If You Tolerate This…
Football has long been a haven for the nastier side of human behaviour,the type that hides in the shadows and only shows its face when in large groups of like-minded peepil. A large section of the population have been subjected to their outpourings of hatred for well over a century,even as most members of society have learned the error of their ways and agreed to live and let live.
After all,everyone is equal in the eyes of the law.
Celtic supporters,for example,are vilified because of the type of school they attended-even when many of us attended the standard non-denominational ones. Or because of our Irish heritage-which many of us don’t have. Or for engaging in sexual crimes so horrific that to accuse someone of such a thing without a shred of proof should be an automatic jail sentence. Instead of which,our accusers are given police escorts everywhere they go-even during an official lockdown!-and then permitted to commit acts of violence,vandalism,thuggery and various other criminal deeds.
Including their rather marvellous rendition of The Famine Song within arm’s length of the escorting police officers,a little ditty which is proscribed under European and Scottish law,and officially deemed racist.
As usual,the police responded with mealy-mouthed platitudes which merely pay lip service to the duties they are supposed to perform in order to uphold the law. A few days later,they arrested THREE peepil,out of the hundreds there at the time. Similar to their response to the George Square fiascos in March and May-and 2014,come to that-neither of which have yet seen anyone appear in court.
For once,some of the Scottish media have been upfront in their reporting of events,while others such as the BBC should be taking a bloody good look at themselves as they continue to ignore it. The Daily Record,in particular,has been very proactive on this,publishing the story on Monday and following it up with an article by their columnist Annie Brown which really went for the jugular. You can read it here…
Comments have been made on the subject in the Scottish Parliament,and the condemnation has been almost universal-though one party in particular has been deafening in its silence on the subject.
Additionally,we have learned that an attempt to ban ornj walks in Dumbarton over a decade ago led to death threats against council members,and that two of the three podcasters from soo’side official media partners have resigned their posts following revelations of past racist tweets. Makes you wonder how long all this information was suppressed,and why,but everyone loves a convert,eh?
Sadly,I suspect that the outcome of all of this handwringing will just be more of the same,simply wait for the furore to die down. Look,for instance,at the outcry a month ago when Millwall fans booed their own players for “taking the knee”. UPROAR-for a day or two,then wrapping the fish suppers after that. And as victims of the racism,we are to blame for not holding the authorities over the fire,demanding that the law of the land is applied equally to all,without fear or favour. But the blame lies first and foremost at the door of those authorities,for they are the ones invested with the power to actually do something about it.
And in that,they have failed for far too long.
They have overtly encouraged the actions of the many who espouse these opinions,sing these songs,spray hate-crime graffiti everywhere you look. Appeasement has never worked-anywhere-and Scotland’s politicians,police and football authorities need to stamp on this cancer immediately,years too late though immediately may be. Otherwise,they can just hand them all a Get Out Of Jail card every time they open their mouths.
Scotland has its own leetle problem with racism,but other countries,their football fans in particular,are more traditional in their intended racist targets. Hungary,and a number of their neighbours,have a long-standing record of appalling racism against visiting black/brown players. On Wednesday it was the turn of the England players to get it in the neck,and the media was predictably in full flow calling for action against the individuals involved and also against the Hungarian FA.
Quite commendable,and absolutely correct. But it soon came to light that Hungary had been told to play its next three home games behind closed doors,after similar transgressions at UEFA 20/21. So why the full house?
Unbelievably,the ban was imposed by UEFA,while Wednesday’s game was held under the auspices of FIFA. So therefore it did not apply.
Bugger me backwards,it’s like the blind leading the blind here. As in Scotland,nothing will ever change unless there is a coordinated action by all the authorities involved,and a clear desire to enforce any sanctions or punishment.
Truly we are fans of The Beautiful Game. But there is at its core a heart of darkness which we have to remove. If that includes prison terms,or even attending police stations for the duration of matches,then so be it. If it means banning clubs or countries from competition,I say go for it. People might be surprised how quickly such events are stopped,as the culprits realise that there is a real risk to them. And the sooner,the better-
“Pour encourager les autres!”
Above article by BMCUWP