Following her statement yesterday that abusive messages on social media about her party’s gay marriage policy would only strengthen her opposition, First Minister Arlene Foster has gone a step further by saying that all future DUP decisions will be shaped by the attitude of on-line trolls.
“From now on we’re going to look at ideas based on the number and content of Facebook comments,” she told The Ulster Fry. “If anyone thinks they’ll change my opinion by articulating their’s, they’re wrong – that’s not what politics is about.”
Her statement was immediately followed by a barrage of on-line abuse on a wide variety of subjects in the hope that Mrs Foster would react by doing the opposite of what they were asking.
“Make beer more expensive you big smelly politicians,” demanded Twitter user @I_Love_Beer. “I hate beer, and you stink.”
“The Union Flag should be flown on more days, you dicks” said @IRA1798 in a vicious on-line tirade, closely followed by “Let’s get the f**k out of Europe right now, DUP arseholes,” from @VoteRemain2016.
“Crisps are far too cheap, they should be at least 2 quid, you Fermanagh ganch” argued @Tayto4Life, and @BigGayStevie tweeted “The DUP are dickheads, so let’s make all the gays get married.”
However the DUP’s new “reverse psychology” method of policy making is also causing some confusion, “So when Ulster said ‘No’ did we mean ‘Yes’ or was it a double bluff ?” asked @KingBilly1690, “And are we meant to be for or against a united Ireland? This is f**king mental.”
So far, Mrs Foster has stayed quiet on the new demands raising concerns that her party’s attitude to gay marriage may not be formed by comments on social media at all, and that instead may have some kind of religious basis.
We asked the First Minister if this was true and she said no, so we’re not sure.