What do you think of when you hear the name Ireland? Ireland is a relatively small island off the coast of Great Britain with a land area of 32,424 square miles (Delaney 2). There are several things that you may associate with this country such as St. Patrick’s Day, shamrocks, beer, and strife. The source of the bitterness behind this conflict began centuries ago, when Britain came over and forced Protestantism on the Irish Catholic inhabitants. For this reason there has always been an animosity between the Protestants and the Irish Catholics. The island is broken up into two distinct regions. The Republic of Ireland consists of twenty-six counties, which make up the southern region. This area is predominantly Roman Catholic. Northern Ireland is made up of the six northern counties, which are under British rule and predominately Protestant. Both sides use propaganda to spread their ideas and gain support. They each have organizations, such as the I.R.A., in the south, and the U.V.F., in the north, which use peaceful methods such as newspapers and murals along with violence to fight for their cause. In Northern Ireland the Protestants used their position in the government to spread anti-Catholic propaganda and persecute the Catholic citizens.
One way the Unionists, supporters of British rule whose majority is Protestant in faith, used the church is to help spread their anti-Catholic propaganda. Some Protestant ministers such as the Reverend Ian Paisley used pulpit to express his opinion.
Catholics. Once while preaching in Belfast, the capital of Northern Ireland, Reverend Paisley “calls down contumely on the head of Pope and Papist whom they feel are working to overthrow the constitution in Ulster” (Coogan 3). Another influential man, the Minister of Home Affairs, Richard Dawson Bates, is quoted as saying that he has the “conviction that Catholics were rebels, real or potential” (Fraser 6). Although this method of spreading...