The Shared Ireland team would like to say, comhghairdeas to an esteemed member of our group, on the birth of his first child recently. Delighted to hear both Mother and son (8lbs 1oz) are doing well. Hope you are enjoying your paternity leave.
This news got us thinking. Thinking about this baby boy and what Ireland will look like as he goes to cast his first vote in 18 years time, 2038.
- Will it be possible he’ll have voted at aged 16 by then?
- Will compulsory voting for all residents be implemented by then like the Australian model?
- Which current political parties will have fallen by the way side by then?
- Will we still be using a manual count system or will an electronic version be in place by then?
- Will a single party be in government alone, or will coalition still be the norm?
- Will Sinn Féin and the Greens still be the only all-island parties?
- Or will others have realized by then, representing all citizens should be the order of the day?
- Will Arlene Fosters predecessor be Taoiseach in 2038 after a successful border poll?
- Will Ireland be back in the EU?
What will this Ireland look like?
Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Greens formed a government earlier this year. Micheál Martin was appointed Taoiseach first in a rotating system. One of his first pledges was the establishment of an Shared Island unit – rumours suggest this name came from our group Shared Ireland. We’ll take the compliment.
For many this had alarm bells ringing right away and cast serious doubt moving forward
From the outset Micheál made himself very clear when he refused to reappoint the only Northern Unionist representative in the Senate, Ian Marshall. For many this had alarm bells ringing right away and cast serious doubt moving forward about Micheáls intentions, and was his proposed Shared Island unit only lip service in some elaborate PR stunt? What message did this send out to the Unionist community? A Shared Island is for everyone and by deliberately excluding Ian, the wrong tone was sent.
As we approach the last quarter of 2020, Micheál’s new Shared Island unit is as far away as ever it seems. A Shared Island unit is required to plan, prepare and discuss any new Ireland. This unit’s establishment is long overdue. Until we see action from Dublin, a few questions remain regarding the future of our new arrival…
- Will our new Shared Ireland baby boy live in an open free society that caters for all citizens living on this Island equally?
- If he chooses not to live in a city, will his government provide him essential services?
- Will he have a right to express his sexuality without fear of discrimination or prejudice?
- Will he be able to travel all 32 counties and be treated as an EU citizen?
- Will he live in an Ireland free from sectarian bigotry? Free from religious control and dogma?
- Will his government provide a stable, prosperous and forward thinking environment to raise his children, or, will emigration be the only option?
- Will he experience an Ireland where colour, race or nationality isn’t the first thought in our mind?
- Will he be able to avail of an all Island public transportation system – infrastructure that link ports, cities, towns and villages, regardless of location?
- Will he live in an Ireland that fully implemented the principles of the Good Friday Agreement?
Martin Luther king once had a dream. We also have a dream, this dream is for our new Shared Ireland baby to realise his full potential. Let his country be an ambassador for visionary thinking, let him be proud of his political leaders and maybe one day, our new Shared Ireland baby will also inspire the nation.
The #SharedIreland team.
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