Having kindly linked to yesterday's post about the Act of Settlement, Martin Kelly writes:
"Destroy the Act of Settlement, and you are over two-thirds of the way to destroying the Union. Whether independence would be a good thing for Scotland's Catholics is a matter over which I have grave reservations."
We have not yet seen it fully in England, although we will soon enough, but it has long, perhaps always, been the case in Scotland and Wales that Catholics are at least as Unionist in relation to their own parts of the Kingdom as Ulster Protestants are in relation to theirs. And for the same reason: Catholics have no more desire to go down the road of who is or is not "really" English, Scots or Welsh than Ulster Protestants have to go down the road of who is or is not "really" Irish.
When it comes to the Union, the Protestant Succession is part of the deal, simply as a matter of fact. It is a price we pay for other things, things that we value and on which we depend.
Even in Northern Ireland, voting for candidates and parties is one thing, as is voting for something that you know is not going to go through. But who on the Falls Road is ever really going to risk casting the vote that brings about their own transfer out of the United Kingdom and into a country where you have to pay to visit the doctor? No one.
Unless, that is, the people of the Shankill Road are incited to some sort of retaliation for the repeal of the Act of Settlement.