I will return in due course to a subject I raised on Queen’s University’s Compromise after Conflict site here, about how “Progressives” (SPL – “Secular, Progressive, Liberal”) are almost becoming a third “pillar” in Northern Ireland society (versus “PUL” and “CNR”).
I would consider myself one. Yet I also hinted in that piece (and in my response to this one over on Slugger) that “Progressives” can be just as bigoted in some of their views as anyone else. Increasingly, one obvious example is victims issues – although to be clear, the lead “Progressive” party, Alliance, has maintained a highly fair and sensitive stance.
Other “Progressives” have not been quite so sensitive, unfortunately. Some jumped on the figure of £190 million to police the past as “evidence” that we should move on without even looking for the truth. The notion that justice and the truth have a price tag is difficult enough, but for victims (who have already given so much) to hear this is disgusting.
I have cautioned other “Progressives”, particularly new to politics, that they are simply coming across as callous. Being involved in politics or the civic sphere generally in Northern Ireland requires a degree of sensitivity – including about what may and frankly may not be advocated publicly. I fear some new to the game are missing that, and causing further pain as they do so.