DUP Extremists

Tonight The Pensive Quill features guest writer Gerry McGeough who is currently a political prisoner in one of Britain's jails. It was initially written on 24 May 2012.

The constant political persecution directed against me by DUP extremists is quite extraordinary. Never has any Republican prisoner had to endure such a prolonged venomous onslaught. The latest outburst by Nigel Dodds, Arlene Foster and Maurice Morrow as reported on the front page of the Newsletter on May 23rd is just another example of this.

I contend that this obsession with me has nothing to do with justice or even politics but rooted in a near satanic hatred of the Catholic Faith of which I am perceived to be a defender by some of these extremists. Much of this can be traced to October 2010, when the Dungannon Free Presbyterian sect founded by Ian Paisley and with significant DUP membership, placed a paid advertisement in Dungannon based Tyrone Courier newspaper, which described the Catholic mass as "blasphemous fable" and the pope as "a man of sin" and the "antichrist".

Incredibly the Tyrone Courier published the ad and Catholics, who constitute overwhelmingly the majority of the population in Tyrone, were outraged. As a member of the AOH in Tyrone I was approached to give leadership on this issue and I did.

In the first instance I brought a complaint to the Advertising Standard Agency and, amid much local publicity, asked Unionist politicians in the area to condemn this type of anti-Catholic sectarianism outright. They refused to do so, but they were clearly and seriously rattled by the fact that Catholics would no longer tolerate this "croppies lie down" attitude. In their rage, they have run a very personalized hate campaign against me ever since, which puts self righteous hysterical media tirades into context.
Bearing all this in mind, I now once again call upon Arlene Foster and Maurice Morrow to condemn this type of anti-Catholic sectarianism in East Tyrone without reservation. Should they fail to do so, they must stand indicted before the world as unrepentant sectarian bigots with whom civilized society should have no truck.


  1. "I contend that this obsession with me has nothing to do with justice or even politics but rooted in a near satanic hatred of the Catholic Faith of which I am perceived to be a defender by some of these extremists."

    Couldn't agree with you more, Gerry. It is the one acceptable hatred of our day, and it is alive and kicking.

  2. I wish Gerry all the very best and hope he is free to join his family again as soon as possible.I agree with him when he describes Foster, Morrow , Dodds,as bigots,but to tell you the truth when Gerry talks about the aoh I turn of,I see that organisation as nothing more than a mirror image of the lol,the bigots on both sides have exploited their constituencies here to the determinant of a united working class struggle..

  3. John,
    I think this type of bigotry is very much a two-way street.
    For years the, Catholic religion promised anyone who did not follow their path eternal damnation.
    We were the one true faith and all the other poor suckers believers and non who chose an alternative had basically had it.
    When fundamentalism squares up to fundamentalism it is always the innocent who suffer.

    Like Marty, I wish Gerry well and a speedy release I just don't share his opinions.

  4. ‘John,
    I think this type of bigotry is very much a two-way street.’

    I’m not so sure. I have never heard of Catholics trying to gaol a Protestant because they hate Protestantism. I mean, I do, but I am in a significant minority.

    ‘For years the, Catholic religion promised anyone who did not follow their path eternal damnation.’

    Isn’t that still the case? Well not in the post Vatican II crowd, I guess.

    ‘We were the one true faith and all the other poor suckers believers and non who chose an alternative had basically had it.’

    Apart form the invincibly ignorant. They were able to get in by the back door. We are still the one, true Faith.

    ‘When fundamentalism squares up to fundamentalism it is always the innocent who suffer.’

    There is fundamental truth and fundamental error. As long as we stick with the truth we can be fundamental about it. Just as with Republicanism.

    ‘Like Marty, I wish Gerry well and a speedy release I just don't share his opinions.’

    Gerry is being held a hostage because he is too right on too many things.

  5. God save Ulster...cried the hero's.
    alcaholism is the one true faith. AMEN.

  6. AOH is just as bigoted as Paisley's crew . Mc Geough should drop his catholicism and follow the Wolfe Tone version of Republicanism. Hope he doesn't mind missing the eucharistic congress.

  7. John,
    I don't believe Gerry's imprisonment is a consequence even in part of his religious beliefs.
    I know the DUP hold very dear to their absolute hatred of Catholics and if you add a bit of Republicanism to the pot of course the old fire brand blood boils, however, much as the Protestant zealots may loathe Gerry I doubt he was locked up for religion.

