The use of chants such as 'Oh, ah, up the Ra' have to go in order to reconcile properly with the unionist community in Northern Ireland.
Columnist and podcast host Joe Brolly was speaking after some concert-goers sang the chant to the Wolfe Tones song 'Celtic Symphony' in Belfast on Sunday.
The Féile an Phobail festival has since been branded a "hatefest" by DUP Stormont representative Emma Little-Pengelly.
Mr Brolly told The Hard Shoulder the use of the chant could be to do with area of west Belfast.
"Part of it is giving a finger to the British empire and the machinery of the state," he said.
"I think also in relation to the IRA young people, who don't really understand what it was all about.
"You look at this: it's absolutely vibrant, it's joy, it's 'Oh, ah, up the Ra'.
"My son was at it and his best friend who is - as he describes it - half a Protestant.
"His father's a Protestant and his mother's a Catholic, and there they are bouncing up and down singing, 'Oh, ah, up the Ra'.
"So I think [for] a lot of younger people it's more a sense of identity, of saying, 'We had no army, we had no police, but what we had was the Ra and they stood up for us'.
"It's not for me".
'Who we were'
Mr Brolly said he believes the population wants to show it is no longer 'under the thumb.'
"I think there's a strong element of that going on in west Belfast now," he said.
"Here we are, a vibrant, young, well-educated population; we've come through The Troubles, we've had the legacy handed down and we will celebrate the IRA because they were part and parcel of who we were".
Mr Brolly said he believes there is no need for the chant anymore.
"In order to reconcile properly with people of good faith in the other community, something like 'Oh ah up the Ra' - for me - it has to go," he said.
"I understand that it's not a call to arms, and it's nothing like that anymore.
"Even though it's a dumb song and it's about graffiti on a wall in Glasgow, shouting 'Oh ah up the Ra' it must be depressing for people in the unionist community who've lost loved ones.
"It must be very hurtful and depressing, and honestly I think we're better than that," he added.
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