I’m not a fan of the Eurovision Song Contest. I know many are crazy about it. It’s the highlight of their year, akin to Christmas Day. House parties are held, crazy costumes are created, and insane drinking games invented as the country grinds to a standstill to watch the annual event. Plus it’s presented by the waspishly witty Graham Norton and who doesn’t love a waspishly witty Irishman. Ahem…
Ireland have a proud tradition of performing well in the event. Dana, Johnny Logan and er…that other one. The United Kingdom not so much. Ever since the heady days of Bucks Fizz winning it back in the day it’s become something of a standing joke that they regularly score poorly. The reason? Well, shock, horror, it appears the bullish Brits aren’t particularly popular with their continental cousins.
This year was no exception. The British entry registered the dreaded ‘nil points’ from rival judges ending up bottom of the leaderboard. Social media erupted with allegations of jury tampering, vote rigging and outright racism. How dare they snub the tub thumping, jingoistic little Islanders all over the small matter of Waterloo, Brexit and the English Channel. Ignoring the fairly obvious point that the British song wasn’t very good.
Northern Ireland is in turmoil over Brexit and the trade border that the British Government has created in the middle of the Irish Sea. This despite promising the unionist population that they would never commit such a heinous act which threatened Northern Ireland’s status within the United Kingdom. Boris Johnson told lies. Well, whatever next. Unionist politicians did not take kindly to being stabbed in the back.
So much so that they reacted by stabbing their own First Minister, Arlene Foster, in the back for not being extreme enough and allowing the whole sorry mess to transpire. We now have an even more treacherous leader in Edwin Poots; a God fearing, churchgoing man who is also a serial liar who doesn’t believe in dinosaurs and currently has the lowest trust rating amongst Northern Ireland’s political leaders. You genuinely couldn’t make it up.
They rioted in Belfast over Brexit and the trade border but, thankfully, no such scenes yet over Eurovision. Edwin and his dubious political cronies may perform wonders and turn matters around. I happily stand to be proven wrong and will eat my hat if that’s the case. But I have a sneaky feeling that come next May and the next elections the British Eurovision entry won’t be the only person scoring ‘nil points’ at the polls.