    Yes John the are still of the opinion that the Holy, Catholic and Apostolic church is the one true faith, the second Vatican Council still hold true to that.

    On a global scale the Catholic Church did a lot more than lock up those who did not adhere to the one true faith.

  8. Fionnuala,
    'I don't believe Gerry's imprisonment is a consequence even in part of his religious beliefs.'

    You may be right, but the Freemasonic judge took special delight in sentencing him. And the DUP are certainly being exceptionally vindictive against him.

  9. Bear in mind John those maggots Morrow,Foster share the same office in Enniskillen,

  10. To go along with this conversation in the comments,

    I've always wondered ... What's the Irish opinion of the fact that most often vocal support for Irish Republican politics in the U.S.A. comes from right wing/socially conservative/Mass-going Catholic/Republican/AOH-type people. Whereas in Ireland Republican politics still seem to adhere to Socialist/Connolly-esque politics. Well, not in Stormont, but on the grassroots and blogs that I check.

    Do you guys have any critiques or qualms with that? Or at the very least some snide quips along the same line as if some guy who has never moved out of the few square miles he was born and raised in gets a Fighting Irish Leprechaun Tattoo and goes to Dublin Temple Bar and takes a photo in front of all the kegs outside. (Disclaimer: I'm American and I've done that. Not the Leprechaun tattoo but a similarly themed Celtic motif tattoo).

    With no effect to my letter-writing support of the politics, I've just been wondering about that. Its almost like in Ireland the Republicans are akin to Connolly but over here in America they are like Alan Rickman's DEV in the Hollywood-version of MICHAEL COLLINS ie "No need for profanities, Michael!"

  11. Christopher Conley jr The Temple Bar is strictly for the tourists with the prices they charge a cara, the bearded ones version of republicanism is also the same as the line from Michael Collins "go easy on the riddling boys" or maybe he was Gandhi on a bad day?I think that if Connolly or Mac Diarmada were alive today they would want to put the fucking lot against a wall.

  12. Marty you're absolutely right on the Temple Bar area. After I took that picture a bouncer came up to me ribbing me saying "Know how I can tell you're Yanks?" And at first I was like "You sonufa...!" but being from (just outside) Philly, I had to swallow my pride since I've snickered at hundreds of tourists in fanny packs and American Bald Eagle t-shirts holding maps outside of Independence Hall asking "Can you tell us the fastest way to get to The Liberty Bell, and where the best place is to get a famous Cheeesesteak Sandwich?"

    I just find it interesting that American of Irish heritage 3-4 or more generations removed from emmigration often tend to be very socially conservative and right-wing, except in certain inner city neighborhoods where labor union membership requires that they vote Democrat out of economic necessity only.

    It just seems like a lot of the same Americans you'd hear telling you "I can't stand the way John Bull treats the Irish" might then 20 minutes later tell you that Obama's Healthcare plan might end up with "death panels that euthanize us all!" and blame it all on "CNN -- the Communist News Network!"

  13. Christopher,

    You should congratulate yourself on knowing the difference between the tourist traps and reality. Not many Americans make it that far.

    You should know, however, that the "socialist" brand of republicanism you read about a lot on the internet, exists only there and has very little support in any part of Ireland, as you will see if you keep an eye on the election results. Ireland is actually quite a conservative country - more's the pity. Recently in the Dáil a small number of independent left wing candidates got elected, largely due to people protesting the mainstream establishment parties. As yet they are not presenting a serious political threat to the government, although Sinn Féin are the most well organized and numerous of them and have managed to land the odd punch. There has been a slight setback lately in that the recent referendum result looks rather like a signal that the Irish electorate know that some tough decisions have to be taken WRT austerity and Europe etc, which would seem to place SF on the wrong side of the argument.

    The dynamics north and south are somewhat different. In the RoI SF, who are a small minority party in opposition, articulate a rather leftwing stance. Cynics suggest that this is part of the luxury of not being in a position to have to make any tough decisions (as is the case in any democracy). Up in the North, SF are part of the government and together with the DUP they operate a rather conservative line. I mean "conservative" in the sense that they are not concerned with really making any changes to the social order. They are limited to some extent by the fact that the British government retains power over almost all taxation and allocation of the block grant, but I don't see that as much of an excuse as SF have not seriously articulated what they would do and what policies they would implement if they did gain control over this. It is very much "steady as she goes" - the administration continues to basically rubber-stamp the decisions of the civil servants who have been running the place since 1972. I say that as someone who is overall positive about the power sharing administration, particularly the peace and stability that it has brought, although there is much still to do.

