by Stephen Miller
The Irish love to talk. A vast majority of the people I have encountered in Northern Ireland will gladly, unhesitatingly share their story and opinions with any willing listener. Late one night at a local pub in Derry I found myself in a conversation with a few young Irish men. They were a group of four who couldn’t be much older than twenty years of age. I eventually lead the conversation from discussing American football and Irish rugby to their experience of the troubles and the peace building process of their historical city. One of the young men, Michael, mentioned that time has distanced his generation from the troubles. He then revealed that he was a Protestant but two of the friends he was with were Catholic. Over-hearing this, Michael’s friends began to playfully joke together about how one religion was superior to the other. I laughed. It was refreshing to see the youth of Derry breaking the bonds of former societal norms to maintain healthy relationships with each other.