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The DUP: Why is it so reactionary?

Over the last few weeks, the Northern Irish political party has been an unexpected protagonist in UK politics. With the aim of explaining its foundations and ambitions, as well as why it is so reactionary, experts will debate the topic in London on 18 July.

 

theresa-may-caricature-wikimedia-commons
Theresa May

Juanjo Andrés Cuervo

 

What was most notable following the general election held in June was Theresa May’s failure to achieve an absolute majority in order to govern.

More specifically, the wide reduction of the margin between the Conservatives and Labour meant that both experts in the subject and a large majority of the population deemed Corbyn as the triumphant politician. Nevertheless, the Tories made a deal with DUP (Democratic Unionist Party) to gain the ten seats that would ensure they won the majority in the British Parliament.

Although it seemed like an ideal strategy for Theresa May, some of the ideals linked to the Northern Irish party have provoked numerous criticisms towards the UK government.

In fact, Iris Robinson, the DUP Member of Parliament, made the following statement in 2008: “I cannot think of anything more sickening than a child being abused. It is comparable to the act of homosexuality. I think they are all comparable. I feel totally repulsed by both.”

Dublin irlanda pixabayAnd yet this offence towards the LGBT community was not the only one made by a member of the party. Previously, the son of its founder assessed homosexuality as “immoral, offensive and unpleasant”.

They are also against the right to abortion; their alliance with May is a sign that the Conservatives are willing to do anything in order to carry on governing the country.

DUP in Parliament

Founded in 1971 by Christian fundamentalist and demagogue Ian Paisley, they now have 10 of their members in Westminster and represent 36% of the Northern Irish vote. As time passes, the political party’s strategy has continued to be the same, and its ideologies relating to women, sexuality, climate change and evolutionary theories have roots in the old Irish revolutions.

Arlene Foster DUP wikimedia commoms
Arlene Foster

Because of this, and due to their future relevance in the political development of the United Kingdom, it is important to get an in-depth picture of the foundations on which DUP asserts itself. An event entitled ‘The DUP: Why is it so reactionary?” will therefore be held as an opportunity to analyse the ideals that the party represents and explain its representation in elections.

A group of experts will thus participate in a session of debate to cover those issues. Amongst others, Geoff Bell, author of “Hesitant Comrades: The Irish revolution and the British Labour movement”, and Andy Stoew of the Socialist Resistance will attend, an organisation that in fact created the event, which has ideals based in defending the environment, society, women and revolutions to achieve equality.

Day and time: 18 July at 7.30 pm. Address: Marchmont Street Community Centre, 62 Marchmont Street, WC1N 1AB. Contact: london@socialistresistance.org. More information here.

Photos: Wikimedia Commons & Pixabay  –  (Translated by Abaigh Wheatley – email: abaighwheatley@hotmail.co.uk)

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