    I have noticed among Irish Americans in the USA this right-wing tendency developing and I do find it disturbing. It is not the right wing politics of a landed gentry, but the politics of blue collar workers who, a couple of generations on, have educated themselves and forgotten some of what happened in the past. You do not have to go back far to find a period in history where Irish Americans were poorly treated to say the least, particularly during the major immigration periods. Our understanding of events such as the Famine has moved on; it now seems clear that the British government failed to act because it believed that what was happening was natural and to intervene with aid would be to interfere with the workings of the free market. Worth adding that to immigrate, people had to purchase passage on those awful boats, and to do that they had to sell what food and assets they had. This is not an analysis of history that the GOP and their ilk would be comfortable with.

    I was in an Irish-American bar in a western part of the USA some years ago and got into a discussion on the welfare state and healthcare. One guy, who identified himself as of Irish extraction, told me that there should be no welfare state and that people should simply be allowed to die. I don't think that point of view is popular among Americans but, like I said, it's a sad indication of how far people have allowed themselves to slip.

  14. Unfortunately Irish-Americans have suffered a convenient amnesia forgetting the struggles they fought for inclusion since the very beginning, often turning against the next group of downtrodden to fight over the scraps all the way back to the Draft Rights in NYC in 1863, up through racial tensions and riots here in Philly and Boston and other inner cities during forced busing and white flight from inner city neighborhoods as they became racially integrated in the 1960s and 70s, to hypocritical opposition to immigration policy currently.

    On the other hand a lot of things people seem to be in uproar over in Ireland ie water bills, home property taxes, public healthcare, slumlord landlords and extortionist rents, are considered par for the course over here; and even receiving healthcare and a pension from your private for-profit employer or the very right to unionize and collectively bargain for working conditions is considered not just a spoiled luxury but the SOURCE of American's economic woes, despite Irish-America having climbed into the professional middle class as a result of dedicated and difficult union agitation!

    But most disturbing I would have to say is that after years of Irish-Americans advocating against the military injustices and abuses of power in Ireland, we are seeing so many of the same measures passed here in light of "The War On Terror." Wire taps, surveillance of your web use, military tribunals, a secret White House and DoJ "Kill List" and drone attacks against terror suspects while the evidence as justification is kept classified, and now a National Defense Authorization Act that includes a scary provision allowing U.S. military to indefinitely detain U.S. citizens suspected of aiding terrorism.

    What's wrong is wrong here, there and everywhere. Human rights are human rights.

  15. Comrade Stalin,

    A well argued point. Thanks for taking the time to put it together. On your view of a rightward drift in Irish America, Cahir O’Doherty had a good piece in his Manhattan Diary spot on how there were grave concerns in Irish America about Cardinal Dolan cosying up with the hard political right.

  16. From Helen McClafferty:

    Today, the Free Gerry McGeough Campaign committee will attend a press conference in Dublin, hosted by our International Chairperson Mr Éamon O'Cuiv TD.

    While the main focus of the press conference will be the immediate release of Gerry McGeough, we will also be raising the case of Marian Price and calling for her immediate release.

    Further updates will follow.

  17. From Helen McClafferty:

    These Hypocritical Bible Bashers Become Excited and Aroused
    Gerry McGeough is incarcerated in Maghaberry Prison to allow the bigoted Unionist politicians to strive through a policy of revenge. These hypocritical bible bashers do not give a damn about justice, equality or peace. They are driven by a deep and intense hatred of Irish Republicanism. They can just about tolerate Irish Nationalists, but only do so as a public relations exercise. Though the annual sound of Orange feet tramping through Nationalist areas will always ensure any attempt by bigoted Unionism to appear tolerant will always fail.

    They have always been opposed to the Good Friday Agreement. Gerry, Maria and their four children continue to suffer bigoted Unionist oppression in 2012 because, in the words of their leader Peter Robinson "We have literally dismantled the Belfast Agreement". It's no surprise therefore that his Deputy Nigel Dodds has taken over the reins of the Anti-Gerry McGeough faction in an attempt to ensure Gerry remains in Maghaberry Prison until 2031 on alleged offences dating back to 1981, seventeen years before the signing of the Agreement. This faction of fanatical Unionist politicians which includes Brush, Morrow and Foster are pumped up bigots. They no longer have the use of rural UDR checkpoints set up at night to satisfy their desires of intimidation and assault. Maghaberry Prison is now the stronghold which satisfies those sectarian needs. They become excited and aroused at the thought of Gerry being singled out and imprisoned as a political hostage.

