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Amongst the bears

Posted on May 28, 2016 by

I was born to be a Rangers supporter. I had no real choice in the matter. My father was a Ger, as was his father and his father’s father. I was accepted that as soon as I was old enough to be lifted over a turnstile I would attend Ibrox, faithfully.

ibroxreign

From 1964 (aged 5) I worshipped at the shrine of Rangers for almost three decades. Fortunately for me, my father was the least bigoted man you could wish to meet. His religions were the trade unions and Rangers. Because he wasn’t bigoted our next-door neighbour and dad’s friend used to take me to Parkhead to watch Celtic too, which I found thrilling as I was convinced the “Tims” could see right through me.

This caused me a bit of confusion at school, because some of my family were “Tims”. In fact my favourite aunty was a convert to Catholicism and was as devout and decent a Catholic as you will ever meet. The conflation of football and religion was as normal as the smog-filled air we breathed. It just was what it was. You were either Proddy Ranger or Timmy Celtic. It wasn’t to be questioned.

Except my dad questioned it, loudly and often. He tried to explain the wrongs of the situation to me many times. I remember asking him why he still was a Rangers man if he disliked the whole Proddy/Tim thing that went with it.

“They’re my team, son. The morons can’t change that”, he told me.

I accepted this dichotomy for quite a few years, or at least until I started attending Ibrox on my own and watched the rampant cretinism happening around me. My normal position in the Copeland was immersed in a sea of arseholes, some of whom came over on ferries from Northern Ireland to spew out unspeakable bile at anyone stupid enough not to be wearing a Rangers strip or scarf.

I grew increasingly uncomfortable with the songs, the chants and the hate. I had heard stuff at Parkhead of a similar type and my Celtic mates abhor it too. But at Ibrox it just seemed more… intense. Definite. Meant.

ibroxjacks

More than once I pulled up someone sitting next to me about the stuff they were bellowing. Either they just looked at me and shut up or it got very unpleasant as they questioned my “loyalty”. I spent more time listening to the chants and songs of utter hatred for “Fenians” than I did watching my team play. Eventually I just stopped going.

But even then I still supported Rangers as an armchair fan. Then something happened that changed my attitude totally. I had a son.

At first, like my dad, I assumed the boy was going to be a Ranger. Then I thought about it. There was no way I was going to take him to a game and spend endless hours explaining to him that what his fellow fans were belting out was “just a bit of fun” and some “tradition” that they maybe really didn’t mean, or maybe did, or not, at least not the good ones.

“How can you tell the good ones, dad?” was the future question that bounced around my head. The answer “The ones not singing” just seemed more and more pathetic.

nosurrenderulster

I resolved that he’d grow up to be whatever form of football fan (or not) as took his fancy. I also resolved that my half-hidden hypocrisy and plainly-turned blind eye was no use to either Rangers or me. I decided we would part company.

That was in 1992. I’ve been back to Ibrox once since then, as an away fan supporting tiny Stenhousemuir (for family reasons) on Armed Forces Day in 2013. My wife, myself and the rest of the small band of supporters isolated in a corner of a stand were subjected to non-stop venom, bile, foul-mouthed abuse and threats for the entire 90 minutes.

(My son’s girlfriend and her father came too but left at half-time, utterly disgusted at the things they saw and heard despite the home fans having an 8-0 win to enjoy.)

We also had the distinct privilege of witnessing a event supposedly about respect for troops and the dead degenerate into a farce, as some of those in uniform went to the Blue Order and danced and sang the same crap that had driven me away from Ibrox in the first place.

One particularly helpful RAF type came over to us to give us the benefit of his knowledge about how we were all “Bitter c*nts”.

afdibrox3

(Commendably, one Royal Navy Commander, who I believe was sent down from the stands, tried to break up this ‘celebration’ of all things blue, but to to little avail. The scenes were disgraceful and convinced me that my decision all those years ago had been 100% correct.)

afdibrox1

Recently and because of the troubles they’ve inflicted on themselves as a club, Rangers have decided to play the victim card. It would be funny were it not for the hypocrisy involved. The recent press release regarding the idiotic actions of stupid Hibs fans is a case in point.  It is at once hilarious and pathetic.

The great chant (stolen from Millwall) of “We are Rangers/super Rangers/no one likes us/we don’t care” rings a bit hollow these days. Perhaps they should be asking themselves why they are indeed, almost universally disliked within the Scottish game. Are all those supporters of all those clubs really just jealous? Is that it? Is there no fair justification at all for that resentment?

I still have mates who attend Ibrox. They’re good guys, and they’re just as ashamed of all the crap as I was. But even though they’re the majority, they feel intimidated into not challenging it, such is the brutal vehemence of the poisonous minority.

chelsealoyal

To my mind, the past few years have encouraged a problem that had until then been slowly dying away. The bitter knuckle-draggers have the upper hand again and there seems to be no will at the top of either the club or the SFA to change things. When faced with the evidence, they’d rather shoot the messenger.

When I posted the original version of this via Twitter yesterday, I had to take it down within hours to save my sanity and my blocking finger. There are quite a few decent and rational Rangers (or like me, ex-Rangers) punters who can calmly discuss the rights and wrongs, but they were the minority of replies.

Most of those I got were just mindless abuse: name-calling (‘Taig” and “bheast” were popular) or people saying I was a liar. But I’m no liar, just a guy who used to follow a team whose support don’t stop or challenge those sorts of scumbags.

My father did, and I thank him for it. But when angry hate-filled lunatics think nothing of posting Google Earth pictures of your house, as has happened to me, it’s not worth putting your life or family in danger over.

22sas

As a long-time atheist I’ve got no dog in this ancient religious fight. Sectarianism is beyond me and I don’t want in. I’m sick of the whole thing. Good luck to the many, many decent Rangers men and women in the years to come. You’ll need it.

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  1. 28 05 16 16:56

    Amongst the bears | speymouth

313 to “Amongst the bears”

  1. Big Jim says:

    @22specialairser had 2 previous accounts. @sasbangbangbang and @chosenfew_72

  2. Betty Boop says:

    And some say there is no need for the offensive behaviour at football legislation! Aye right. It might not be perfect, but, it is better than nowt if only used properly.

    I can’t understand apologists for this type of behaviour.

  3. gordoz says:

    Well said sir – totally concur

    Another former Ger supporter (gave up totally around indyref)

    Disgusted by the unionist morons masquerading as genuine football fans.

  4. Bob Mack says:

    Glad you spoke up Rab. This has been my experience as well. I too come from a mixed family with the same issues.

    What Rangers are trying to do at the moment is create a barricade if you like because retribution is coming in the form of an investigation by UEFA regarding the Section 12 resolution backed by the SEA who will also find themselves lucky not to be banned. Rangers can expect to be banned from European football for some time,which will screw up Kings plan,and he knows it.

    They have embarked on a programme of we are the victims and a siege mentality for when this all comes to the fore. The fans are being played for all they are worth.

    Some fans may object to the Rev posting about this,but I will ask you to remember being at Ibrox and try to tell me this is untrue.

    This also applies to some sections of the Celtic support especially in the past,though they have moderated somewhat in the last few years.

  5. gordoz says:

    I mean who in there right mind can stand all that Bloody ‘Union Jackery’ anyway.

    Turns yer stomach !!

  6. Iain More says:

    To quote

    “Good luck to the many, many decent Rangers men and women in the years to come. You’ll need it.”

    Indeed they will need it Rab. Most of my family are blue noses and those that aren’t are Dons fans. It is a mixed family religiously as well so bigotry of any kind isn’t tolerated.

    The same cant be said for my home town where it isn’t unusual for drunken knuckle dragging blue noses to look for fights even on Hogmanay with anybody that doesn’t support the Gers. I don’t even blame the drink because they are like that 24/7, 7 days a week even when sober.

    The vandalism done to Yes signs and to cars with Yes stickers on them during the Referendum can be placed entirely at their doors.

    Nearly all of my family have stopped going to Gers games. The decent folk are being progressively driven away. The ones that are left will need double the luck but I suspect all that will be left in the end are the rabid sectarian Yoon dogs.

  7. alexicon says:

    Good article Rab, I read every word, which is unusual for me as I normally skim over the top of any articles.
    I, in some way, had a similar upbringing, albeit with school friends who were rabid knuckle draggers at a very young age because of their father’s strong anti catholic beliefs.
    I even went to rangers games at a young age with them, to young to fully understand the words to the songs I used to join in with.
    Thankfully I grew out of that phase and have very little to to with football no stop.
    I have to say, in my line work in the O&G industry I have met many YES voting rangers supporters and this has given me the belief that, like you say, the bigots are in the minority.

  8. seanair says:

    Sorry to hear all this Rab. Us in Edinburgh don’t have a clue about how terrifying it can be to just live when you are “outed” by these numbskulls.
    I remember these British soldiers acting ridiculously but I don’t remember the punishments they got. Probably got promoted, when they should have been kicked out of the Army.

  9. slackshoe says:

    Stories like this make me glad I wasn’t brought up to be religious nor interested in football.

  10. heedtracker says:

    If the aftermath of losing to Hibs is anything to go by, next season is going to be hell on earth. Scotland has to ask why we have to tolerate them and the answer is we don’t.

  11. Juteman says:

    I worked with a guy whose brothers and father all were in the OO, and regularly went on marches all over Scotland and the north of Ireland.
    They all voted Yes. Figure that one out?

  12. Capella says:

    You have shown a great deal of courage and integrity with this article Rab. It’s up to the rest of us who want a decent tolerant Scotland to support you and your like-minded colleagues in whatever way we can.

    Any suggestions as to how we can do that?

    Certainly those posting threatening tweets have to be the subject of police investigation.

  13. peekay says:

    @Gordoz

    Yup, me too. Between the behaviour of the support over the club going tits-up and the indyref I’ve completely given up until there’s major changes. The thing I always noticed is just how few of the idiots actually had Weegie accents, they were invariably Belfast, Ayrshire or West Lothian. That in itself is part of the problem with Scottish football, it’s these idiots travelling past perfectly good football clubs(Killie, M/well, Airdrie, etc) to get to Ibrox-Parkhead because of some quasi-religious bullshit or just plain old glory hunting. I now occasionally throw myself into the epic joys of Pollok Juniors now.

  14. Bob Mack says:

    I remember taking my son to a Celtic match ,and the Soldiers song came inevitably.

    It went “North men south men comrades all
    Soon ther’ll be no protestants at all
    We’re on the one Rd singing a song
    Singing the soldiers song.

    When it finished my son who was eight at the time asked me why there would be no protestants. The guy in the next seat who had a fair drink in him leaned over and said ” We will have blown them all up”.

    I gave him dogs abuse and moved away.I am glad to say that much has changed these days as far as that stuff at Celtic park is concerned.

  15. mealer says:

    Every football fan,whatever their team,should be emailing their club and telling them you want a 3 point deduction for sectarian chanting.

  16. Peter Brunskill says:

    I’m English so maybe shouldn’t have a view, apart from my team Burnley having lost Joey Barton to Rangers this week.
    However some years ago I attended a Bradford City v Rangers friendly (!) to celebrate Leeds-born Scot Stuart McCall’s testimonial. I was astonished at the vile stuff coming from Rangers who were there supposedly to celebrate a former player. There were no obvious Catholic opposition (and certainly nobody expressing Republican tendencies) but nevertheless it was an unpleasant and threatening experience.
    I was convinced then that there was no way we wanted to import these idiots to the English football leagues.
    I hope Joey is ready for it, maybe he will soon be wishing he was back at Burnley. One thing for sure is that he won’t refrain from expressing his views on Twitter.

  17. HandandShrimp says:

    Rangers have had some great teams over the years and the football has never been a problem. The religion/politics crap on the stands (by both sides of the divide) is just lamentable. It means nothing to me.

    I have never taken my kids to a football match. I have taken them to Murrayfield to see rugby matches and it has always been a great day out. No trouble, little in the way of swearing even. Something that is genuinely family friendly. Football has not been family friendly for a very long time even without the extreme bitterness of the old firm hatreds.

    Shame but I can’t see it changing. The recent letter from the bunker blaming the whole universe and everything in it for hating Rangers suggests that it will be hatred as usual when the league resumes in August. I can wait.

  18. Johnny C says:

    My time as a Rangers supported (and season ticket holder) came to an end in 1998 when I took my then girlfriend to a game. I’d forgotten my scarf and she was Asian.

    We lasted twenty minutes of spitting, racism and threats.

    They’re all welcome to it.

  19. bobajock says:

    Almost identical to my experience. Equally as melancholy. ‘Sevco’ as they are now – no, I am not one of those “they are a new club” – its the fans that make a club, but … the fans are a broken sectarian record, full of bitterness and hate.

    My son will never need to worry about this junk.

  20. Finally pushed my way across the Apprentice Boys Walk at Glasgow Cross today. Gey auld apprentices if they husnae passes their apprenticeship after over three hundred years.

    Some gey queer shapes in Army surplus uniforms.

  21. The Isolator says:

    Well said Rab…although as a “travelling” Heart Of Midlothian fan the reception at Celtic Park is one to behold.From Taig and part time Proddie to DOB (Scottish version) in the space of some 7 miles is quite something.

    Scotland is indeed unique in it’s religious intolerance as it has no natural “boundaries”.
    Proddie or Tim areas although they exist are defined more by school attended.

    I read with interest the threads relating to last weekends cup final debacle.

    The Rev for me nailed it as always with his subsequent analysis but what struck me was the tacit acceptance of some posters that parading around our national stadium with union flags and Irish Tricolours was the norm.

    All so depressing in 21st Century Scotland.

  22. Brian McHugh says:

    There is a concern here, that the Indy Ref may indeed have woken up right minded people to no longer accept biggotry and religious sectarianism… but on the other hand, has also woke up more biggots, meaning that the concentration of idiots at certain football grounds may have increased.

  23. Noel Darlow says:

    The really disturbing thing is that some labour councillors and tory MSPs seem keen to nurture political support from a group of people who are not much different from brown-shirted fascists.

  24. My one and only visit to Ibrox was many years ago as a fourteen year old St.mirren supporter.. St.Mirren one that day and on the way out from the ground I was kicked around the legs, spat at and pushed.. I was advised to hide my scarf till well clear of the area..I was born Protestant, thankfully into a family of non bigots in Paisley, my father was a Motherwell supporter, as that was his home town. Was a great belaiver in supporting your home town team. I am totally amazed at the distance some people travel to an old firm match just to spout their venom at whatever team they are playing.Sectarianism is the greatest divide in this nation of ours.. Many of those thugs aren’t even aware of their history and what their illustrious “King Billy” did to their own fellow countrymen.. They have dragged our nation into the pits of hell.. and you know what.. It is encouraged by the so called union.. I’ve said enough..

  25. Helpmaboab says:

    A fine article. The author writes with his usual skill and insight.

    Happily I’ve spent my life distant from the hate-filled, aggressive loyalism described here. But I often wonder whether, if I hadn’t been so lucky, I might have become part of this ugly subculture.

    I also often wonder whether, like Rab, I would’ve been brave and free-minded enough to reject such a flawed “tradition”. I’m not entirely sure that I would…

  26. Proud Cybernat says:

    Bravo Rab. Well said indeed. More and more ordinary people in Scotland are saying “enough is enough” and are not prepared to tolerate this hate and poison in our society. Why exactly do these knuckle draggers desire to be up to their knees in fenian blood? Why? What good will that do them or anyone else in our society?

