I've made it no secret that I'm supporting Dr. Anne McCloskey as a candidate in the forthcoming Assembly election on May 5th. Why? Quite simply, the Stormont parties have let the people of this city and beyond down time and time again. Some of these parties are so out of touch with the people on the ground they even voted to give the Tories the power to implement welfare reform. Kinda odd when you think that the parties here were calling for years for more devolved powers, yet at the drop of hat handed the reigns of power on welfare reform to a shower of gangsters.
This Tuesday's Derry Journal had an article about a Sinn Fein election billboard being set fire. Firstly I robustly condemn anyone torching a party's election billboard. More importantly that someone would torch a billboard on the gable end of a row of houses is stupidity in the extreme! What if that fire had spread?
Sinn Fein election candidate Raymond McCartney condemned the act as an attack on democracy, stating that 'This is an attack on the democratic process, political parties should be allowed to go about legitimate campaigning without intimidation or attack' – Well said Raymond – I for once agree with a member of Sinn Fein. If you are standing for election then you should be prepared to be challenged on your policies, on your track record, or lack of... if that is the case.
But here's the rub, for weeks there has been a sustained campaign against Dr Anne McCloskey on social media. This propaganda is being disseminated by people whose profiles have just appeared in recent weeks. What is also very noticeable is this dirty propaganda is then being shared by Sinn Fein representatives (elected and otherwise), paid employees, a Stormont advisor, the Derry Sinn Fein Chairman and even their very own director of elections.
The thing is I have the screen shots of these social media posts, and they can be easily produced if anyone would care to dispute, however I'm sure this rubbish can be put to bed now.
So I would say if Raymond is a man true to his word, he will join with me in condemning those, including those members, employees and representatives of Sinn fein who have been spreading this malicious claptrap. Sinn Fein have been calling on people for years to embrace the democratic process, yet now that people are, the very idea seems unpalatable to some, or maybe they're just not the democrats they'd like people to think they are. Time for Raymond and his party colleagues to step up to the plate, the ball's in your court Raymond.
On May 5th think independent, vote independent, vote Anne McCloskey!