    But that satisfaction and excitement, as with any obsession, will need to be fed time and time again. They will ask for more and although Gerry is the first, he will not be the last. It's not the power-sharing they want, it's the power. The power to make the Croppy Boy lie down. The power to keep us in our place. The power to point the finger and have us dragged off to Maghaberry and imprisoned without trial. Their war has never ended. They simply use alternative means to indulge their cravings. They no longer have the butt and the barrel of a UDR rifle to try and keep us down. But they still have the Diplock Court and their out of retirement RUC comrades back on the streets.

    Damian Herron

    Chairman - Occupied Six Counties
    Free Gerry McGeough Campaign

  18. From Helen McClafferty:

    Free Gerry McGeough Press Conference Speeches.

    Maria McGeough:

    “I want to be very simple and clear. I need my husband at home and even clearer now, my kids, they need their father at home”.

    Una McGeough:

    “My name is Una McGeough. I am 11 years old. On Holy Thursday when I last spoke at a press conference on this issue, I said that there was a great sadness in our family, because my daddy, Gerry McGeough had been taken away from us and jailed by the British because he stood in an election.

    We hardly remember what it was like with him at home. When I play camogie I can picture him there cheering me on. He has missed many important things in our lives. When I started my exams, I didn’t have my daddy there to help me, but thinking about him made me believe in myself and go on. At Cormac’s Holy Communion and my Confirmation, he was not allowed to come. Even so, we had our heads held high up, no matter what.

    As I look back at pictures and memories, I see how happy we were with him. Why can’t these people not understand that we need our daddy.

    I know that he will always encourage me and tell me to bring out the best that I can. He is a good man and we all love him very much.

    When I have to say goodbye to him in that prison, it brings tears to my eyes. It is an injustice and he should be at home with his family. Thank you”.

  19. John,


    ‘hate Protestantism.'

    In terms of religion it would appear to me as having much more going for it than Catholicism. I think it operates on the principle of precluding a cleric middleman hijacking the channel of communication to god. Although that would hardly attract me. How people interact with their invisible man, through a medium, magician or without one, doesn’t grab me.

    ‘eternal damnation.'

    crap for crap artists? We will burn you if you don’t think and do as we say. FFS

    ‘We are still the one, true Faith.’

    There are people who believe they are Charlie Chaplain. We allow for it. There is no reason to persecute or refuse someone a night in a hotel because he thinks he is Charlie Chaplain.

    ‘As long as we stick with the truth we can be fundamental about it.’

    It shows that with some practice you can end up sounding just like Fred Phelps.

    I did not see much in the way of truth when you wriggled and squirmed on the hook of your own making - justifying the murder of kids. And you don’t strike me as a bad person. Rather, as Steven Weinberg says, “Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it, you'd have good people doing good things and evil people doing bad things, but for good people to do bad things, it takes religion.”

  20. AM, (or is it FP?),
    'It shows that with some practice you can end up sounding just like Fred Phelps.'

    ‘Westboro Baptist (Phelps) refers to Catholic priests as "vampires" and "Draculas" and talks of Catholic priests sucking semen out of male children's genitals like vampires suck blood from their victims. In addition, WBC calls Pope Benedict XVI such epithets as "The Godfather of Pedophiles" and "Pervert Pope". In April 2008 the WBC protested Pope Benedict XVI during a papal visit in New York City.
    The WBC launched a website called Priests Rape Boys in which they criticize the Roman Catholic Church because of the Catholic sex abuse scandal, saying, "Every time any person gives any amount of money to the Catholic Church, that person is paying the salary of pedophile rapists."
    The WBC describes the Roman Catholic Church as, "the largest, most well-funded and organized pedophile group in the history of man" ‘

    Are you SURE you are not Fred Phelps, Anthony? You haven’t been stealing his ideas, have you?

  21. John,

    Fred is ok. Leave him alone. Picking on him coz he is a Protestant!!

  22. Anthony Phelps,

    You are so busted!


    Oh what company you keep in the Irish branch of the westboro Baptist Church!