    I think these bigoted intolerants blinded with hatred will drive more and more decent and genuine Rangers fans away from the club and where will the club be then? More and more ordinary Scots have to tell these idiots we don not want your bigotry or your hatred. We reject the Ulsterisation of Scotland. We reject your songs of hate. YOU may well be the Peepul but WE are the PEOPLE and we say NO to your bigotry and sectarianism.

    But I realise this is all pretty much a forlorn hope. These ‘peepul’ are just too thick and filled with bile to ever see just how much of a collective arsehole they really are. They’ll never see it, never change.

  27. Croompenstein says:

    It doesn’t help that the oldcos legends play to the ‘no one likes us’ mantra. I mean Walter Smith stokes the fires by talking absolute pish about demotion and relegation, your team died you sad old bastard and you sat and watched it happen don’t blame anyone else.

    Big DJ loses the rag on radio when it gets pointed out that Glasgow Rangers FC died in 2012. Why can’t they face the truth that no one else fucked Rangers, Rangers fucked Rangers..

    Someone wants to tell that fucknut Regan at the SFA that we are now facing armageddon as the Bears play their first season in the SPL with an almighty big fuckin chip on their shoulders. It has to be zero tolerance from all decent Rangers fans and everyone else connected with the game we don’t want this shit anymore..

  28. slackshoe says:

    Also, this reminded me of a great blog post from Limmy a few years ago. Since deleted, but preserved on archive.org. Well worth a read.
    http://web.archive.org/web/20100228180432/http://www.limmy.com/blog/2010/02/25/the-bible-a-history-with-gerry-adams-2

  29. heedtracker says:

    Rangers have had some great teams over the years and the football has never been a problem. The religion/politics crap on the stands (by both sides of the divide) is just lamentable. It means nothing to me.”

    Some paid for with a tax loophole dodge, employee benefit trusts. They were effectively buying better players than they could afford and it went on under the ownership of a billionaire.

    But the billionaire owner could clearly afford to pay the going rates, so why did they use this employee benefit trust dodge and why did it take HMRC over a decade to even look at Rangers tax arrangements? We’re heading for real trouble in August.

  30. david murdo says:

    Thank-you Sir

  31. Mik Johnstone says:

    exactly the same here, i Supported Rangers in the 80’s and early 90’s watching Butcher, McCoist, Souness, and Woods and the rest of the boys giving us “real” fitba, that was when they were a real team, and singing rubbish was permitted, i got sick of it too and just “went off” fitba never bothered with it again except for Internationals, The Teddy Bears (Pt2) are now a sick joke and no even a shadow of what they used to be, their bile is not needed in fitba, Nor is it needed in a progressive Scotland, if no one is listening to real fans, then everybody should join with the real fans and start banning idiots from the fitba grounds, or get the clubs to do it with large fines if they are non compliant, to the Clubs & Guilty Supporters,
    Hibs last weekend as far as i was concerned, were only celebrating. I’m still waiting to see the Rangers players that were accosted and set upon by the screaming masses of Hibernian Fc, i do however remember the rangers chant being prominent and the Hibs fans being off the pitch very fast whilst gers fans were there a LOT longer… fitba is BETTER than this…

  32. Tombee says:

    I really do hope I am mistaken here, but I am I correct to think I see British Army in uniform,giving Nazi salutes at the front of one of those pics ?. I hope I’m mistaken.

  33. mogabee says:

    As a 21 yr old Englishman living in Scotland for only a short time in the early 70’s, my partner went along to watch a football match..or so he thought!

    He left knowing he would not/could not ever watch a football game which included rangers.

    We have gone to many football games over the years, including following Gretna and have quite often taken our daughter. Not once have we ever felt threatened…and THAT’s how it should be.

  34. DG says:

    Lol – check out 22SpecialAirServices time line – He claims to be one of the S.A.S. guys who shot the IRA in Gibraltar.

    Comedy gold, I cant stop laughing!!!

  35. Jimbo says:

    The bitter knuckle-draggers have the upper hand again and there seems to be no will at the top of either the club or the SFA to change things. When faced with the evidence, they’d rather shoot the messenger.

    Yes indeed. It’s well past time the SFA, the media and the club itself took a stand.

    I often wonder if the sponsors of this club give pause for thought as to who and what they are sponsoring. Maybe people should let it be known that that they will refuse to buy the brand of any company that sponsors sectarian bigotry in Scotland.

  36. JLT says:

    A very good article, Rab.

    After the events of last Saturday’s cup final, I believe some of the points that you have raised within your article touch on some key issues that now afflict Rangers.

    Rangers have returned to the Premier League, but not in the sense of a triumphant club restored to a position of power where they have righted their wrongs and therefore should be accepted back into the fold once more.

    No. What we have seen in the last week (as Rab says) is the ‘victim card’ getting played. Rangers have returned to the Premier in a way that could only be considered bitter, poisonous and divisive. This does not bode well for the league.

    There will a section of the Rangers fans, and possibly even the Rangers board, who will now be determined to find fault with every other club in Scotland; a club has a problem with tax – punish them screams Rangers; a club by accident has messed up the registration of a player and they have played a couple of games – punish them screams Rangers; a club can’t play a game due to a frozen pitch causing a league fixture backlog – punish them screams Rangers; A section of fans sing idiotic songs – punish them screams Rangers; a spokesman for a another club makes a scathing comment on a football issues – punish them screams Rangers

    …you get the picture.

    And this is what possibly awaits every other club in Scottish football. Should Rangers FC carry a cross of their own making throughout the entire Scottish game, then other boardrooms will look on in bemusement at the continual cries of bitter accusations of ‘unfairness’ while the SFA watch on unsure of what to do.

    But if allowed to fester, it will come to head. At some point, the bitterness will overflow and something will happen. Whether it’s another pitch invasion or a blood and thunder game that erupts into violence both on and off the field …something will happen.

    Whether Rangers are a victim of what happened 3 or 4 years ago can be debated. But there appears to be a fair percentage of fans at Ibrox that are spoiling for a fight over what happened with the club being expelled from the Premier League. It is this that should be worrying every club in the land …and especially the SFA. What sort of fan is going to turn up at their Club when Rangers arrive? What are families going to be exposed to? If the worst should come to pass, and Rangers FC do carry this new level of bitterness and rancour along with their own fans, then it is up to the rest of the Scottish clubs to tell the SFA to curb it quickly. If the SFA fail to do just that …then the other clubs at the very worst …should vote Rangers right out of our game altogether.

  37. Takhisis1 says:

    Great article Rab.
    I am of a like mind, I grew up a life long rangers fan but was never allowed to go to ibrox when I was a kid, could only go to Partick thistle as a lot of my mum’s family were and are still fans.
    I stated going to home games in 2008,street having graduated from uni and having disposable income for the first time. I always refused to sing the songs as they aren’t part of who I am and all honesty, should not be allowed.
    I remember my first cup game at hampden, and I felt sick with a guy two seats doing the red hand of ulster. Since then I never went to a Celtic game, giving my season ticket to a friend of my sisters.
    I am now someone who will always be a Gers fan but I don’t think in good conscience allow any potential kids of mine to follow in my footsteps.
    Maybe I will encourage them to be thistle fans or please my mum and raise them to be Dundee fans
    Again Rab, thanks for articulating something that I have been wrestling with since last Saturday.

  38. AhuraMazda says:

    Brilliant essay. Congratulations on being both brave and honest; those seem like increasingly rare qualities when it comes to this issue.

    Honestly, just excellent that.

    Every now and then you lose hope and then someone stands up to be counted and it’s fantastic.

    And what a brilliant platform we have in Wings where we know this will be given the attention it deserves.

  39. Meindevon says:

    If I was brave enough, a question I always want to ask the catholic hating Rangers fan is ‘So, whit kirk do you attend?’ Pretty sure most of them have never seen the inside of one since their baptism.

    I hope the SFA is getting sent this article. They MUST do something about this. Both clubs should be made to play behind closed doors.

  40. Paula says:

    If Rangers were in the US, they would be registered as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center

  41. Donnie McLennan says:

    Hi Rab,

    Similar journey to my own except t come from Inverness so the tradition and background differs.

    What did it for me was seeing them playing in Europe away and signing rule britania, waving union jacks and hollering Rangers and Catholics don”t go.

    As a nation Scots nearest and dearest culturally and socially are the Irish be they Catholic, Protestant, Muslim, Jew, Hindu or non, that Scots would wish to identify themselves as subjects of a foreign aristocrat baffles and sickens me.

    As for Celtic and their fans, when following Rangers, it was always pretty obvious Celtic fans had a decency about them so sadly lacking in Rangers.

    Following Rangers became like carry a handicap or dose of the pox that you could release at any minute, why hesitate?

  42. Itchybiscuit says:

    I come from a small north east fishing town and I have never supported any football club. It seems to me the further away you get from Glasgow, the more vehement the supporters. The Rangers fans in my small town were (and probably still are) chest-puffing thugs of the lowest order. They looked down on anyone who wasn’t a ‘Teddy Bear’. I put this down to them also hailing from a wee town and supporting one of the biggest teams in Scotland made them feel part of something larger.

    As for their religious affiliations, don’t make me laugh. The only time the majority go anywhere near a church it’s for a wedding or a funeral. Their bigotry is simply another outlet for their misdirected anger. Who they’re angry at and why is beyond me. I never could understand religious intolerance. Being an atheist bars me from even speculating – gawd is love, my arse. 😉

    Thanks Rab, for taking the time to help us all understand a little bit better.

  43. Dair says:

    I stopped going to games nearly 10 years ago. It wasn’t about bigotry back then, but it was the other “supporters” that drove me off. Le Guen was trying to make genuine changes to how the team played but the crowd just weren’t willing to give the team a chance to build a game. If they didn’t get non stop charge and rush football, they were booing their own side within 15 minutes.

    That was my last year with a season ticket. I’d pretty much stopped going before the end of the season and before the riots in Manchester. I’ve been back a few times since but the quality of the football just got worse and worse, the second Smith spell was poor, McCoist a disaster. The team bought crap players and played crap football.

    Under Warburton the team have improved a lot, play pretty attractive football. But as the article suggests, the recent years have hardened the bigot’s grip over the club. I don’t believe for one second that most of these animals in the stands are “90 minute bigots”. They are 365 days a year bigots and the venom and vehemence of their hatred is palpable.

    It’s no longer a minority (if it ever was), it’s the vast bulk of those who go to games and I don’t see that ever changing. I still call myself a Rangers fan but I don’t see myself ever watching a live game again.

  44. alexicon says:

    Noel Darlow says:
    28 May, 2016 at 4:21 pm
    The really disturbing thing is that some labour councillors and tory MSPs seem keen to nurture political support from a group of people who are not much different from brown-shirted fascists.

    Not only that, I hear that queenie is quite fond of a flute band.
    According to an OO member or two?

  45. seanair says:

    Tombee
    You are not mistaken. I can’t remember the game or when, but it definately happened.
    My point is that a curtain was thrown over the episode and NO ONE WAS PUNISHED FOR THEIR ACTION. If anyone knows anything to the contrary please let us know.

  46. Great piece, I’m a Celtic fan fell away for a few years, but it’s only when you step back you see the bigotry being served up in the name of football, we always said Rangers fans were always way over the top but for a long time we weren’t far behind them. The green brigade make a great atmosphere at HOME games but for a while they were getting out of control but thanks to a strong stance from the board who banned them they are starting to behave a bit better. At home the Celtic support are under a bit of control but away from home they seam to be taking bigoted pills are go crazy, saying that away from home they are being baited more as some of the other teams in Scotland can be as vitriol with there chants as anyone can. I took my wee grandson to a KILLIE game at home and the vile chants they could give out was as bad as any
    At Celtic PK or IBROX, I’m thinking of getting us a season ticket for the coming season by only if I can get one well away from the away support end. I know Celtic & Rangers are the leaders in vile chants especially in the past at Celtic PK but a lot of other teams support is just as bad, Celtic fans seem to realise there are plenty of great chants and songs to sing without being vile bigoted or ignorant

  47. Dunroaming says:

    I too was brought up in a mixed family, one side a priest and a nun the other Church of Scotland elders. Made not a difference to us – used to be taken to church on a Sunday morning by one Granny and find myself in chapel at teatime with the other one. I went because they went and nothing more. My dad and his brothers sometimes went to Celtic Park and conversely they also went to Ibrox if they could afford the entry – they just wanted to see good football. Years past and they stopped attending either stadium due to the sectarianism. My bother was never taken to a football game involving either of the old firm, but occasionally to see Thistle. When he was old enough to pay his way he went to Cetic Park and was unhappy with the behaviour, he also went to Ibrox and was horrified. He stopped going altogether. My nephew has never attended a game other than Thistle. I never gave it a thought until several years ago, before SEVCO, I was invited to a hospitality event at Ibrox when they were playing who knows who – not a footie fan. I couldn’t believe my eyes or ears at the vile chanting, swearing and behaviour. And some in the directors area we’re none too polite either. As far as I’m concerned, anyone involved in sectarianism behaviour, with singing or shouting crap should be locked away and banned from attending any footie, the club fined, lose points lost.

  48. Croompenstein says:

    @JLT –

    But there appears to be a fair percentage of fans at Ibrox that are spoiling for a fight over what happened with the club being expelled from the Premier League

    That’s one of the things that fills these morons with hatred. They were not expelled JLT the club and company were liquidated and under the rules had to reapply for an SFL license.

    In their arrogance they expected to be readmitted in the top league and were supported by the SFA in this endeavour. But sporting integrity won out against the cheats and they were readmitted at the bottom tier of the SFL and some say this was too accomadating.

    They had a perfect chance to clear the decks of the sectarian baggage when the club was reborn but instead turned on all and sundry with their venom and hatred and now the rest of Scottish football has to reap the whirlwind.

    Not expelled… expired!

  49. Capella says:

    If these were mujahdeen the fans would be arrested and the club banned as a terrorist organisation. Looking forward to being up to your knees in Fenian blood sounds like hate speech and incitement to violence to me.

    Why is it allowed to carry on?

  50. Brian McHugh says:

    I just want to say to the Rangers fans here, that it is people who used to support clubs other than Rangers & Celtic like myself, who have now given up the domestic game. (Still one on the Tartan Army 🙂

    The whole of the Scottish domestic game is diseased because of these problems.

    This atheist is long out of it and couldn’t be happier about that.

  51. Dair says:

    Croompenstein wrote They were not expelled JLT the club and company were liquidated and under the rules had to reapply for an SFL license.

    Ah back to this crap, perhaps its intentional and a way to encourage an even hardcore attitude of the Rangers support.

    The club was sold, legally and clearly, by the administrators liquidating the company. The established difference between a pheonix club and one where the club is sold by the administrators is well understood to anyone with a neutral viewpoint.

  52. Effijy says:

    We share a very similar story, except my Dad refused to have anything to do with his families undying support of the Gers.

    He extended the hand of friendship to everyone that he met
    and treated everyone the same way. It just didn’t fit when he questioned anyone’s ideas of superiority.

    Celtic were by far the more successful team when I was young
    and as young kids do, you want to support the winners.
    I was put in place by older Celtic fans that I could **** off as Protestants can’t support Celtic.

    I have been to both grounds on European nights and always been shocked at the hate and bile in a large number of fans, even when their local counterparts are not playing.

    I’ve had enough of them and feel intimidated to be in the presence of so many crackpots looking for confrontation.

    Haven’t been to a match in years, and no intension to do so ever again.

