Because it's traditional doesn't make it right
Let's get a few points clear. The Orange Order has been the cause of civil disorder in Ireland since its foundation.
In 1813 Orangemen caused the first sectarian riot in Belfast. Repeatedly in the 19th century Orangemen forcing their way through Catholic districts resulted in scores of people killed, countless injuries and damage to property, mostly Catholic.
The only reason these consequences of Orange violence didn't occur continually in the 19th century is that the British government banned Orange marches by the Party Processions Act between 1832 and 1844 and 1850 and1872.
A British government commission in 1857 concluded that Orange festivals led to 'violence, outrage, religious animosities, hatred between classes and, too often, bloodshed and loss of life'.
That's the Orange tradition.
This tradition was maintained and improved upon in the 20th century when the north became an Orange state in 1921.
Orangemen instigated violent clashes in every decade – Belfast, Derry, Dungiven, Coalisland, Annalong, Portadown and so on, endlessly.
It's important to make this point because Orangemen and their NIO sympathisers have succeeded in peddling the lie that opposition to Orange marches began with Sinn Féin conspiracies in the 1990s.
Rubbish. There were disturbances in Derry and Belfast and Portadown in the 1970s.
There were huge confrontations in the 1970s on the Springfield Road at Ainsworth Avenue, literally a stone's throw from where the Parades Commission forced the Orangemen into the Catholic district last Saturday.
The Public Order Order (sic) was brought in in 1987 as a result of stand-offs in Portadown when Orangemen refused to abandon their traditional route through the Catholic Tunnel to march along the Garvaghy Road.
Yes folks, 20 years ago Orangemen were REFUSING to march along the Garvaghy Road. They thought there were more Catholics to intimidate in the Tunnel.
Given all this, it's truly sickening to hear Peter Hain say he hoped "people can exercise their traditional and cultural rights".
The logic of that nonsense is that he would support cannibals boiling someone alive in a pot or have widows in India burnt alive along with their husband's body.
Well, it was traditional wasn't it? Doesn't make it right but suttee was their culture.
This balderdash from our proconsul may show he disconnects his brain from his mouth when he's talking about this place. It also shows how successful Orange apologists have been in portraying their antics as 'cultural'.
The reality is anything but. They are the Ku Klux Klan marching through Harlem, the National Front marching along Brick Lane in London, or perhaps our proconsul would be more familiar with the concept of the Broederbond marching through Soweto?
Would he support that?
Then again, he has performed so many somersaults in his diverse political career that he might.
How could you predict which way he'll jump next?
He went so far as to regurgitate the NIO fodder he'd been fed that if 'both sides' were displeased, then the Parades Commission decision was probably right.
Wrong. It's not a matter of conflicting rights, as the British administration have sought to portray Orange marches.
Buried in the Good Friday Agreement is a little sentence guaranteeing 'the right to freedom from sectarian harassment'.
If sectarian harassment doesn't describe an Orange march in a Catholic district, what does?
Here's where the Parades Commission, now devoid of any credibility thanks to our proconsul's manipulation, confirms the cowardice of its decisions.
They begin with the presumption of the right of Orangemen to march, not the right of Catholics to live in peace and quiet, free from men marching past their homes who revere loyalist killers.
The Parades Commission's aim, as the NIO gameplan said in 1997, is to get 'Orange feet' on a Catholic street, in other words to keep the Orange Order happy.
Tradition doesn't enter into it.
The Parades Commission is now licensing marches in parts of Stoneyford where there have never been marches so that Orangemen can disturb the peace of Catholics who have never seen an Orange march and moved out to Stoneyford to get away from Belfast.
You can get away from Belfast, but thanks to the craven Parades Commission you can't get away from Orange intimidation.
Catholic family forced to move