What would be the future of (ex) unionists in a United Ireland?

Drogheda445

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Demographics is a theme which crops up frequently on discussions of the likelihood of a United Ireland. Essentially it has been argued that convincing the unionist population of Northern Ireland of the merits of unity is a lost cause and the best hope would be to put it crudely, "outbreed" them. From this point of view, normal political tactics like swaying voters to a certain cause is redundant in this context; two national communities exist and change can only be made through a demographic shift.

This approach leaves out exactly what would happen to the "unionist" population after a United Ireland is proclaimed; it's an incredibly short-sighted approach since it provides no picture of the situation of the former unionist population once unity has occurred. But the former unionist population won't disappear into a puff of smoke; they will still make up a substantial proportion of the population (just under a million going by current figures, so about a sixth of the population). Assuming there isn't a mass emigration of Northern unionists to Great Britain or elsewhere, how would we approach them?

For a start, assuming the demographic outcome wins the day, few if any of the former unionist population will have been convinced of the benefits of a United Ireland. If anything, the long-standing siege mentality will have been strengthened. Such a discontented new section of Irish society may react violently, and even assuming a peaceful transition, a widespread backlash should be expected. How would this state with its limited security services/army deal with what would most likely be the biggest challenge it has ever faced?

How would we accommodate to British national identity in this new state? What would be the place of the Orange Order and other institutions? Politically, what concessions ought to be made to this new community? How would our famously rigid political system account for an entirely new political elements; would the two and a half party structure be totally turned on its head?

Walking blindly into this would be catastrophic, and the demographic "victory" would be particularly dangerous as it would do nothing to sooth unionist fears or even account for them.

Essentially, how would we sensibly approach an ex unionist minority in a newly unified Ireland?
 


razorblade

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Demographics is a theme which crops up frequently on discussions of the likelihood of a United Ireland. Essentially it has been argued that convincing the unionist population of Northern Ireland of the merits of unity is a lost cause and the best hope would be to put it crudely, "outbreed" them. From this point of view, normal political tactics like swaying voters to a certain cause is redundant in this context; two national communities exist and change can only be made through a demographic shift.

This approach leaves out exactly what would happen to the "unionist" population after a United Ireland is proclaimed; it's an incredibly short-sighted approach since it provides no picture of the situation of the former unionist population once unity has occurred. But the former unionist population won't disappear into a puff of smoke; they will still make up a substantial proportion of the population (just under a million going by current figures, so about a sixth of the population). Assuming there isn't a mass emigration of Northern unionists to Great Britain or elsewhere, how would we approach them?

For a start, assuming the demographic outcome wins the day, few if any of the former unionist population will have been convinced of the benefits of a United Ireland. If anything, the long-standing siege mentality will have been strengthened. Such a discontented new section of Irish society may react violently, and even assuming a peaceful transition, a widespread backlash should be expected. How would this state with its limited security services/army deal with what would most likely be the biggest challenge it has ever faced?

How would we accommodate to British national identity in this new state? What would be the place of the Orange Order and other institutions? Politically, what concessions ought to be made to this new community? How would our famously rigid political system account for an entirely new political elements; would the two and a half party structure be totally turned on its head?

Walking blindly into this would be catastrophic, and the demographic "victory" would be particularly dangerous as it would do nothing to sooth unionist fears or even account for them.

Essentially, how would we sensibly approach an ex unionist minority in a newly unified Ireland?
They would be irish citizens and would have the same rights as the rest of the population.
 

McSlaggart

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Demographics is a theme which crops up frequently on discussions of the likelihood of a United Ireland. Essentially it has been argued that convincing the unionist population of NoFrom this point of view, normal political tactics like swaying voters to a certain cause is redundant in this context; two national communities exist and change can only be made through a demographic shift.

This approach leaves out exactly what would happen to the "unionist" population after a United Ireland is proclaimed; it's an incredibly short-sighted approach since it provides no picture of the situation of the former unionist population once unity has occurred. But the former unionist population won't disappear into a puff of smoke; they will still make up a substantial proportion of the population (just under a million going by current figures, so about a sixth of the population). Assuming there isn't a mass emigration of Northern unionists to Great Britain or elsewhere, how would we approach them?