  53. kestral says:

    born and bred in glasgow……..mixed religion family..but never exposed to this level of catholic against protestant

    hey I had to ask what religion those in the green and white stripe or those in the blue supported…..I suppose I was lucky to not be brought up in hatred of another people…….now every time I see a kid in a football stripe……aged 3 I cringe

    I did go read up on it – the potato famine, king billy,bobby sands……I believe you must walk 100 miles in another’s shoes to truly understand them

    but it gets difficult to tell who has hurt who the worst….it’s easy to feel pain and associate with hurt and feel sympathy…..but impossible to side with either

    why

    because they are both hurting

  54. Meindevon says:

    O/T for those whose Saturday night is as exciting as mine…the Scottish Affairs committee has just started on the Parliamnet Channel re the EU and Scotland. Pete Wishart is chairing.

  55. Bob Mack says:

    @Dair,

    Please look at what you wrote and say it to yourself again.”The club was sold legally and clearly by the administrators LIQUIDATING the company”

    It was not sold as a going concern.

  56. Tinto Chiel says:

    “Shame but I can’t see it changing. The recent letter from the bunker blaming the whole universe and everything in it for hating Rangers suggests that it will be hatred as usual when the league resumes in August. I can wait.”

    Unfortunately, HandandShrimp, my team’s just drawn them in the League Cup, which starts in July. On the bright side, I’ll be on holiday so will miss the fixture.

    This was a brave but depressing article, Rab. One problem is that the decent Rangers fans are the very ones who know the depth of mindless hatred displayed by the drongos, making it difficult for them to do anything about it. Irresponsible and incendiary comments by Walter Smith blaming the other clubs for Rangers’ predicament will only make next season’s matches more tense, and the Redtops will stir the pot (as they have begun to already). On top of that, Tory and Labour politicians seem to be happy to fan the flames in a shameless way.

    I’ve got that sinking feeling. Every Saturday is potentially the 19th of September all over again.

  57. JLT says:

    Croompenstein

    Not expelled… expired!

    LOL …agreed …to a point!

    There was a vote when Newco were refused entry to the SPL. Newco. As STV put it at the time – ‘Rangers will not compete in the Scottish Premier League next season as clubs voted “overwhelmingly” against the membership transfer.’ (http://stv.tv/sport/football/109301-spl-clubs-vote-no-to-rangers-newco-at-hampden-meeting/)

    However …vote/no vote/expelled/expired …it is the one and same reason as to their anger and bitterness.

    And nothing will cure that anger except one thing; only with the utter destruction of Scottish football through financial ruin that will see other clubs written off into the history books; thus leaving Rangers to finally march off to the English game …will that fury finally be cured.

    I think many of their fans are looking to inflict the same ‘punishment’ of an ‘eye for an eye’ on the entire Scottish game.

    That is why the SFA should recognise the warning signals that we saw in the media last week that some within Ibrox are actually seeking to cause damage to our game any way that they can. Whether it is verbally questioning every decision made, or screaming for punishment the minute a club breaks a regulation.

    If the SFA do grow ‘balls’ …they’ll warn Rangers to rein their necks in or face the severest of punishments. If Rangers do intend to wreck our game, then expulsion is the only answer. Scottish Football at the top level proved it can live without Rangers; it can do so again.

  58. Socrates MacSporran says:

    Excellent piece Rab, well said.

    Living as I do in God’s Orange County, Ayrshire, I see a lot of the 24/365 bigots in their natural habitat. I have no idea how we eliminate them, but, they could certainly be driven from football, if Rangers FC, the SPFL and the SFA had the least interest in so-doing.

    I cannot see the current regime at the club taking action, they have, as several posters have pointed out, cast Rangers and their followers in the role of “victims”. In any case, sectarianism sells – season tickets, memorabilia and so on. They will do nothing to eliminate the outrageous behaviour.

    But, the SPFL and the SFA, their reasoning I cannot fathom. Back in 1967 Third Lanark went bust in circumstances similar to that which befell Rangers in 2012. They were allowed to die.

    The fact Rangers were actively supported to reform under the odious Green regime perhaps indicates, the majority of the SFA clubs feared life without Rangers. Perhaps, had Rangers been allowed to die totally, and any new “Rangers” begin life in the Lowland League – the bigots might have gone away from football. Although, it might have been, nobody would have wished to take over Rangers at that lowly level.

    IF the will existed along the sixth floor corridors of power in Hampden, Rangers would be told – every time your fans sing the Billy Boys, or such ditties, you lose three points, then the club would soon take action to get rid of the numpties. IF the misbehaviour happened in a cup-tie, immediate expulsion from that competition, or, if they lost the game in which the bad behaviour happened, a year’s ban. Again, the club would have to get rid of the numpties.

    Nothing else will work. Sadly, I do not see the will being there to make it.

  59. Ahuramazda says:

    lol @ Bob Mack

    I think you went to the same school as myself, Bob, where they taught us that liquidation means death for a company.

  60. heedtracker says:

    Why is it allowed to carry on?

    Divide and conquer.

    Also a lot of fact dodging.

    “I still have mates who attend Ibrox. They’re good guys, and they’re just as ashamed of all the crap as I was. But even though they’re the majority, they feel intimidated into not challenging it, such is the brutal vehemence of the poisonous minority.”

    Go to a Rangers game and its not a minority at all. Go with our tory chum Prof Tomkins, from Kent, who definitely is not trying to use Rangers for his own UKOK politics in his scotland region.

    Adam Tomkins MSP ?@ProfTomkins May 22
    The SFA and Police Scotland inquiries should be allowed to proceed, but I will be looking for answers to two questions –>

    Wonder what Prof T’s 2 questions actually are?

    Why cant we just go back to the glory days of the 70’s and 80’s officer?

    How can tory yoonster like me make the most of it Ruthy?

  61. Brian MacLeod says:

    It’s simple.

    The game should have to stop the instant that that sort of rubbish starts. The decision to be made by the Police, not the club.

    If there is any trouble, then the club should be suspended for a month.

    If they don’t like that, go back to Ulster and take their hate with them.

    I have never regarded Rangers or Celtic as Scottish, just vehicles for spreading nasty Irish sectarian hatreds.

    It’s time to reign them in forever.

  62. Robert Louis says:

    Excellent article, well done to the author.

    Meindevon at 516pm, nails it, pointing out that virtually all the clowns involved in this sectarian bigotry, including those in the orange lodge, have never been near the kirk. Ever.

    Yet, week after week they shout scream and hurl abuse based upon a religion of which they know NOTHING.

    It is, if anything, the ultimate personification of bigotry, or stupidity. Probably both.

    Until the management of both clubs, especially ‘the rangers’ decides to put an end to this, it will continue. It is hard to think their is anything other than tacet approval from the top down.

    They are Scotland’s disgrace. No wonder the English premier league wouldn’t have them.

    On another point, somebody above raised the question and I’m not sure if it was answered, in one of the pictures, is that British army soldiers doing Nazi salutes at ibrox?

  63. Andrew Morton says:

    I’m not a Rangers fan and not from Glasgow but I’ve come across these people a few times in my life and it has usually been an unpleasant experience. We used to have a holiday house in Aberfoyle (my wife inherited her parents’ house) and there was an ex Forestry Commission guy up the road who was a friend of her family. I knew he was a Rangers fan but it didn’t seem to be a big thing for him. He was an elder in the local kirk and always pleasant and helpful to us and one day he was using his chainsaw to help us cut up a fallen tree.

    It was 1985 and Hearts needed a draw at Dundee to lift the First Division title and even if they lost, Celtic had to win by five clear goals against Motherwell. In the event Hearts lost and Campbell Money, the Motherwell keeper let six goals past him (some uncharitable people have suggested it was deliberate as he was a Celtic fan). This had happened the day before and when I mentioned it he started an unbelievable, bigoted rant, “Campbell Money is a f*****g Fenian b*****d! These b********g Tims, rant, rant rant….”

    I was totally shocked and never looked at him in the same way again. It showed me that these attitudes lurk in more than just the knuckle draggers.

    On another occasion, I was shopping in Boots in Kirkcaldy High Street and came out intending to cross the road. To my surprise there was an Orange March coming down the road and for five minutes I was stuck on the wrong side. I’d never seen an Orange march before and I was outraged; what had this got to do with us and our way of life?

    Finally, I worked in Manchester city centre at the time of the Rangers riot. Fortunately I’d gone home before the violence started but the behaviour of the Rangers fans was disgusting during the day. I was embarrassed that my fellow countrymen were shaming Scotland in front of my English colleagues.

  64. Croompenstein says:

    @Dair –

    The club was sold, legally and clearly, by the administrators liquidating the company

    WTF!! try telling that to the creditors…

    http://archive.is/Yy6e3

    Rangers died and we didn’t get a new born butterfly we got Frankenstein’s fuckin monster. (apologies to Frankenstein’s monster)

  65. Mark says:

    For a long time I justified my support of Rangers as I had no real problem with the club, just the fans.

    It became harder and harder to identify as a supporter of Rangers. For my job I attend matches at all Scottish football clubs, and no where do I feel more uncomfortable than at the home of my supposed club.

    When the club is then indulging in dodgy tax practices, banning journalists, performing corporate coups, signing Joey Barton; you start to realise they aren’t much better than the fans.

    The Billy Boys is indeed ‘a catchy tune’, but it is a song that is the definition of hate speech. It glorifies death. I think Indy Ref played a big part in me renouncing my support of Rangers. I still do want them to win to an extent, I’m not sure that will ever die, but I don’t want to identify as one of them, be seen in the shirt or in the stand.

  66. Will says:

    Okay. Article makes a lot of points BUT please remember it’s the same across the road at Celtic Park. It’s not a one sided problem.

  67. Tinto Chiel says:

    Andrew: Celtic beat St Mirren, not Motherwell.

    Ronnie Anderson posted an example recently of what all decent fans are up against.

    Not pleasant, but instructive.

    https://mobile.twitter.com/Kieran_Celtic/status/734846217998499840

  68. Croompenstein says:

    @Andrew Morton –

    It was 1985 and Hearts needed a draw at Dundee to lift the First Division title

    Sorry to be picky Andrew but it was 3rd May 1986 a day etched in to the heart of every Jambo. And it was St Mirren who lay down to Celtic that day not Motherwell and poor Cambell Money wasn’t even in nets!!

  69. Capella says:

    Doesn’t corporate responsibility apply here? The clubs must make it clear to the fans that sectarian behaviour won’t be tolerated. Spell out the consequences. Be prepared to carry them out.

    If the clubs won’t do that, the SFA must spell out the sanctions to the clubs. Spell out the consequences. Be prepared to carry them out.

    If the SFA won’t do that then the Scottish Government needs a sanction such as fines, imprisonment of guilty officials etc. Who is paying for the policing?

    It’s as if they are the Mafia and everyone is frightened of them. Bullies only get bolder if they get away with it.

  70. heedtracker says:

    Comic relief. Hard core toryboy says, NOT reading buying tory press is a threat to civilisation. No kidding.

    http://archive.is/xL2WC

    “But if good outlets perish, and news and analysis is delivered largely via Facebook and Google, we’ll soon find out what a problem that is. Already, in the rise of the SNP in Scotland, Corbyn in England, the more extreme Ukippers, and Trump in the US it is evident that “Facebook media” is a serious menance to a healthy democracy”

    Typos are the tory twits too, unless menance is a tory word for something horrid.

  71. Fireproofjim says:

    Mark@6.40y
    The song Billy Boys does not just glorify death. It glorifies murder.
    It is as clear an example of hate speech as it is possible to imagine, and the police have a duty to stamp out this sort of thing.

  72. Dair says:

    Croompenstein,

    I think you don’t see the wood for your hate. The demands to call Rangers a new club despite all opinion, all football institutions stated position, that of other national instiuitions, including the Scottish Government, that it is the same club, transferred to a new company (as happens to many clubs without bankruptcy events), are the exact same hatred that you claim to stand against.

    Moreso, it actually entrenches the bitterness that has grown the depth of sectarian bigotry within Rangers support and perpetuates their sense of victimhood which they feel justifies their vile bigotry.

    Attempting to fight hate with hate is self-defeating nonsense. It’s not dissimilar to some views of the independence movement where those that campaigned or voted No should be considered scum and hated as ("Quizmaster" - Ed)s. You don’t convert anyone by victimising them and belittling them.

  73. DerekM says:

    I always remember my father dragging me out my grans house and telling her if she continued her sectarian nonsense then she would never get to see me again,which he stood by i would have been about 5 at the time,he cut all ties with his family to protect me from this.

    I was to young to understand about my father and my mother who he met on a tour of Ireland but not through football,my dad was a trampolinist,they married a year later which large parts of his family refused to attend because my mother was catholic and worse Irish.

    It wasnt until he passed away that i found out the truth about his young life and his indoctrination at the hands of the OO and funny handshake gang or that his family was high up in the lodge,when clearing out the attic i came across a box filled with OO and masonic stuff and a letter he had wrote to me explaining everything,the sash my father wore never got handed down and i will always be grateful to him for that.

    I would have been about 8 when he first took me to see the bairns play football,one day Rangers came to town and i wanted to go see the match so he reluctantly took me,it was a day i will never forget as his brother pushed his way through the stand to sit behind him,he then proceeded to call my father a feinian lover and me a half breed bastard feinan,well i have only ever seen my father violent once in his life and that was the day as he put his brother in hospital i do believe if the police hadnt dragged him off he would have killed his own brother.

    He was a big football fan loved the game and his proudest moment was when i signed at Dundee United unfortunatly due to my other sporting love of the 100 meters and a bad injury to my achilles tendon my football career never happened.

    Thank you Rab for stirring these old memories in me,i still have the box i keep it as a reminder of how different my life could have been if it was not for my old dad saying enough and removing me from the grasp of his bitter twisted family,love can conquer all prejudices.

  74. shiregirl says:

    I was brought up in Edinburgh. My Dad was a fully paid up member of the lodge and a die-hard Rangers supporter.

    We weren’t allowed to wear anything green. In fact, there was nothing green in allowed in our house. 12th July was a huge thing and my Dad would dress up in his sash and we would have a steak pie – a big thing then. Lodge meetings felt like an excuse for him to get pissed and start a fight with my Mum.

    Then I turned 16. I was warned that I was never to bring anyone Catholic to the house – I honestly didn’t understand any of this and didn’t dare ask why. I started to question his beliefs and what I felt was intolerance towards others. I was simply told that this was the was it was.

    I left home soon after. I have no interest in anything remotely bigoted and have friends whom have been Protestant, Catholic, Hindu – you name it! I feel sad for my parents.

    I no longer have contact with my parents. This is one of the reasons why.

  75. Neutral says:

    I am Scottish from an Ulster background. Like you Rab, my dad was a Rangers fan and so was my grandfather. My dad however did me a great favour when I was 12. He bought me a season ticket for my local club Dumbarton. People may change career, marriage partner, and home. They rarely however change their fitba club so here I am several decades later still supporting a wee club and it has been fun.
    I still have a wee bit of a ‘blue tinge’ in so much as I still feel a mild cultural connection and I have friends who are (decent) Rangers fans. Like you I’m an atheist but yes, I suppose I’m a proddy atheist. However, having been in the same league as Rangers for the last two seasons, I have seen these Union Bear/Blue Order eejits close up.

