering the country we have built over the last century, I will regretfully decline and wait until a better proposal is put before us in due course. I suspect I am not alone. – Is mise,