A welcome feature of recent years is that Irish Catholicism has been dying on its feet. No one wants to be a priest anymore. The youngsters are shagging in a way that was once the stuff of unfulfillable fantasies and attendance at Mass is declining. The only thing that has been keeping the numbers up in churches on Sundays is the big numbers of worshippers from The Philippines and Eastern Europe, especially Poland. They are nearly all migrant workers getting little more than the minimum wage, just the sort of people a socially progressive party should be reaching out to.So how does Martina Anderson, Sinn Féin’s representative in Derry, take up the cudgels on their behalf? Does she stand outside factories recruiting for unions? Does she expose exploiting landlords or ask awkward questions about working conditions?
No. She tells them that they aren’t really her type of Catholic.
Arsehole Anderson has decided that “Catholic” is not a religion. It’s an ethnic identity and migrant Catholic workers should not be classified as Catholic when it comes to monitoring the workforce in the north of Ireland workforce. Catholicism’s claim to be a universal religion cuts no ice with her. She wants the foreigners to be classified as “other”.
This is her sophisticated justification for this racist hogwash: “Employers do not perceive migrant workers as belonging to the local nationalist or unionist communities and this is artificially inflating the Catholic/nationalist representation in the workforce, the bulk of whom are from Catholic countries. “The same situation has arisen within the internal tracking systems of the PSNI making it difficult to track the true numbers of Catholics/nationalist applying or being appointed locally.”
Racist attacks against migrant workers are now a commonplace of local news coverage all over Ireland. That is just the moment when any party that claims to be socialist, or even liberal, would be making a very public stand in support of the victims of racist attacks. Arsehole Anderson should have been expelled for that statement. The fact that she’s allowed to remain as an elected official for the organisation buries any notion that Sinn Féin is now anything but a party on the right of Irish politics.
Better late than never on the old realisation front, eh 😉
Still, an interesting topic, reminds me of the nativist strand of thinking in America.