    Rangers, in their wisdom sat them next to the ‘away’ support. At one game, just before the Indyref, we were treated to ‘You can stick your independence up guy our arse’ ‘If you hate Alex Salmond clap your hands’ and ‘I was born under a Union Jack’. I thought it was perhaps progress that blind religious hatred seemed to have been replaced by simplistic political opinion.

    My daughter however crystallised the issue for me. “Dad I don’t like going there (Ibrox). It is so threatening.” The result was that we didn’t go to the final two Dumbarton games there. The last one was the clinching of the Championship for Rangers and I managed to watch a live stream of the game from ‘Rangers TV’ with John Brown as a pundit.
    He sounds as if he is beyond help but really, intelligent Rangers fans should take a step back and examine all the Ulster/proddy/unionist/lest we forget stuff and ask themselves how this baggage benefits a Scottish Football Club.
    My dad was friend of 40s Rangers player Jimmy Duncanson. Jimmy once wrote to the SFA in defence of a Celtic player who was, in Jimmy’s opinion, sent off unfairly. Despite the bigotry which has always been one strand of RFC, there was another which was a kind of ‘stand up straight/fair play/do the decent thing’ idiom. That might be an alternative to the nonsense. A way forward if you like. Anything else will propel them further backwards.
    If they follow follow that route, they will, I fear, wither and die.
    For real.

  76. Bob Mack says:

    @Dair,

    If you are the same club ,are you aware that if you lose the EBT case in the Supreme Court your team will be out of business permanently. The judgement is for over £40 million plus penalty fines and Rangers if the same entity would be liable.

    Also ,if Charles Green is deemed to have utilised fraud to obtain the club,then the club itself becomes the proceeds of crime and will be dealt with accordingly.

    Why do you think Mr King distances himself from the events of those days?

    He wants the Rangers name and support but not their debt,which would be considerable.

  77. Croompenstein says:

    @Dair –

    You don’t convert anyone by victimising them and belittling them.

    Again.. tell that to the creditors..

    http://archive.is/Yy6e3

  78. Dr Ew says:

    The absence of Old Firm matches in the last few years has been a boon to the West of Scotland and its victims of domestic violence, bigotry-driven assaults and A&E depts. Indeed Scotland is a very different place from 2012.

    Are we going to let them drag us backwards?

    I think not. The Rangers and their Neanderthal follow followers have no place in the future Scotland. I for one applaud all this talk of the Old Firm migrating to an English league. And may the door hit them on the arse on their way out.

  79. Inverclyder says:

    Barton did say on STV news during the week that he knew there was a healthy rivalry in Glasgow.

    I assume by healthy he means cancerous.

    I used to go to the pub and watch the Old Firm games in Greenock. The pub used to be a Rangers pub but over the years has become a Celtic pub. Not been back to watch the game there in many years. Never again, no more. It would always end up with a fight amongst the Celtic supporters in the pub with the police threatening to shut the place down if there was an more trouble.

    That and there used to only be around 6 taxis on in the area as none of the taxi drivers wanted to work that day as they were either too scared of the violence or attending / watching the game.

    Both sides are as bad as each other.

  80. Alistair Waddell says:

    I was taken to Ibrox as a small boy by my two older Rangers supporting brothers, but as i got older and wiser i was becoming a anti royal independence supporting atheist and found i had little in common with those on the terraces around me.

    I stopped going to Ibrox around the late seventies and as i had got married and moved to the West end i started supporting Partick Thistle as i still do almost forty years later, although i moved to and brought a family up in North Ayrshire my two sons are Jags fans with no time for bigots, so i can relate and empathise with what Rab has gone through.

    Glad to read i was not alone in walking away from the bigots.

  81. Davros says:

    Great article, as a (lapsed) Protestant Celtic fan, have met a few now largely equally lapsed Rangers fans, most of whom were fairly decent people…

    But the extreme stance taken by a sizeable minority(if not majority) is showing them up for what they really are.
    Especially when they host ridiculous events like AF Day.

    Know Tims aren’t universally popular but hopefully 99% of our fans would never stoop to the depths chronicled by their Zombie nation!
    Too much to expect all mind, sadly.

    Lastly, re.the North of Ireland as a nationalist, as numerous have said previously this is a result of ‘Divide-and-rule’ practiced globally by the Brit Establishment.
    Hence the extreme stance chronicled in certain quarters.
    🙁

  82. ScottishPsyche says:

    This really is Scotland’s shame. Like others, I have memories of events which seem inexplicable to people not from the central belt.

    Going into Glasgow city centre as a teenager and being stuck on a bus as the OO did a walk. As the buses then were ‘green, white and gold’, the bus got hammered and jostled as they walked past. They stopped and surrounded the bus with no one able to get off. The noise was terrible and the fear absolutely palpable. It was all about menace.

    After living abroad for a few years I came back to visit and unfortunately got on the Underground on match day with my 2 school age children, one dressed in a green T-shirt, As the crowds got on comments started about a child who was only 5 years old. They were unrepeatable.

    This is why when people say the SNP have caused division, I think they don’t know what they are talking about. Until this boil is lanced we cannot move on. And pathetic Yoon journos talking about ‘Ulsterisation’ only makes it worse.

  83. Davros says:

    Good point about their debt.

    If this Rangers are the same as Oldco with their tainted trophies, then far more importantly they MUST take on their debt, or at least make the likes of D.Murray also liable.

  84. JGedd says:

    Don’t follow football at all but as a life-long atheist, I have to say I have encountered bigotry from both sides and it was equally unpleasant.

    However, all three of our sons attended Catholic school and emerged as atheists, not ‘indoctrinated’ at all!

  85. Achnababan says:

    My parents often ask me why I left home to go to Aberdeen to study for my degree. There were a few reasons, but escaping bigotry and the Old Firm crap was one of the main ones…. and I come from Stirling!!

  86. Dr Jim says:

    I vowed I would never talk on this subject again, so I’m breaking my own rule one last time

    If you stick your fist up and shake it at someone they’ll shake theirs right back, If you shout Bad at someone they’ll shout worse right back

    There are no innocents here, the press is guilty, the TV is guilty, the Internet is guilty, of using the same dispute in order to keep that same dispute alive by feeding it oxygen to survive and the population falls for it

    Here’s an Idea, stop writing about it, stop talking about it create a situation where it doesn’t exist and leave it to die in it’s own vacuum, or does everybody stupidly keep saying “Something needs to be done” till the end of time when deep down we know that nothing much will ever change unless the people begin to deny the Sectarianists the air to breathe

    As long as people turn up to see and hear the spectacle of Religionists arguing about unprovable mythical super beings rules of how and why they should be worshiped by the gullible then they deserve the right to be Arseholes, but folk with half a brain don’t need to help them do it

    I’m doing it now which makes me as stupid and gullible as everybody else and that’s how “public”ity works by making an Arse of the “public”

  87. One_Scot says:

    Great piece Rab.

    ‘But even though they’re the majority, they feel intimidated into not challenging it, such is the brutal vehemence of the poisonous minority’

    I can’t help from feel that the British establishment are more than happy for the continuation of this situation. It really is a shame that in Scotland so few are holding back so many.

  88. The Rough Bounds. says:

    I used to attend Rangers matches many years ago as a supporter. I got sick of the chants. I was also sick of Celtic and the whole Labour/Celtic scene.

    I met a chap at the Gaelic college in Skye. He had been a Celtic supporter, but like me, had become sickened of the whole Rangers/Celtic ‘thing’ and had just given up altogether on Scottish football. He became instead interested in Scotland’s languages and culture.

    What a shame our country has to suffer this drip feed poison from both of those teams.

  89. Craig says:

    nice article rab.

    im sick of all the bigoted guff, I’m a hibs fan and a protestant but the amount of times I’ve been called a fenian etc from certain sections of rangers support is astonishing, imo there is no need for this kind of crap in this day and age.

    i appreciate that not all rangers fans are like this but sadly from experience they are in the minority. i don’t blame you for turning your back on it bud, i know if my team were like this then i wouldn’t be showing my support to them either

  90. Bob Mack says:

    @Dr Jim,

    I’m sorry to disagree with you. This subject has for all of my life been starved of truth ,and instead given the euphamism of Old Firm Rivalry. This can involve serious injury or even death.

    It is utterly implausible to think that because it is ignored it will somehow go away.It just won’t.

    We have to make it clear with no room for doubt that there has been enough and those clubs who do not stamp on it severely will face punishment.

  91. crisiscult says:

    great article; tbh I think there are plenty of people the world over who would reject progress and being set free because they can’t imagine life without their anchor: their bitterness, their anger, their addiction to seeking or creating hatred of themselves so they can return to a cycle of bitterness and anger. Think about it: I need to protect myself from my enemies; there are those who seek to destroy me; build the walls men for if we don’t defend ourselves we’ll be destroyed; the system is against us; we must fight and so on and so forth for eternity.

  92. DerekM says:

    @ Dr Jim

    Sticking our head in the sand and pretending it doesnt happen is not the answer Jim we have already tried that,we must confront it and educate our kids to think better that is the only way to slay the dragon,i am living proof of that.

  93. ScottishPsyche says:

    @Bob Mack

    I would agree it has to be faced up to. The respite from Old Firm matches made it seem things were getting better but they were just festering away.

    With no alternative proposed by the opposition with regard to the OBFA, this behaviour has to be confronted. Decent fans, like Rab and others, have tried but to no avail. There are young people being indoctrinated into this lifestyle at this time.

    Cynical unionist politicians are allowing and even encouraging it by conflating independence with sectarianism.

  94. Thistlekitten says:

    I grew up in Falkirk, and I still remember being asked in primary 5 or 6 whether I supported Rangers or Celtic. I was really confused and answered Falkirk, but the wee boys insisted that I pick one or the other. I refused, said Falkirk every time, and got bullied. It was years later when I finally figured out what was really going on. Arses, and their parents too for indoctrinating them.

  95. Cuilean says:

    I am in total agreement. Well said. Never a football fan, my family were/are (some) Rangers – the decent sort. We all voted YES, to a man, woman & granny.

    During the Indyref when ‘they’ chanted, ‘You can stick your Independence up your arse’ and on the 19th Sept 2014, in George Square when ‘they’ rioted and I watched (not on BBC or STV, mind)! ‘them’ grab the Saltire out of the hands of two young girls (girls whom Glasgow polis later arrested – the ‘brave’ polis) and knee one of the girls in the back; I vowed then that I would never again buy anything from or by Rangers as gifts for family.

    I now look askance at anyone wearing Rangers colours.

    I wished they had stayed in the third division or gone under altogether. They are a hateful cancer.

  96. Paula Rose says:

    I’m not a great fan of football but I notice how many Rangers supporters are being turned off from supporting their team – that strikes me as very sad and a loss to our national game.

  97. MJT says:

    I don’t buy that there’s an old codger in the sky called God. But I know lots of people do think to be the case. But, i don’t think the man in the sky, if there is such a guy, would consider the folks who sing the Billy Boys or the folks who sing the Up the Ra type songs to be folks he’d want to associate with or to be ambassadors for his good name, if he has a name, good or otherwise.

    I often feel Scotland, viewed at a certain aspect, is in the dark ages, philosophically, intelectually. Oh i know we have so many bright and clever and good folks, but, from the outside looking in I wonder what folks think when they view certain aspects of the Scottish world and life.

    This fitbaw shite can be a right distraction. Holds us back i feel. Our TV sucks, our radio sucks, our Newspapers suck and this old firm shite sucks…but we Scots we don’t suck really. We’re better than this but, man, it’s fuckin erse at times, trying to make a better nation for all of us, when we can’t sort out some really basic shite, like keeping the beardie man who might not exist off of the stands and terraces and being more mindful that we live in Scotland, and as great a place as Ireland is…we’re not Ireland, and Glasgow is not Belfast or Dublin, Kerry or Cork.

    We got problems to be sorted out all over the shop, in our own shop, right here right now, never mind singing about battles of yore, there’s battles to be faught and won of a different nature here. As Mark Hollis said, ‘everybody needs someone to live by’- but fucked if i know why anyone would make that a pontiff or a queen. Sometimes you just need to bang your head against the wall and wail, I’m Scottish, I’m Scottish…I know this is not normal, but please make it stop.

  98. Brian McHugh says:

    It is Paula… the SFA have lived up to their name over the years and done Sweet F*** All about the issue.

  99. Inverclyder says:

    Remember hearing from a mate of mine that he was in the pub explaining to a lifelong, 50 something, season ticket holding Celtic supporter the benefits of Scottish Independence and why he should vote YES.

    The quite possibly inbred Celtic supporter was going to vote No as he believed in the UK being the best option as we were better together within the UK and that Scotland wouldn’t survive on its own, SNP Bad etc.

    My mate questioned why the bloke would be at Celtic park every second week to support his team while singing songs about being under the boot of oppression. Why he would vote for the very same State that they sing against every opportunity.

    My mate explained that this would be a chance to break away from what the Celtic supporters would see as the oppressors of the Irish state and be free albeit Scottish freedom rather than Irish freedom.

    My mate said that when it was explained to the guy it was obvious that it was a bit too much for him to take in as the two brain cells had never had to work so hard.

    Here was a guy who from the beginning was brought up to believe in hate for all things british, to hate the union jackerry, to hate the other team in Govan and to sing the songs of hate handed down from bigot to bigot.

    Here was his chance and he was voting for everything he was taught to be against.

    The bloke thought about it for a minute, looked about the pub, finished his pint and left without saying a word.

    Don’t think my mate has seen him since!

  100. Dr Jim says:

    @DerekM @Bob Mack
    Is that what you got from what I wrote? and here was me thinking I never said anything like that

    Nowhere did I say stick anybodys head in sand and nowhere did I say Ignore it either

    How many times over how many years do we hear the same moaning faced tripe, has anything changed NOPE because the powers that be don’t want it to change it suits them to have idiots keep talking and keep paying and keep moaning
    Why do the football programs talk about it? It’s not football related, no “Supporter” kicked a ball anywhere

    It makes everybody pay attention to the stupid bloody program and it sells newspapers that’s why
    It keeps everybody jumping up and down outraged at the same thing they’ve been outraged at for as long as they could keep it up and then makes them pay for it

    I don’t care if you’re a Rangers supporter or a Celtic supporter or an anybody supporter as far as I’m concerned you’re a mug to be taken advantage of if you believe for one Nano second that by discussing this as a footballing matter is a route to solving it

    Religion is big business, and it’s a good business to be in if you’re in the War business, the wealthy love it
    Without the bitterness and hatred would Celtic and Rangers ever be as big as they are in our wee country? Of course not

    Take the bile out of their money making game you diminish their power, do you think the SFA will ever do it, NO they live off it, their nice cars and houses are paid for by it

    Why on earth do people think investors run around taking each other to court to have a bigger slice of the clubs they claim they are doing their best to reform… Jeez!!

    People are thick, it’s a fact, we’re all there to be taken advantage of and there are always folk willing to do just that and always have been, we’ve been killing each other for thousands of years over Religion

    Which has been mankind’s greatest ever invention to control the population and keep them submissive at the same time

    You wanna buy a gun, a knife maybe , well look, how about a Football shirt that’ll get you started

  101. AhuraMazda says:

    Will says:
    28 May, 2016 at 6:48 pm
    “Okay. Article makes a lot of points BUT please remember it’s the same across the road at Celtic Park. It’s not a one sided problem.”

    The old lie.

  102. ewen says:

    Luckily I am from a long line of Partick Thistle supporters and only ever experienced pity from the blue and green clad numpties of my home town. Being a Jags fan has given me a feeling of superiority anyway. It hasn’t been difficult seeing the dregs that both sides have in their support.