For a start, assuming the demographic outcome wins the day, few if any of the former unionist population will have been convinced of the benefits of a United Ireland. If anything, the long-standing siege mentality will have been strengthened. Such a discontented new section of Irish society may react violently, and even assuming a peaceful transition, a widespread backlash should be expected. How would this state with its limited security services/army deal with what would most likely be the biggest challenge it has ever faced?

How would we accommodate to British national identity in this new state? What would be the place of the Orange Order and other institutions? Politically, what concessions ought to be made to this new community? How would our famously rigid political system account for an entirely new political elements; would the two and a half party structure be totally turned on its head?

Walking blindly into this would be catastrophic, and the demographic "victory" would be particularly dangerous as it would do nothing to sooth unionist fears or even account for them.

Essentially, how would we sensibly approach an ex unionist minority in a newly unified Ireland?
Do you have any links to people thinking about out breeding anyone? Unionists are just people who want to get on with their own existance and you treat them like everyone else.
 

PBP voter

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gerhard dengler

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Demographics is a theme which crops up frequently on discussions of the likelihood of a United Ireland. Essentially it has been argued that convincing the unionist population of Northern Ireland of the merits of unity is a lost cause and the best hope would be to put it crudely, "outbreed" them. From this point of view, normal political tactics like swaying voters to a certain cause is redundant in this context; two national communities exist and change can only be made through a demographic shift.

This approach leaves out exactly what would happen to the "unionist" population after a United Ireland is proclaimed; it's an incredibly short-sighted approach since it provides no picture of the situation of the former unionist population once unity has occurred. But the former unionist population won't disappear into a puff of smoke; they will still make up a substantial proportion of the population (just under a million going by current figures, so about a sixth of the population). Assuming there isn't a mass emigration of Northern unionists to Great Britain or elsewhere, how would we approach them?

For a start, assuming the demographic outcome wins the day, few if any of the former unionist population will have been convinced of the benefits of a United Ireland. If anything, the long-standing siege mentality will have been strengthened. Such a discontented new section of Irish society may react violently, and even assuming a peaceful transition, a widespread backlash should be expected. How would this state with its limited security services/army deal with what would most likely be the biggest challenge it has ever faced?

How would we accommodate to British national identity in this new state? What would be the place of the Orange Order and other institutions? Politically, what concessions ought to be made to this new community? How would our famously rigid political system account for an entirely new political elements; would the two and a half party structure be totally turned on its head?

Walking blindly into this would be catastrophic, and the demographic "victory" would be particularly dangerous as it would do nothing to sooth unionist fears or even account for them.

Essentially, how would we sensibly approach an ex unionist minority in a newly unified Ireland?
You've asked the questions that would need to be addressed.

For simplicity, let's say of 1.5 million people in NI 1.0m are Unionist - this would mean out of a total population of 6 million, about 20% of the entire population would be Unionist in a UI. That 20% would represent a huge block in any new dispensation.

This 20% demographic might cause some of the political parties in this part of the country to realign?

Any new political dispensation would be fascinating. I think a Unionist grouping would be a natural opposition to a newly aligned FF/FG.

On a civic level of course there would have to be room made to allow that new demographic to express their Unionism, such as OO marches.
 

Drogheda445

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Do you have any links to people thinking about out breeding anyone? Unionists are just people who want to get on with their own existance and you treat them like everyone else.
There has been much made of recent censuses and the demographic parity between unionist (read Protestant) population and the nationalist (Catholic) one, and the trend towards a Catholic majority. The recent election has highlighted for many that supposed population shift. Actual polling on a United Ireland generally tends to be ignored.
 

Fullforward

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They would be allowed to lead the St.Patricks day parade and have a Barbecue on the 12th in and around Slane.
 

johnny365

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Certainly would be afraid of wide spread discrimination if sf with its sectarian tendencies were in charge.
 

SideysGhost

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For simplicity, let's say of 1.5 million people in NI 1.0m are Unionist
Or ya know we could actually use facts, where of about 1.8m in NI, around 800,000 are unionists.

Is the new nonsense excuse some sort of bonkers vision of hordes of Orangemen marching up and down Grafton Street every week?
 

Congalltee

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They would go from being 1m out of 60m, to 1m out of 6m.
As unionism would no longer have mission, they would diversify into various political groupings, but the residual distinction between FF and FG would be rendered obsolete.
Many of them would be great champions for social reform e.g. shorter period for divorce. The 38% who voted no to marriage equality would have a public representative, other than mssrs Mullen and Mattie McGrath.
Trinity would be boosted in numbers.
 

