Northern Irish Politicians Attend Huge Funeral For a Terrorist During Covid Lockdown With No Consequences
During the Black Death in Medieval Europe, almost 700 years ago, the various countries and cities across the continent issued a series of public health directives aimed at stemming the tide of death and destruction the Plague had brought with it.
The City State of Venice, for example, shut the city off to trade, paid gondoliers to ferry bodies tossed down into them to public mass graves, and closed down pubs.
The City of Pisa, meanwhile, limited the number of mourners at a funeral to only immediate family. With this exception: “none of this applies to the burial of knights, doctors of law, judges, and doctors of physic, whose bodies can be honoured by their heirs . . . in any way they please.”
I say this as a point of comparison to present-day Northern Ireland where the bereaved are only allowed to mourn their family members in very small groups, and where many people were not able to attend family funerals at all because of travel, quarantine, or shielding restrictions. Except, of course, in the case of politicians — and terrorists.
In June last year, a terrorist and former member of Sinn Féin was buried. The funeral cortege was composed of 30 people, as per Coronavirus guidelines. However, there were hundreds of people in the further procession that followed the coffin, and thousands of others showed up to line the streets. Nowhere was there any attempt to wear masks or enforce social distancing.
Deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill was present during the funeral procession, at the graveside, and at an indoor Requiem Mass with around 120 people. She also did not wear a mask and made no effort at social distancing.
We know she didn’t wear a mask or keep 2 metres distance because she posed for a selfie. At a funeral.
Honestly, that alone is in such poor taste it should be grounds for, if not political consequences, at least political censure.
However, it was announced this week that there would be no legal or political consequences for Ms. O’Neill or any of the other attendees or organisers of the funeral procession.
Despite demanding that everyone else in the country abide by coronavirus restrictions and forego the comfort of extended family and friends at the funerals of their loved ones, Ms. O’Neill and Sinn Féin believe they are above the law and have done nothing wrong.
After the verdit was released this week, violence has broken out again in Northern Ireland as people vent their frustration and anger at being disrespected and betrayed by the political elite.
The rioters are absolutely wrong to express their anger through violence. The other members of the community don’t deserve to be subjected to it, and it’s counter-productive to both the peace process and the fight against Coronavirus. (It is also not the whole reason they are rioting — part of the reason is manipulation by the loyalist terrorist groups who are upset at the police who are doing their job by cracking down on their illegal activities.)
But violence works in Northern Ireland. It gets you what you want. And so long as politicians are unwilling to take responsibility for their actions, so long as they refuse to listen to what their constituents are saying, the people of Northern Ireland will continue to resort to violence to make their voices heard. Or at least they play into the hands of terrorists who will use it as an excuse to further their illegal agendas.