    Currently living in ROI, I know a few Celtic supporters. Celtic is seen as an Irish club. However they don’t hate Brits and Prods. Most Irish spend their money supporting English clubs.

    I usually travel home from Larne and you get a lot of Rangers fans on the ferry. My wife is RC so our kids were brought up as Catholics. Those knuckle draggers are a disgrace. I have to bite my tongue. I know a lot of decent Rangers fans and I don’t understand how they can still support the club and what it stands for. Some were at my wedding mass…..

  103. Cameron Gazzola Black says:

    I’m a Rangers fan. Still. Like Rab, who wrote this exceptional article, I’m an anti-bigot from a (now) mixed family. I’m not a protestant, nor am I a Catholic; I’m an atheist of the rampant variety who has never been a member of a religious organisation. I can perfectly understand the thinking of the ex-Bears who’ve posted here, but I’m not one of them because I support a football team and not a group of fans decent or otherwise, nor a board of directors.

    But here’s the thing. Other than a few bigots coming from the opposite direction, everyone here has correctly pointed out that most Rangers fans, like myself, do not subscribe to these vile “ideas” and are not bigots. More of us are Yessers than is popularly imagined, and the vast majority of us are working class Scots exactly like the fans of every other club in our country. That means that we are also bang in the middle of the constituency that needs to be convinced to vote Yes when we have the second referendum on the subject. And streams of abuse aren’t going to do that. It’s perfectly legitimate, of course it is, to condemn sectarianism and bigotry of all kinds, and I do so all the time. But it is damaging to the independence cause to target the Rangers support en masse; the “Rangers fans are all cunts” tendency is alienating a large section of the Scottish population who could be just as open to the independence message as anyone else, having suffered under the Tories and their union just as much as anyone else. I’ve even met pro-independence Rangers fans who are being turned off the movement by having people on both sides of them battering them with the message that they can’t be Rangers fans AND independenistas.

    For the sake of Scotland and her rightful constitutional claim, the target has to be bigots and bigotry rather than the indiscriminate singling out of potential Yes voters who happen to support a team that many don’t approve of. Don’t be the ones to bring football and it’s tribal differences into our movement. It will defeat our purpose.

    And if you don’t believe what I’m saying here, please visit my Facebook page Rangers Are a Scottish Club. I’m doing my best to convince Rangers fans that it’s perfectly all right for them to support independence, and people in the independence movement telling them the same as the Oranges are, that they can’t support both their team and their country, aren’t exactly helping.

  104. Ruby says:

    I usually give everything to do with fitba a miss but I did find your article interesting Rab.

    These Ranger fanatics look very scary! If I came across any of them in the street I would be crossing to the other side of the road pretty smartly.

  105. AhuraMazda says:

    Dr Jim, there’s a problem with your standpoint. Like you I’m not interested in football. Many people in Glasgow aren’t interested in it. But like you I run the risk of bumping into a gang of these lunatics and being killed.

    I think 90% of the aggravation derives from Rangers fans, I’m sorry but it’s true. And 99% of the flute bands I see are Orange flute bands — actually it’s 100%, I’ve never witnessed a republican band.

    And actually it has little to do with football or even religion if you are going to be serious about. They’re just thugs, there’s no philosophical or religious underpinning to it.

    And yes, not all Rangers fans are like that, not all the violence derives from Rangers fans, and blah, blah, blah. It’s your intellectual and moral responsibility to deal with the biggest most serious problems first — that’s Rangers fans and their aggression.

  106. Liz g says:

    My remarks are caveated by the view that as far as I’m concerned football can sink or swim….
    It seems to me that most fans of Ranger’s hate the bigotry stuff but don’t feel able to do anything about it.
    The government has made this behaviour illegal but can’t enforce it.
    From the remarks Dr Jim made farther up the thread it occurred to me that the answer might be in the hands (or wallets) of the fans of all the other club’s.
    Just don’t go to the match if you’re team is playing Ranger’s.
    Leave the crowd to chant to themselves.
    It is worth pointing out that there is no law in the US that makes the N…. word unacceptable but rather the attitude of society itself that has developed the view that no serious person or anyone who wants to be taken seriously would consider using it.
    It is in fact social death to be “outed” for using … just …one word….not a catolue of chants.
    While non attendance may initially damage Scottish football there is so much big money involved, the powers that are involved I suspect will(because realistically only they can)act.
    Not attending a game when you’re team are playing Ranger’s and being clear why is a very powerful statement of “people power”and doesn’t force their support to change but rather gives them a reason to change,or a least to think about it.

  107. ewen says:

    @Cameron gazzola

    As long as there is the cult of Queen and union Jackery, you decent Gers are kissing in the wind and you have no chance of changing anything.

    You support a team that is unionist through and through and you aren’t going to convince me that it isn’t a unionist institution.

  108. AhuraMazda says:

    Cameron Gazzola Black, I think you are very wrong.

    You say “more of us are Yessers than is popularly imagined” and then go on to suggest that we should somehow make allowances for you and court you on the basis that you think the Independence movement will need you and your ilk in a future referendum.

    Every facet of that is either wrong or just plain twisted nonsense.

    First of all, if there are as many Yessers as you suggest, how long do you think you would live if you stood outside Ibrox handing out Yes flyers? I think it would be measurable in seconds rather than minutes, what do you think?

    Also, if there as many reasonable people in the Rangers support as you seem to suggest, and I am sure there are some although I would need to question their motives and sanity for associating with them, how come we never hear any booing or complaints from them when “hello, Hello” is sung?

    As for needing the small minority who maybe do object to the songs — albeit very quietly — I really don’t think we do need them. Glasgow was a Yes city. Now the more votes the better, obviously, but need?

    The thing that puzzles me most, touched upon above, is why on earth would any sane or reasonable person associate with these thugs? I wouldn’t dream of exposing my ears to that stuff or my eyes to those horrible flags and the whole culture.

    I couldn’t sit in that stadium for 5 seconds and I wonder how any Yesser who was sane and reasonable could. How could you possibly live with contradictions like that? It’s not even as if the football is good — the football is crap, it’s Scotland. We haven’t been in the finals of any tournament since like 1314 or something.

  109. jimmock says:

    slackshoe

    you have to realise that although Ghandi was a pacifist there were violent elements operating in India at the time who forced the British to pay attention to the demands of the Indian people for independence.

  110. MickCalder says:

    This article spoke to me. I’m a Catholic and a Rangers supporter(one of those long stories) and have had a season ticket for many years. I have ignored and pretended that the songs sung at Ibrox were not about me but really? By saying nothing, doing nothing and allowing this to go unchecked I have been tacitly agreeing with these vile words. No more! I will always support Rangers, it’s part of me. But it’s time to deprive them of my money until they join the rest of us in the 21st century.
    MickCalder

  111. Bilptoe says:

    The thing aboot the fitba is it’s all one-upmanship.
    One set o fans sing one song the ither set o fans respond.
    Dependin on whit’s sung determines the response.
    Ugly lyrics, ugly counter lyrics.
    Inject a bittae comedy intae the fray an dinna let the bams lead the rhetoric.
    Instead o respondin, the opposing fans should jeer and boo thier heids aff or stay silent, this wid stifle the one-upmanship and tak the sting oot o escalatin things tae the next level.
    Maybe even shame certain songsters and therefor nullify the sectarian aspect o fitba banter.
    I’ve ayeways looked upon fitba chants as a kinda home made entertainment for the masses by the masses in an itherwise pretty borin sport. Joe Bloggs’ 5 minutes o fame.
    Lookin at some o the picters fae the Scot cup final, thon auld rangers guy attackin the young hibees guy, fuck me, what a shameful state o affairs, some folk tak the geme far ower seriously and should mibbee bide awa, ah ken I wid.

  112. Alfie Ward says:

    Well said Rab. I too was a diehard hun many moons ago but as I tell friends when talking about fitba’ – I grew up ! While I still have a tendency to see the Gers do well, I’m gradually losing my favouratism with every piece of hatred and bile that spews out of Ibrox. Well done for speaking out against the bully boys / cowards !

  113. Valerie says:

    @MickCalder

    Well said. You are either part of the problem, or part of the solution.

    This shit will only get better when peer pressure, societal pressure is brought to bear, and it just becomes unacceptable.

    The various legal aspects only go so far.

  114. Ruby says:

    MickCalder says:
    28 May, 2016 at 11:20 pm
    No more! I will always support Rangers, it’s part of me.

    Ruby replies

    That is something that I most definitely do not understand! How can a football team be part you of?

    I find it pretty weird that people can identify themselves as Rangers fans, Celtic Fans or fans of anyone or anything.

    It almost seems like a religion!

  115. DerekM says:

    Here’s an Idea, stop writing about it, stop talking about it create a situation where it doesn’t exist and leave it to die in it’s own vacuum.

    If thats not sticking your head in the sand Jim then what is ?

    Hey it would be great if that worked but then it will not will it,reality is a bitch sometimes,education is the only way forward and to do that it must be discussed just like gaining our freedom if we followed your idea on that then where would we be.

  116. Capella says:

    @ Liz g
    I have to disagree here. What you’re suggesting is withdrawal. As far as participating in decision making matters, withdrawal isn’t an option. This seems to be a situation where full frontal participation is called for, which is why I’m offering an opinion.

    The sectarian divide is being exploited by Unionists to further Project Fear. The message is “drop your Independence nonsense or we’ll play the Orange card. Just like we did in Ireland.”

    No. We’re not buying that.

  117. Thepnr says:

    “I was born to be a Rangers supporter.”

    So was I Rab. I was born in Bridgetown in a slum, got a nice new hoose in Easterhouse a few years later but by 8 years old was living in Copeland Road. My old man had a habit of flitting, not fleeing debt as people often did but more likely fearing violence.

    Only people who lived there through these times can have any idea what I am on about so I’d appreciate if you don’t jump to conclusions.

    My first game was a Rangers v Falkirk reserves match where I got a lifty over the turnstyle. There was around 15,000 at that match, my old man wouldn’t let me go to a big game and had no interest himself.

    The rest of my/his family was a different story however, walk in the living room of my Uncle and be greeted by a giant picture of King Billy on a White Horse above the mantelpiece. I used to laugh at this but for many it is deadly serious.

    My Uncle like my Father has passed away now, my Uncles son, my cousin still supports The Rangers passionately.

    He voted SNP in 2015 and 2016 and YES in 2014.

    Trying to judge a book by its cover is not the smartest move.

  118. Pentland Firth says:

    Give decent Rangers fans a break, some of the comments on this thread are offensive. It’s perfectly possible to be a Rangers supporter without being either a bigot or a die hard Unionist. Many Rangers fans are decent people, Scottish patriots and Yes voters.

  119. TamTheBam says:

    Imagine how good Scotland could be if instead of putting all their energy/life into Rangers/Celtic these folks did things to improve our country instead.

  120. One of the mot satisfying discoveries I have made was to find out recently that “The Sash My Father Wore” started life as “The Hat My Father Wore” and was written and performed by an Irish American music hall artist who wrote it to describe the big green hats that were worn at the annual St Patrick’s Day Parade in New York.

  121. Paula Rose says:

    @TamTheBam that’s the bit I’m having a big problem with.

  122. Dr Jim says:

    I’m definitely considering that if I win the lottery I’ll start my own Muslims football club where we can sing anti Christian songs of the wrongs done to our brothers all over the world since the beginning of time

    There’ll be some shirt sales in that, Phew! and the investment opportunities are massive, The SFA and English FA will get right behind that little money maker, the potential newspaper sales, TV exposure, The advertising will go through the roof and they couldn’t stop me it would be racist
    Of course I would condemn any and all violence vociferously, and sectarianism because that should be driven out of the “Game” which, after all is the important thing isn’t it

    It’s something that’s definitely needed now that lots of the Christian Churches are joining forces again because Christianity is losing it’s grip on the masses and our politician brothers aren’t doing enough to help

    Get some real bile going, a new third way Kafflicks Prodisints and Muzzies plenty of hatred for everybody

    Thank God for God, or Allah or Jehovah or Weeeell it doesn’t really matter now does it as long as there’s money in it Coz there are always Numpties out there ready and willing to swallow up any brand of Shite you can cook up
    Me and Donald Trump can build a wall….Oooh Mexicans, nearly forgot about them

  123. Big Jock says:

    I’m drunk can I change my nationality to Irish. had it with Scotland!

  124. Croompenstein says:

    @PF –

    Give decent Rangers fans a break, some of the comments on this thread are offensive. It’s perfectly possible to be a Rangers supporter without being either a bigot or a die hard Unionist. Many Rangers fans are decent people, Scottish patriots and Yes voters

    Right fine, how do you suggest we tackle the sectarianism and bigotry of Scotland’s shame?
    The SFA do fuck all, the MSM do fuck all, the decent Rangers fans do fuck all so please tell me what ‘The Rangers Family’ are going to do about this blight on Rangers and Scotland??

  125. Dr Jim says:

    @ DerekM

    Wee clue here Derek, people have been discussing it for two thousand years, your discussing plan’s not working because there’s no money in it and the big flaw also in your discussing is, you don’t seem to realise

    You don’t count, you’re not important, you are nobody

    Evey TV football show, what do they start with ” Oh how we wish we were talking about the game but here we are again talking about sectarianism again”

    Because they know it sells and that’s all they care about, not football for God sake, if you want Football you’ll watch Barcelona for goodness sake not Glasgow Rantics Bigot Eleven

  126. Big Jock says:

    I’m scunnered with my fellow Scots. Honestly Scunnered I dont belong in Scotland. Lost with everything now.

  127. Thepnr says:

    The problem is in football. Agreed?

    Well the solution is the responsibility of those that govern Scottish Football.

    It’s fecking simple, the SFA is responsible, the clubs control the SFA. They have to act, it’s so fecking obvious is it not?

    Dozens on here have talked about it.

    ANY EVIDENCE OF SECTARIANISM AT A MATCH THEN DEDUCT POINTS.

    I think then they will get the message, it is not up to government to police football, it is up to the clubs. The clubs are the SFA.

    Let them sort it by being radical in deducting points, if they fail to do so then the government can threaten the SFA with fines and hold THEM responsible for failing to police the game.

    Either they do or we do, should be the message. The government by the way is the voice of the majority.

    The SFA needs to get the finger out and act on this issue or…

  128. Davros says:

    Suppose I should add (as you can’t edit posts?)am a lapsed Protestant, as opposed to Celtic fan.
    Still consider myself as a supporter of sorts.

  129. schrodingers cat says:

    when princess diana died, the tabloids blamed the “papperazzi” photographers…

    who the tabloids are directly responsible for creating by buying their photos

    by the same measure, the population who buy tabloids are also directly responsible for funding the papperazzi.

    there is no getting away from this.

    I am very closely related to one of the famous 5 hibs players and while sectarianism is less prevalent in edinburgh, it was enough for me to want to avoid having anything to do with hibs at all.

    even if you are not a bigot, if you walk down the road with bigots, you are, unavoidably, lending them your supporting

    to say otherwise is like arguing that you are only a little bit pregnant

    im a saints fan btw

    1. stop the busloads of fans importing their hatred into glasgow by empounding them at the ferry ports on the west coast.If this is problematic, change the ferry times on saturday so they miss the match

    2. if clubs sing sectarian songs at matches, opposition supporters to leave the ground and their teams to leave the pitch
    and ban offending clubs from having away supporters at your ground

    3. SG to lobby uefa to have repeat offenders banned from european competition on the grounds of potentially harming the tourist industry

  130. Ian Brotherhood says:

    @Big Jock (12.29)-

    ‘I’m scunnered with my fellow Scots.’

