Eoghan Harris: Uneasy riders who do not understand the Republic
Published 16/10/2011 | 05:00
"We cannot prevent the blackbirds of evil flying over our heads, but we can prevent them making a nest in our hair."
The Chinese proverb is a guide to good politics. We can't stop Martin McGuinness standing for President. But we can prevent him importing into the Irish Republic the tribal narratives of a minority of northern nationalists.
Martina Devlin, in the Irish Independent, speaks for that minority: "I wish the civil rights movement could have brought about reform, but it was not effective -- unfortunately, I don't believe advances would have happened without the IRA campaign."