Man or Mouse

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Might they form a United Kingdom with Kerry?

I'd be worried about that one.
 

JCR

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Demographics is a theme which crops up frequently on discussions of the likelihood of a United Ireland. Essentially it has been argued that convincing the unionist population of Northern Ireland of the merits of unity is a lost cause and the best hope would be to put it crudely, "outbreed" them. From this point of view, normal political tactics like swaying voters to a certain cause is redundant in this context; two national communities exist and change can only be made through a demographic shift.

This approach leaves out exactly what would happen to the "unionist" population after a United Ireland is proclaimed; it's an incredibly short-sighted approach since it provides no picture of the situation of the former unionist population once unity has occurred. But the former unionist population won't disappear into a puff of smoke; they will still make up a substantial proportion of the population (just under a million going by current figures, so about a sixth of the population). Assuming there isn't a mass emigration of Northern unionists to Great Britain or elsewhere, how would we approach them?

For a start, assuming the demographic outcome wins the day, few if any of the former unionist population will have been convinced of the benefits of a United Ireland. If anything, the long-standing siege mentality will have been strengthened. Such a discontented new section of Irish society may react violently, and even assuming a peaceful transition, a widespread backlash should be expected. How would this state with its limited security services/army deal with what would most likely be the biggest challenge it has ever faced?

How would we accommodate to British national identity in this new state? What would be the place of the Orange Order and other institutions? Politically, what concessions ought to be made to this new community? How would our famously rigid political system account for an entirely new political elements; would the two and a half party structure be totally turned on its head?

Walking blindly into this would be catastrophic, and the demographic "victory" would be particularly dangerous as it would do nothing to sooth unionist fears or even account for them.

Essentially, how would we sensibly approach an ex unionist minority in a newly unified Ireland?
I dunno, some kind of partition might work?
 

Novos

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There has been much made of recent censuses and the demographic parity between unionist (read Protestant) population and the nationalist (Catholic) one, and the trend towards a Catholic majority. The recent election has highlighted for many that supposed population shift. Actual polling on a United Ireland generally tends to be ignored.
I don't think it has. Nationalists turned out in bigger numbers than ever before , but unionists didn't. I'd like another quick election to see where we really are.
 

ScoobyDoo

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Everyone on the island would be entitled to British and Irish passports :roll:
 

SideysGhost

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Nope, they would have an entitlement to a British passport under the Good Friday Agreement as indeed would anyone who is born in the 6 counties.
*sigh*

Post-unification

a) the GFA would no longer apply, being superseded by the unification negotiations and

b) entitlement to a British passport is entirely the prerogative of Westminster. Now we can ask them nicely to let ex-Nordies keep their British passports but if London wants to withdraw that right post-unification - like they did in Hong Kong - there's not much anyone in Ireland can do about it.
 

Cdebru

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You've asked the questions that would need to be addressed.

For simplicity, let's say of 1.5 million people in NI 1.0m are Unionist - this would mean out of a total population of 6 million, about 20% of the entire population would be Unionist in a UI. That 20% would represent a huge block in any new dispensation.

This 20% demographic might cause some of the political parties in this part of the country to realign?

Any new political dispensation would be fascinating. I think a Unionist grouping would be a natural opposition to a newly aligned FF/FG.

On a civic level of course there would have to be room made to allow that new demographic to express their Unionism, such as OO marches.

The orange marches wouldn't have the same connotation as they currently have in the north as they would no longer be a demonstration of one communities superiority over the other, just as the Donegal orange march is not contentious because it doesn't have that aspect to it.

It could probably be desirable for a united Ireland to join the commonwealth and to maintain stuff from the GFA like British Irish parliamentary bodies and even the stormont assembly with its mandatory coalition and protections for both communities, and the same arrangements on flying flags and policing arrangements.

It wouldn't be a subsuming of the 6 counties into the 26 county state.
 

NMunsterman

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I don't think it has. Nationalists turned out in bigger numbers than ever before , but unionists didn't. I'd like another quick election to see where we really are.
Translates as :

" I as the non-Unionist I repeatedly claim to be am exceptionally stunned and pi$$ed off with this result which has sent shock-waves throughout the Unionist community. Non-Unionists like me are always accept the result of a democratic election - provided we get the result we want which is a Unionist majority in Stormont".
 


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