    I hear ye mister, feel the same.

    Three times tonight I’ve written fairly lengthy comments, then deleted them.

    No government will ever get a grip on this. It can only come from the ‘decent Rangers supporters’ we keep being assured exist in huge numbers. That decent majority has to deal with this at-source by ostracising the bigoted sociopaths in their midst.

    To date, that ‘majority’ has been well and truly silent.

  131. Brian McHugh says:

    We know social attitudes can be changed… two recent examples in Drink Driving and Smoking in Pubs/Public Buildings.

    How about, the SFA simply impose a 3 match ban on spectators, if sectarian or biggoted bile is heard on the radio or TV (as often it clearly is)… that is to say, that the club who’s fans commit the offence has to play it’s next 3 games behind closed doors… simply repeat until the message gets through.

    I suspect the message would get through fairly rapid. …and as far as worrying about clubs loss of revenue, I think it would be minimal compared to Rangers dropping to the bottom league for example.

    The SNP are trying with the OBFA… But it needs a Pro-active approach from the SFA and the clubs to achieve this. For years, all we have had is platitudes from them and zero action. I also don’t blame the media. They are just parasites who prey off the carcass. The leaders of the sport should man up and lead the way… unfortunately, their performance to date, indicates that they are impotent… maybe deliberately so?

  132. Brian McHugh says:

    Thepnr… spot on.

  133. Tinto Chiel says:

    The sensible way of stopping sectarian songs is to penalise any club whose supporters sing them, as Thepnr and others have advocated. Unfortunately, the SFA have done s.f.a. about it, because there would be a lot of flack in the short term and it is probably a deeply compromised organisation as far as the Queen’s XI is concerned.

    Big cojones are necessary but this simple measure would work, and is probably why it will never be enforced.

    I am still disgusted that Unionist politicians are quite happy to stoke these dangerous flames. It’s not the ones in Morningside or Milngavie who will pay the price, after all.

  134. Dr Jim says:

    The players for these clubs go home in their lovely cars to their lovely homes to their lovely wives and girlfriends with their lovely money and couldn’t care less who’s arguing with who about what

    The owners and directors of these clubs do exactly the same and then they all meet up after and play golf together because make no mistake they don’t hate each other they love each other, it’s what makes them all money and the SFA will do nothing more than wee token fines or a wee row every now and then to satisfy the bickering moanies and make it look like they’re concerned which they’re not,they’re rubbing their hands with glee at the prospect of Rangers being back in the top division, why should they downgrade their nice cars to the same stuff the idiots who pay their wages drive

    If there’s to be an end to it, it will only come from women politicians daring to do it because the men won’t,look at the Tories they use it as a divisive weapon in their armoury, remember Murdo Fraser with his Queens eleven nonsense

    So which political party has got the bottle to take the chance on losing an election, well it could only be the SNP because the others can’t afford to fall any further, they might talk a lot but would they do it, I doubt it

  135. Thepnr says:

    Maybe it is time that we took clubs to court for breaching the Offensive Behavior at Football Act?

    OK OBFA needs modified, I’d stick that in that the clubs could also be held responsible. Guess that would make the arseholes sit up and pay attention.

    I try never to post on these threads and I know why, it gets me animated, annoyed and fucking so pissed of that people can be this stupid.

    It is what it is and it offends me, it offends me that fellow Scots can feel this way, it offends me that such views often result in violence. Also makes me ashamed that our education must be failing in some way.

    I don’t have the answer but I won’t stop looking for one.

  136. ScotsCanuck says:

    Rab, l like you was a ‘dyed in the wool’ Rangers “fan”… by family, Religion & friends … and also like you couldn’t see how anyone who was not ‘Blue’ could be “one of us”.

    It changed in my late teens when, through my motorcycle connections, I met several Catholics and (you guessed it !!) they were just the same !! Again just like you I started to question the “us and them” doctrine which clarified as I became politically active within a Nationalist sphere,
    I could now see the “divide and rule” game plan in operation. I now will not have anything to do with Rangers FC but I still talk to auld friends (who know my feelings) and many of them say the Rangers “Hallo, Hallo” thing is just tradition, publically, but privately are embarrassed.
    When I have challenge them (privately), they fear chastisement from their peers for siding with “the enemy”. I have had all the insults … I need not elaborate but surprisingly the number of “bluenoses” who have covertly sympathised with my stance, is astonishing.

  137. Paula Rose says:

    I’m interested in any proposals folk have to deal with this, my email is on off-topic.

  138. ScottishPsyche says:

    @Thepnr

    I like that idea. Something like corporate liability on the part of the club. I’m sure there are smart lawyers who could work something out.

    Going after individuals seems unworkable so go after the crowd.

  139. Kevin Evans says:

    Am ashamed to admit this but when I see an artical NOT written by the Rev I normally don’t read much of it but I found your artical brilliant.

    A well composed and intelligent piece of writing (from a Rangers fan) just joking)).

    Great piece – well done mate.

  140. Liz g says:

    Capella 11.44
    Capella Hun I think you may have misunderstood or else my ramblings weren’t clear.
    When I suggested not attending matches if you’re team are playing Ranger’s,its not in the sense that the bigots have “won” and we have given up trying to do anything about it.
    But rather to disengage with this behaviou,along the line’s of it takes two to make an argument and no one else is cooperating.
    It seem to me that nothing will be done while ticket sales and broadcasting revenue aren’t harmed,and all the better if social divisions can be highlighted at the same time.
    To chant bilge and be aggressive towards opposing fans,requires opposing fans.
    In short in a tit for tat situation I am suggesting removing the tat.
    The power to do this is indeed in the hands of every fan in the county.

  141. Capella says:

    @ Liz g – apologies if I missed your point. I’ve been boycotting football all my life and it doesn’t seem to have made any difference!

    But now that the politicians have openly played the orange card it becomes everybody’s business.
    Make the blazerati pay for their bigotry. It’ll be tough at first but then peace will break out and fans can enjoy their Saturdays free from intimidation.

  142. scotspine says:

    In my opinion, The Club, through its inaction to tackle the issue and the politicians who encourage this behaviour with comments like “the queens 11” should be prosecuted for VICAREOUS LIABILITY.

  143. Ken500 says:

    They don’t believe in paying their Unionist taxes. 2019 the HMRC cometh. Amen

    No public money should go to any Orange Order. It is a elitist, secret discriminatory organisation. It is illegal to fund it with public money. All Orange Marches should be banned. Sectarianism and bigotry destroys the economy and lands people in prison. Any service personal allying themselves to lawbreakers should be disciplined. Scottish taxpayers are funding this disgraceful carry on.

    The Scottish Gov should introduce minimum pricing, urgently.

  144. Liz g says:

    Capella 7.03
    We are definitely on the same page..
    It’s just that I think “official”action has the potential to create more heat than light.
    There (it seems to me) is nothing that lot like better than to have something to defend/fight for.
    It’s what they give the impression they fantasise about.
    So that’s why I think that it’s the court of public opinion is the best place to make a difference.
    But I do agree the melding of the politicians needs to be counted.
    I sometimes wonder if the OBFA was introduced in anticipation of the establishments tactics.
    To if you like..have the law on the side of people who want this stuff gone.

  145. Iain says:

    From descriptions like this I think it’s got worse over the past decade. I attended a couple of Old Firm Games many, many years ago, and there were the songs, and probably incidents afterwards which I didn’t see, but there wasn’t the open vehemence and vicious anger. The digital age stokes that, of course – the Britnat rioters in George Square during the Referendum were apparently gathered through such communication – but the very real prospect of the end of the Union has brought out the worst.

    It’s reflected within the club itself: what other club has had such a collection of dodgy and disreputable characters in its boardroom in recent years? And although the club says it tries to eliminate the bigotry, the words are just platitudese: why, for example does the club have its players pass Union Jacks as they take the field? It’s all about the money, of course – were Rangers to pursue practical measures to utterly reject all association with Northern Ireland’s protestant unionist community, the Orange Order etc, and to actively help the prosecution of all offenders, the few decent supporters would not be numerous enough to sustain it at the top.

  146. Big Jock says:

    Rangers fans are just a collection of some of the most ill informed people in Scotland. Their whole existence is about tribal bigotry and occasional football. They think it’s OK to hate Irish people and Catholics. They need someone to blame for their pathetic lives.

  147. Ken500 says:

    The management are abusing the punters. No wonder the terraces are empty. A bunch of cheats on steroids intimidating the ref. It is taxpayers money that is being used.

    The Scottish Gov should introduce minimum pricing, urgently.

  148. louis.b.argyll says:

    Indeed Big Jock,

    But to move away from conflict and mistaken truths..and away from division..

    We must learn to live with other peoples’ (even LOVE our enemies’) inadequacies.

    Rangers ‘fans’..? is too broad a brush.

    In politics, painting must be done by the numbers.
    Sweeping strokes cross lines, those lines give oppressors leverage to divide.

    Let’s throw the whole damn painting away and start afresh..

    .. ooh that’d be independence..as many bold, sweeping, creative strokes as it takes..

    ..then half a century of fine tuning, in our own preferred styles..

    .that’ll end the orange period.

  149. mealer says:

    Tinto chiel 1.23am,
    That’s exactly the position.The SFA will have to be forced into change and the fans of all clubs can make a big difference by contacting their respective club chairmen and demanding they take action.

  150. Marty says:

    This is by far the most honest article I habe read in regards to sectarianism in Scottish football, thank you sir for having the balls to write it, I am a Celtic fan, I am from the North of Ireland, grew up on the Falls Road in Belfast, so I know a lot about the hatred that fills the stands in both Celtic Park and Ibrox, there is absolutely no place for it whatsoever, for one the troubles here have nothing to do with Scotland let alone Scottish football, it needs to be stopped

  151. T.roz says:

    I used to work in Sheffield in a paint factory, big football city, with massive rivalry between the blades and the owls, it was healthy and could get a bit aggressive at times, but it was all about the football. When we talked about the glasgow sides and their fans etc, the Yorkshire men could never understand why rangers sang ‘rule Britania’ they all laughed at it and thought it was really silly. Can you imagine william and Kate seeing the banner for them? They would be reaching for a bucket to spue into.

  152. Bob Mack says:

    If I remember correctly the one time manager of Scotland Craig Brown was filmed at a private function giving a rendition of the Billy Boys including the offensive verse, and was reported to the SFA. They of course did nothing and Brown continued in post. Some example to set from the governing body.

  153. louis.b.argyll says:

    Lets not blame the un-educated individuals.

    For it is the Nation (or lack of one) that has let them down.

  154. Almannysbunnet says:

    Thepnr says:
    The problem is in football. Agreed?

    100% agree. There is “kick racism out of football” which is supported by all the world football governing bodies. Sectarianism is equally toxic and often bleeds into racism. In Europe you show racism at a match and you will be identified, banned and the club heavily fined or forced to play behind closed doors.

    In recent years we have seen black players bring racist chants to the referees attention and in some cases the teams will leave the pitch. Same needs to happen when these morons start with their sectarian hate songs.

    The SFA need to start showing some balls and fast. This is a problem unique to Scotland. It is not perpetrated by the majority of clubs but it taints everyone. If they don’t do something about it Scottish football which is already on the skids, will die. If the SFA can’t look after their own house UEFA should step in and clean them out.

    No Scottish clubs in Europe until it’s sorted out. No referees allowed to officiate at European or world cup games until it is sorted out. SFA not welcome at EUFA or FIFA until it is sorted out. End of!

    Oh and not forgetting our glorious elected politicians. Show some leadership and kick openly sectarian MSP out of your party. I’ll not hold my breath on that one, eh Ruthie!

  155. Al Dossary says:

    @mealer 9:01am

    The contacting of club chairmen by supporters was exactly what happenned when the EBT fiasco came to light. I do honestly believe that the SFA were on the verge of allowing SEVCO back into the top flight.

    In some cases clubs were facing as many as 50% of their son ticket holders threatening nto to renew.

    The SFA must simply tell Rangers and Celtic that in every match where there is even one discernible chorus worthy of the OBFA that they will be docked 3 points.

    I look forward with baited breath to the first bigots derby this year.

  156. mr thms says:

    O/T

    According to Audit Scotland’s “An overview of local government in Scotland 2016” page 26

    http://www.audit-scotland.gov.uk/uploads/docs/report/2016/nr_160317_local_government_overview.pdf

    “Exhibit 10

    Councils’ service performance at a national level

    There have been improvements across many of the performance indicators in the *LGBF”

    *Local Government Benchmarking Framework

    “% of pupils gaining 5+ awards at Higher (Level 6)

    2010/11 23
    2011/12 25
    2012/13 25.7
    2013/14 28.1
    2014/15 29.3

    % pupils from deprived areas gaining 5+ awards at
    Higher (Level 6)

    2010/11 8
    2011/12 9
    2012/13 10.1
    2013/14 12.6
    2014/15 12.8

    % of pupils entering positive destinations

    2010/11 88.9
    2011/12 89.9
    2012/13 91.4
    2013/14 92.3
    2014/15 92.9”

    Improvements?

  157. Paton says:

    As a life long Celtic supporter and season ticket holder who has abandoned the Catholic Church and can’t abide religious organisations, in my opinion there is no clear comparison between Celtic and Rangers in terms of bigotry and hatred. I have heard the occasional teenage idiot shout ‘IRA’ which is always shouted down my fellow supporters but I haven’t ever, in the past 5 years as a season ticket holder sitting very close to the Green Brigade, heard anyone singing songs of sectarian variety or songs of hate. What I have heard are songs about the history of the fight for independence in Ireland – with no mention of being up to our knees with anyone’s blood. I’m not defending Celtic supporters for singing ‘the boys of the old brigade’ etc, I don’t think that this should be part of Celtic FC in this new modern era, however, the club was set up for the poor, mainly Irish Catholic immigrants who were victims of famine in their own country and sectarianism and exclusion in the West of Scotland by a largely Protestant population. It really annoys me for CFC to be constantly compared to RFC and to be labelled part of ‘the old firm’. I’ve had a great 5 years without the bigotry and I’m dreading next season and the trouble that I 100% expect from the supporters of RFC at every game – not only because of the chip on their shoulder but because it seems every club in Scotland (bar a very few) are ready to give them it back because supporters don’t want to listen to their bile anymore.

  158. John Savage says:

    It is a fundamental cancer throughout Scotland and always has been. I come from a “mixed” family and growing up in the 60’s there was a certain amount of banter with my uncles etc, due mainly to the success of Celtic. There was no bitterness just good humoured fun. I have been friends with people from both sides, indeed some like to take to the streets in the summer months to shoogle their shooders and yes we do sometimes have a fall out or two.
    What gets me is all this defenders of the faith nonsense; how many attend their local kirk? Having said that, a great man once told me that it wasn’t the ones who walked that you had to worry about but those who didn’t. I was on a train several years ago and their happened to be a Celtic CL game on that night. Two commuters from Edinburgh, well dressed man and woman were standing next to me and the man asked the woman if her sons would be watching the game. The woman replied, in a best Kelvinside accent, that both her sons were in the Boys’ Brigade so no way were they watching Celtic. Luckily the train was halting at my stop as I was ready to go at her. My son has been in the BB’S since he was 5 and is now doing his Queen’s Badge and this woman’s comments made my blood boil. THIS is the fundamental problem in this country, not the knuckle dragging tattooed fuc#wits, but the seemingly “respectable” classes who actually condone the activities of the cretins.
    I have a clown working with me who actively supports a local team, fundraises etc for them but his shouts of bigtorty and so on, should be heard. Including actively supporting the Pope being shot on his last visit to Scotland. THIS is where the problems arise from.

