What’s in a name?? A Lot When You Are a “Special Envoy”
Today Boston College will host a visit to McMullen Museum from Trevor Ringland who has taken on the title of "Special Envoy from Northern Ireland to the United States".
The title evokes the memory of many US Presidential Envoys to Ireland. But wait who is Trevor Ringland and who appointed him to this grand position.
Mr. Ringland is a former rugby international and a former member of the Ulster Unionist Party and British Governments Conservative party.
The British Conservative party does not have one member elected to the Assembly or Government in the North of Ireland. The Assembly and Government in the North did not appoint Mr. Ringland.
He was appointed by a British Secretary of State, Brandon Lewis.
Lewis is elected in the English constituency of Great Yarmouth, far removed from Belfast and Ireland.
At the time of the appointment of Trevor Ringland, the joint head of government in the North Sinn Féin deputy President Michelle O’Neill said,
“Brandon Lewis’ decision to unilaterally make such an appointment directly relating to the North’s interests and priorities without consulting the democratically mandated Executive smacks of Tory arrogance and disrespect.”
Trevor Ringland is a representative of the British Government, appointed by a party that has no mandate in the North.
Writing to Boston College, Neil Cosgrove of the AOH invoked Abraham Lincoln,
“Abraham Lincoln is said to have once asked, "If you call a calf's tail a leg, how many legs does it have?" When the listeners responded "Five," "Lincoln replied, "No, because calling a tail a leg doesn't make it so." Sadly, the same is true for Mr. Ringland, calling him a "Special Envoy from Northern Ireland to the United States" doesn't make him one.”
Adding Neil wrote,
“We have no objection to Mr. Ringland speaking, but Boston College should not be a party to calling "a tail a leg" and make crystal clear for whom he is speaking. We respectfully ask that Mr. Ringland be correctly identified at your presentation.”
So let’s end the pretense, there is no five-legged cow, and call the appointment for what it is, “The British Governments Special Envoy To The US”.
Then people will be clear as to who Mr. Ringland represents and the policies he will promote.