Ian Paisley (1926-2014) and the ‘Save Ulster From Sodomy!’ Campaign

The death of Rev. Ian Paisley has been occasion for reflection upon the United Kingdom’s most firebrand, and certainly one of the most memorable and divisive, political figures in modern times. Paisley rightly will be remembered for his hardline and extreme unionist stance throughout his political and religious career. Northern Ireland’s society and politics have been synonymous with deep and bitter religiously orientated sectarianism, violence, conflict, militarism, and seemingly intractable community divisions since the late 1960s. And Paisley was the most vocal and most recognisable protagonist of its continued community divide. But the intractable oppositions within Northern Ireland appeared to come together in remarkable unanimity on one particular issue, which Paisley almost made his own: that of the reprehensibility of male homosexuality, and questions of sexual minorities in general.