  159. slackshoe says:

    @jimmock
    I know that, the main reason for posting that link was regarding the journey many have taken from being brought up as bigots to de-programming themselves. I thought Limmy’s story was interesting.

  160. One_Scot says:

    ‘We said this on 20 April. The SNP actually lost in *14* constituencies. Man, we’re good.’

    Agreed. Now, when will Scotland be Independent, and can you email me next Saturdays lottery numbers.

  161. Ken500 says:

    The audit figures do not include mature students. 20% of students.

    Or students going to Univerity from FE college – into 2nd year. (HNC/HND or highers) How many mature students from deprived backgrounds go to university – 20%? + average 12.8% = 32.8%.

    Plus students going from College into 2nd year. Uni. Students are now getting a full loan to go to University. Any increases numbers have not come been calculated yet. Including mature students (from a deprived background?). More students from deprived backgrounds go to (FE) University. 32%+ . There is lifelong learning in Scotland. Scotland has one of the best education systems in the world.

    Westminster has caused the biggest immigration crisis in Europe since 11WW. That is what is causing increased immigration. Teflon liar Tony. He should be in jail. Illegal wars, banking fraud and tax evasion.

  162. Ken500 says:

    The relevant History of Ireland and the Westminster part in it is not understood. Total ignorance and prefabrication.

  163. Ken500 says:

    Not everyone wants to go to College or University straight from school. Mature students are conscientious.

  164. MJT says:

    Some great posts here, great to read the thoughts of fans who agree there’s no place for this pish in Scottish Football and Scottish life. And I’m with Paul Rose, what can we do.

    I live in Govan, and I go to SNP Branch meetings at the Pierce Institute. I don’t know the answer to this question, but what can be done? Who needs to be putting/applying pressure in the ‘proper’ places, whatever those places are?

    I don’t want to live in a nanny state, everyone has the right to support any team they choose. Is it a matter of raising certain issues at Council level? If we’re talking about this now, who else needs to be talking about this?

    I’ve walked by Ibrox tube many times on match day. I hear the songs being sung, and i see some of the memorabilia being sold just outside Ibrox.

    I understand folks who say there ought to be points penalites for any singing of certain songs inside the ground. But we also have to work on the desire to sing that stuff. We need to get to grips with the symptoms and the causes.

    Is it fair to say Celtic have been more proactive in stamping out sectarianism at Parkhead? I don’t know I’m asking.

    if we want to ever have a chance of sorting this out we can’t offend any fans of either side who are good upstanding folk, who just want to cheer on their team. In fact those are the folks we need, maybe most of all.

  165. Joemcg says:

    Just want to agree and confirm with the posts above about Ibrox and it’s lovely patrons. I can’t forget my one and definitely last time I went there. I see it’s not changed. I’m guessing but I think it was 1984 I was 14 at the time and their was a group of us around the same age. The now defunct Meadowbank thistle had drawn them in the league cup think it was called the Skol cup back then. We were all excited as it was the biggest game in the young clubs history going to a giant of UK football well back then anyway. We were subjected to horrific abuse spat on and I was even jostled a bit on leaving. We were only kids. Hearing bigoted songs too for the first time. I have a deep hatred and loathing for that club to this day.

  166. Tony Anderson says:

    An absolute belter of an article. I am a life long Celtic supporter who joined the army at 18, much to the derision of my staunch republican friends at the time. I served for 10 years gaining two of the best friends who were “True Blue” bears in the process. We have continuous banter but never ever derided each other for our religious/political beliefs, they were both YES voters.The vile you have been subjected to is all part and parcel if you present yourself in social media im afraid but I salute your convictions to publish such an excellent essay. Celtic still sing songs I think should be left on the bus. I have no issue of Celtic fans flying tri-colours, we were founded by Mr Kearns for the sake of Irish poor in Glasgow and its something that should not be forgotten. And I agree, the level of bile has dramatically abated at Celtic. We still have a way to go before we can take the moral high ground on the subject that in this day and age, should be a thing of the past.

  167. Effijy says:

    The old form clubs only give lip service to stamping out religious bigotry, and take action when evidence against
    a cultrate is undeniable.

    They know the money is mainly from religious fanatics who can spend very high proportions of their income in following the club and buying as much of their merchandise as possible.

    I had sight of a new camera system that Chelsea FC installed to try and fight the issues caused by their Casuals, a group of thugs searching for violence & football.

    The latest camera technology supports only 14 cameras that can focus right on the face of any troublesome fan no matter where they sit.

    If anyone throws something or starts fighting, tries to agitate opposing fans with threatening behaviour, Chelsea know what seat they were in, who has the season ticket for that seat, and exactly what they look like and what they were wearing.

    No second chances for those caught on camera, they are out, and a space is created for a civilised supporter.
    They cut out the cancer and restore a healthy environment that the club can thrive in.

    The cost is not beyond either of the old firm clubs, and it would rid them of this religious bile.
    Why have they not invested in this proven solution,
    its not what they want and it might lose them money.

  168. galamcennalath says:

    OT

    Patrick Harvey says … “Fairer funding of public services, using both property and income taxes, must be revisited in this session of Parliament.”

    In principle I agree. The dilemma I have, however, is that we already pay a bucket load to taxes already to WM and they aren’t using them the way most Scots want!

    Increased spending on public services, which most of us want, AND funding WM’s displays of Imperialism on the world stage, which most of us don’t want, is not an ideal situation.

    We cannot have the Scotland we would like within the UK. The difficult problem for the SG is how much of that better Scotland can sensibly be achieved with the costly Union millstone still round our necks?

  169. Robert Peffers says:

    @Cameron Gazzola Black says: 28 May, 2016 at 10:46 pm:

    ” … But here’s the thing. Other than a few bigots coming from the opposite direction, everyone here has correctly pointed out that most Rangers fans, like myself, do not subscribe to these vile “ideas” and are not bigots.”

    Let’s be honest about this, Cameron, if the claimed, non-bigoted, Rangers fan majority, or for that matter the non-bigoted Celtic fan majority, were to boycotted all matches for just a couple of months, but made it abundantly clear to the clubs by demos at matches, exactly why they were not paying to support the clubs, the problem would be almost instantly solved.

    It is, without doubt, hypocritical to claim the majority are anti-bigotry without taking action against that claimed minority. As the old Scots saying goes:-

    “If ye flee wi the craws ye micht weel bi shot iz a craw”.

  170. Bob Mack says:

    @MJT,

    Celtic fans stamped out a lot of the stuff by booing whenever a group started to sing anything offensive. It was self policing ,but it appears to have worked rather than not.

    There are many ,many Rangers fans who would do the same,but they need support from others. It is no easy thing to challenge often angry ,bitter people.

    My preference is for points deductions for offences, Any club. The fans will soon get the message. You want to win the league then stop your sectarian singing.The clubs would have to then enforce it.

    It is a bit draconian but needs must.

  171. Socrates MacSporran says:

    effijy @ 10.42 has posted the best item I have seen on this thread.

    The technology already exists to pin-point the cancer in Rangers’ midst. It might be expensive, but, if the club genuinely wished to cut-out that cancer, it could do it.

    I doubt if the will exists within the current management of the club to take this step. Therefore, they will require to be force to take it. The only people/body who can force this is the SFA.

    Again, unfortunately, I doubt if the will exists within that body, and within Scottish football to take the necessary action.

    Deduct points, chuck them out of cup competitions. Rangers, and Celtic, have already been fined by UEFA, after being held responsible for bad behaviour by their fans in European competitions. The same protocols should work in domestic football.

    We, the people of Scotland, MUST find a way to force the SFA to act, and to force this club, and any other club with some ill-disciplined fans, to act.

  172. Movy says:

    I am female, absolutely committed to independence and a Rangers supporter. I despise the Union flag waving group, but I also hate the constant denigration of all Rangers supporters and our team by others. The hatred and denigration is unfair to many of us. Please remember we are not all the same.

  173. bjsalba says:

    @Socrates MacSporran

    As long as the SFA office is at Hampden, nothing will change.

  174. Craig P says:

    I was explaining to an English friend’s 9 year old son why my dad, in defiance of the traditions of the rest of his family, refused to take me to Ibrox. I could see he understood the words on the surface but not really the underlying issues. Trying to explain the West of Scotland’s sectarian-football nexus to a 9 year old foreigner is like trying to explain why people smoke cigarettes. From the outside it makes no sense. Perhaps like smoking, the government needs to run TV adverts ridiculing sectarian attitudes.

  175. heedtracker says:

    The hatred and denigration is unfair to many of us. Please remember we are not all the same

    After a life time of football violence on our streets, I want these businesses closed down for good. If any other business was even associated with the kinds of violent behaviour we are told to accept, even celebrate says the BBC Scotland creep show, they’d be gone.

  176. Rab Dickson says:

    Movy said:
    “The hatred and denigration is unfair to many of us. Please remember we are not all the same”

    Which I think I made very, very plain in the piece.

  177. Effijy at 10.42

    While I agree with most of your post I don’t think the sectarian nonsense has anything to do with “religious fanatics”. The ones I know have no idea what the inside of a church looks like.

    It is tribalism with a long historical and political history, the infantile divisionism of which has long suited the objectives of the British establishment and state.

  178. Bob Mack says:

    There is no hatred of ordinary Rangers fans. I would be hating half my family.

    The problem lies with a section of the fans who are utterly bigoted and demonstrate and parade it proudly every week. Do identify yourself with Rangers by all means, but be aware that it would help your club, your family,and your everyday existence if that element which feels they are entitled to behave they way they do ,we’re curtailed.

    We cannot sit here and say we hate extremism but turn a blind eye because it exists in something we have traditionally identified ourselves as belonging to.

    Football is a game. A game to be enjoyed by all sees and all ages. It is not a religious crusade. Time to sort it out, and I mean EVERY club.

  179. maxxmacc says:

    That is a brave article to post, considering the amount of trolls who inhabit the internet. But it is only when people stand up to the bigots that there will be any change in this country. Sadly, the SFA and SPFL look the other way when it comes to dodgy songs, and would rather ignore the issue than tackle it. Rangers and Celtic should both be warned at the start of this season that any inappropriate singing (Rangers Support for Billy Boys etc, Celtic Away Support for IRA songs) will result in points being taken off them. I won’t hold my breath.

  180. Valerie says:

    Rev is posting cracking pics from a vintage car rally.

    Go to the right hand side and click on the Twitter Wings handle and scroll through.

  181. Robert Peffers says:

    @Paton says: 29 May, 2016 at 9:30 am

    ” … It really annoys me for CFC to be constantly compared to RFC and to be labelled part of ‘the old firm’.”

    It may surprise many to learn that the term, “Auld Firm”, is utter pish. Here’s why – The Celtic Football Club was first sponsored by the very same Roman Catholic Lay Brother that started Hibernian and the two RC Dundee teams that eventually became Dundee United.

    The original, “Auld Firm”, was Hibs & Hearts.

  182. velofello says:

    Mental picture of you coyly filing your nails Valerie.

  183. Ruby says:

    I kinda feel a wee bit sorry for the bigots! There must be something lacking in their life. Could it be it is some sort of cultural identity?

    They claim they are British but what does that mean? It would seem the HOL constitution committee are having problems trying to figure out how to make us more British.

  184. Ruby says:

    Valerie says:
    29 May, 2016 at 12:13 pm

    Rev is posting cracking pics from a vintage car rally.

    Go to the right hand side and click on the Twitter Wings handle and scroll through.

    Ruby replies

    I have seen some of the Rev’s pics on his Twitter account and I was very impressed. He’s a talented photographer!

  185. Robert Peffers says:

    For some unknown reason my previous comment did not all get published – here’s another try –


    Hibernian FC was formed at St. Patrick’s Church in the Cowgate in |Edinburgh in 1875. There had been a great migration of Irish people to The West of Scotland during the late 19th Century after the Potato Famine and a small portion of them had made their way to Edinburgh’s Cowgate that became known as, “Little Ireland”.

    The Irish community was not integrated into the Edinburgh community, Then Canon Edward Joseph Hannan was looked for a way to integrate the Irish and Michael Whelahan proposed that the CYMS should be formed and St Patrick’s Church in the Cowgate founded a, “Catholic Young Men’s Society”, in1865. They then formed their own football club at a meeting on 6 August 1875.

    Hibernian F.C. was founded and Canon Hannon was its first manager and Whelahan was its first captain. All Hibs players had to be members of the CYMS. Because of this policy, Hibs have been accused of being the first sectarian football club in Scotland, (a charge usually applied to Rangers).

    The club’s aim was for young Catholics to follow a life of temperance and religious adherence by playing top-class football and Hibs played charity matches to benefit causes other than the Catholic Church. Whelahan once said:- “We were both surprised and delighted at the invitation and can assure you that neither race nor religion were ever a consideration of Hibernian or the CYMS to help such a worthy cause.”

    During the first few years of their history, Hibs established themselves in Scottish football but only after overcoming much initial sectarian resistance to being seen as, “An Irish club.”. Note that a statement by the SFA said, “We are catering for Scotsmen, not Irishmen”.

    Now here’s the thing – Hibs were the first club in Scotland formed by members of the Irish Catholic population. Their example led to the creation of Irish clubs in both Dundee and Glasgow. These were respectively Dundee Harp, Dundee Hibernian and Celtic. Incidentally the originally proposed name of the Glasgow team was – wait for it, … “Glasgow Hibernians”

    Brother Walfrid in Glasgow regularly invited The Hibs to play in Glasgow before Celtic were formed, including a match against Renton that drew a crowd of over 12,000.

    Glasgow had a much bigger Irish population than Edinburgh and Brother Walfrid realised a Glasgow club could do a lot more to help the Irish population in Glasgow than could a visiting Edinburgh club. So, in November 1887, he formed a new team who played their first match in May 1888 with players mainly borrowed from Hibs.

    However, much real danger to Hibs came from, “John Glass”, (a financial backer for Celtic FC). He realised the coming of professionalism in England and correctly guessed the same would happen in Scotland.

    Celtic signed several of the Hibs best players by offering them big financial inducements to the amateur Hibs players. (Some things haven’t changed). This left Hibs without the decent team who had been highly successful in the preceding years. Celtic then went on to win four league championships in the 1890s.

    “Not a lot of people know that”, as some Cockney bloke once said”.

  186. Bob Mack says:

    Many Celtic supporters wanted Leigh Griffiths removed from Parkhead after he was filmed singing the “Refugee Song” about a Hearts player. I agreed with this.as did many on fan forums talking about this incident.

    In the event he was fined and banned for two games. He need not think the matter is closed.Any future action of a similar line will see the supporters demand he be removed.

    I will temper that by saying the majority of supporters. We do not need this in our game,as it is no example to set to others, especially when you wear the colours of your club on the field as their representative.

  187. louis.b.argyll says:

    To punish the ‘teams’ efforts for bigotry is off kilter.

    A driving licence type points system, named and investigated for each and every iffence, until, should the average not improve, despite heavy fines, the license is removed.

    Some internal fingerpointing is needed, you cant blame external factors forever..oh wait..

  188. Haggishunter says:

    My son came back from school asking if he should support Rangers?

    I had to point out that Rangers are out of the question because while there is a majority of decent people following the teams there is a huge minority of angry and hate filled thugs.

    I now take my son to the Mighty DynaMo (Montrose FC).

    Rangers especially fail to understand that due to their arrogance in the board room and in the terraces, they are scaring a huge number of potential fans away.

    Coached used to stop at our village on the way to Pitoddrie, we never had any problem except for Rangers, I remember an old man being pushed thru the chip shop window, pints being thrown and No Surrender being screamed at uninterested drinkers.

  189. galamcennalath says:

    Am I alone in finding the idea of unshakeably supporting a sports team incomprehensible?

    It’s the loyalty I fail to get. I support political parties, car manufacturers, musicians, breweries etc etc. However as soon as their offering fails to meet my requirements I will move on and support an alternative. Football seems to invoke something more permanent in many folks.

    I genuinely find that odd.

  190. John Fowler says:

    I stopped supporting Rangers for exactly the same reason, there are arseholes in every supporters group, but with Rangers it always seems more organized, more accepted, than any other group of supporters.

  191. Movy says:

    Rab D at 11.57 and Bob M at 12.02
    The problem I have is not only the tone of these sorts of articles (although I accept that there is balance in this one) but the photos which are used is association with this and other Union (correctly) bashing articles. It isn’t the first time that the Rev Stu has done this, and it is, in my opinion, completely unfair to have this constant equalisation of, apparently (if you take the photos as symptomatic of how everyone feels), all Rangers supporters with the Unionist movement and this behaviour. There has to be more balance on this site in relation to football matters and just who is pro-Union. (A number of comments are pretty balanced, but there are a few which are not.) I should add that I absolutely support the SNP in its work to try and legislate against this behaviour. I find it unacceptable that other political parties are attempting to undermine this.

  192. Ruby says:

    galamcennalath

    Agree I find it very odd!

    I understand that Barry Manilow, Daniel O’Donnel & Susan Boyle all have a huge fanbase. I just wonder if the children of these fans will be born Barry Manilow, Daniel O’Donnel or Susan Boyle fans?

  193. Dorothy Devine says:

    Erm! This is probably a silly question but forgive one whose only interest is in football played by a Scotland team and that from behind the sofa more in hope than expectation, but why are Rangers ursine?

  194. Clootie says:

    ….boy do I recognise that world.

    The banners and posts displayed by these bigots makes me sick. They prefer to be ruled by another nation, Tories and an unelected elite rather than build a fairer society in their own country.

    I am ashamed that Scotland in the 21st Century has people with this mindset. It is even more shameful that we have civic leaders and politicians who support these views…those who turn a blind eye are just as bad.

  195. Ruby says:

    Movy

    Why don’t you write an article with photographs showing Rangers fans flying Saltires?

  196. Robert Peffers says:

    @Dorothy Devine says: 29 May, 2016 at 1:28 pm

    ” … but why are Rangers ursine?”

    Have you seen their club mascot, Dorothy?

    https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=Glasgow+rangers+mascot&ie=&oe=

  197. Ruby says:

    Clootie You can understand why Unionist politicians would support these views obviously it will make it easier to recruit them into the military to die for William & Kate!

  198. HandandShrimp says:

    I would like to say that although this issue is a recurring sore in Scottish social life it says much about how dull the EU debate is that 25 days out from a major decision it is hard to think of much of anything to say other than to laugh at Project Fear Mk2.

  199. uno mas says:

    Slightly off topic but not so much…

    Thanks Stu for posting those photos of the old Austin A30´s on you Twitter.

    Brought a lump to my eye and a tear to my throat.

    My dad had one 1961 ish , grey, just like the one in the photo and he used to take me everywhere in it when I was a lad.

    Up Loch Lomond camping (midges) all round the Trosachs (more midges) and one of our favorite jaunts was through to Edinburgh where I used to enjoy climbing up the stairs in the Scott Monument, before I discovered he was a dirty unionist so and so,Walter Scott that is, don´t know about my Dad i´ll have to ask him when we meet up in heaven (all Wingers will go to heaven,
    we´ve already got the equipment!).

    One of the places he used to take me in the little A30 was to the football at Ibrox Park.

    Ya see not so off topic after all!!

    We used to go to all the games including the sports day at the start of the season.

    It was a respectable place back then. Sure the supporters (and of course all the players) were all protestant but the sectarian signing and chanting didn´t really get bad until about the time the troubles flared in Ulster.

    I kept attending the matches after he died but with a growing sense of unease and discomfort at what I was seeing and listening to also about the same time my mum met and married a wonderful gentle and kind man who was a Roman Catholic and I started to learn about the injustices the Catholic population had suffered especially in the West of Scotland simply because of their religion.

    My own personal epiphany came one day when my pal´s dad took us to the centre stand at Ibrox and when I looked around at the gathered congregation of stern well fed faced sensible suited and cromby coated great and good of West of Scotland society, lawyers, judges, promoted policemen, bankers, politicians,buisness men and of course Church of Scotland Ministers every one of them up to there elbows in the Free Masons and the Orange Order that I realised that Rangers Football club was so much more than a sports club but was in actual fact a political orginisation set up to maintain the protestant advantage in Scotland.

    So the next week I went with another pal to Firhill where we saw the Jags and Hearts play out a thrilling 3-3 draw both sets of supporters threw flour bombs at each other and Arthur Duncan (remember him, he went on to enjoy a stellar career with Hibs)
    scored the equaliser for the Jags in the last minute.

    Afterwards we all went to Munns bar for a few beers and both sets of (flour covered) supporters mingled with no problems.

    Never went back to Ibrox after that.

  200. Paul D says:

    I am not at all interested in football, and being from the east, somewhat oblivious to the bigotry and knuckle dragging of Rangers fans. However, like Andrew Morton, I was working in Manchester when Rangers came and destroyed the town. i went along with another Scottish friend, my English girlfriend and her pal.

    As an introduction to football supporting, I have never been so scared. Fortunately, the pal ran a shop round the corner and when it all kicked off we bolted to it, nearly being trampled by the riot gear clad tactical support unit of the Greater Manchester Polis on our way. She locked the doors behind us, pulled the shutters down and told the few punters who were there, both local and Scots, they could stay but if they left, they were not getting back in.

    I was thoroughly ashamed of my fellow countrymen.

    There was some benefit though, because we got there just in time to get the shutters down, hers was about the only shop in the centre of town not to be trashed which got her something of a commendation from her employers.

  201. scotrock says:

    Hi good people
    10/10 for this article. Brilliant comments as well
    I’m not RC but I am a Celtic season ticket holder. The reason I support Celtic is, in part, for many of the reasons above. I used to go to RFC games but sorry cannot do that now.
    But it needs to be said there are many good Rangers supporters and Scottish independence supporters with us. Hail Alba

  202. Gerry Imrie says:

    I was a Hearts supporter but lured to support Rangers by a spot of glory hunting in the early 70’s when I was 15. After a few years though maturing a little became sickened by all the hate, bigotry unionism and ignorance and went back to my local team. Pure RESPECT to Rab for publishing his piece and I hope all the hot wind dies down soon. Scotland has no place for bigots from any side, onward and upward to Celtic & Rangers supports for YES campaign, Hearts too, we’ll all make Scotland a more equal, fairer and better place to live in.

  203. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    The “ursine” thing is really very simple. It started off as “the Gers, the Gers,the Teddy Berrs” and then became just “the Berrs”. The club mascot came from that, not the other way round.

  204. heedtracker says:

    25 days out from a major decision it is hard to think of much of anything to say other than to laugh at Project Fear Mk2.

    The architect of Project Fear Mk1 is weirdly quiet too or rather reheating the UKOK glory days of terrify us into NO.

    Blair McDougall ?@blairmcdougall May 26
    More evidence of need to act to support jobs. Revenues far cry from £8bn the White Paper was based on for this year.

  205. Peter C says:

    A great and brave piece that is sure to enrage The People and bring out the worst of their bile, threats and hatred as evidenced already. But I don’t see anything changing at the new club as long as you have the Ulster hardcore of loyalist roughhouses that go via Ferry to every game, stoking up the sectarian rabidness, along with a criminal like King at the RIFC helm. We saw several of these cretins on the pitch with red hand tattoos on their elbows righteously defending their players from attack from Hibs fans, that is according to fat official mouthpiece Traynor and the Daily Record. With organs like that pushing the agenda TBB bigotry and hate will continue unchallenged. To take this away is to remove their identity and reason for existence.

  206. heedtracker says:

    It is interesting watching red and blue tory unionistas chatting right now, as EU ref fall out looks like really screwing up Cameron’s rein.

    Toryboy Brexit campers know they’ve lost to Cameron’s Project Fear 2 and now they want him out, regardless of the electoral carnage.

    Rewind the last 18 months in Scotland, what’s happened to the red tory SLabour outfit in Scotland at the polls and after they all followed victorious MacDougal’s Project Fear awful monstering of Scottish democracy 2014? Just UKOK history repeating.

    In reply to Kevin Hague
    Blair McDougall ?@blairmcdougall May 28
    .@kevverage indeed. Both unions essential for jobs.

    Scott Arthur ?@DrScottThinks 7h7 hours ago Edinburgh, Scotland
    The party of austerity joins forces with the party of education cuts. This will end well.

  207. heedtracker says:

    Blue tory unionist zealot in action, kevrage really likes this but why isn’t clear. Its hard core toryboy world trying to work out what’s coming down the UKOK line

    Salmond bad, shock

    Kevin Hague ?@kevverage 15h15 hours ago
    Cracking stuff from @euanmccolm, exquisitely spearing Salmond’s latest ego splurfe*

    *this should be a word

    http://archive.is/RZOX7

    Salmond’s ref 2 in two years with Brexit, works great in unionist Scotland and England doesn’t want to lose control of Scotland either so, vote out, lose Scotland is pretty good politics really. Remain campers should be delighted but probably wont show it. Salmond bad.

  208. Andy.D says:

    I felt sick after reading Rab’s story, but oh so proud he had the balls to put it out there, well done Rab. My story as a Celtic fan from a young age joined the Army at 16 was in Belfast at 18 and just felt so sad at the antics of both sides of the divide, hatred and bile shocked me to the core.I had to do a pub search one Saturday night in the Markets area of Belfast(catholic)Celtic V Rangers on the box, a punter said to me your wearing the right colour pal but your a queen loving bastard and proddy now fuck off, charming eh I came home half way through my tour for a wee brek, went off to Parkhead to watch my team, at the end I said to myself I will never support this vile sorry bunch again. Yes N Ireland does bring its bile over here in large numbers for both teams but mainly Rangers and that is sad. I now support my home team of St.Johnstone but cant get to many games but will never again sing or support the bile that comes from both stadiums in Glasgow.

  209. Grouse Beater says:

    Paul: “I was working in Manchester when Rangers came and destroyed the town.”

    What an irony, unionists vandalise an English city.

  210. Just as an addendum to my original comment, I voted No and will be voting to leave the dreaded EU. But the sad fact is the subculture we see at “Rangers” does nothing to preserve anything and in fact does great damage to it with the average Scot. The Peepul are indeed a national pariah and a stain both om the institutions they profess to love and Scotland as a whole. They are especially an embarrassment overseas as the many instances of violence and sectarianism show. Scotland would be a hugely better place without them.

  211. Kevin Evans says:

    The 2 main rangers songs are “hello hello, and follow follow” both of which clearly have abusive sectarian lines and chants. As far as am aware the main Celtic song is “hail hail” and. Y comparison doesn’t have the same abusive chants. Say no more.

  212. heedtracker says:

    My Slovene girlfriend was there though

    http://archive.is/wp4I9

    From

    “It’s been poisonous, hate-filled, he-said-she-said effluvia fuelled by people who should know better and, worse, those who weren’t even there.”

    to

    Adam Tomkins MSP Retweeted
    Agent P ?@AgentP22 May 26
    Adam Tomkins is spot on.

    The priority for the police at the Scottish Cup final seemed to be videoing Rangers fans

  213. Liz g says:

    OT
    Just been on a blog site I visit regularly
    from the U.S.
    Usually in the box at the side I get the little Union Jack and it says underneath that there is a visitor from the UK.
    But today I am in London and the box at the side is displaying a UJ with the St George’s cross coloured bright red and the rest of the colours muted,with the wording “a visitor from London”.
    Wonder what the story is,as to how and when this happened and why don’t we have a Scottish identity.

  214. Dan Huil says:

    Excellent article, Rab.

  215. Walter gallacher says:

    Turning away from Rangers is understandable (and sad for Rangers) if you do not want to be associated with the more obnoxious elements of the support. It is equally acceptable to continue to support Rangers and not be intimidated by these elements and to hope for change over the longer term by taking control of your club away from the lunatics. What is not acceptable is to stereotype and demonise non-sectarian / normal fans along with the worst elements. That is what is happening on social media with fans of other clubs and particularly since Rangers’ financial troubles. In the context of football rivalry that is predictable and understandable. In the context of a political narrative suxh as on this site, stereotype, demonising and categorising people is unacceptable nationalism.

  216. Dorothy Devine says:

    Mr Peffers , is that a bear – I thought it was a dog!

    Dave McEwan Hill , thanks for the rhyme!

  217. heedtracker says:

    In the context of football rivalry that is predictable and understandable. In the context of a political narrative suxh as on this site, stereotype, demonising and categorising people is unacceptable nationalism.

    To Rangers support.

  218. Dan Huil says:

    british nationalism under the stinking auspices of the Butcher’s Apron.

  219. Let’s be honest here the only reason Rangers and Celtic have been so great is because they are rich clubs money earned through religious hatred all they have ever done is buy the other Scottish clubs best players to the detriment of the other teams fans so if you have the most money you will have the best team what’s great about that? And what kind of SPORT is that?

  220. Robert Peffers says:

    It does seem to have escaped the notice of the majority of the MSM, both dead tree and airwave, that there was the ever present usual provocation by the Ranger support even before the game kicked-off.

    Whatever else can you call the sectarian chants and singing of offensive songs that have long been the norm for a large portion of the Ibrox faithful? It is thus rather disingenuous for the usual MSM suspects to attempt to claim the trouble at Hampden Park was entirely due to the Hibs fans provoking the Rangers support after the match ended.

    I’m not excusing anyone here but I contend that the Hibs support, whether they were even Catholics or not, had been subjected to over 100 minutes of provocation by listening to provocative chants and songs.

    Whatever else those Hibs fans were it is highly unlikely they were what they were being accused of being.

    “Fenian”,(f?n??n), is defined as :-

    noun: Fenian; plural noun: Fenians

    1 – a member of a 19th-century revolutionary nationalist organization among the Irish in the US and Ireland. The Fenians staged an unsuccessful revolt in Ireland in 1867 and were responsible for isolated revolutionary acts against the British until the early 20th century, when they were gradually eclipsed by the IRA.

  221. Dave says:

    A well written article with many fine pints but I find it sad that this is being linked to the Indy referendum.

    I witnessed nasty threatening and down right narrow minded behaviour from yes and no voters alike. There was far to little rational debate and all to much arguing based on the same hate filled archaic us and them rubbish you speak of witnessing at the football.

    It pains me to see the same thing on the euro referendum where people are picking sides based on their allegiance in the Indy ref. They are to autonomous votes it’s possible to be yes yes, no no, yes no, no yes. It doesn’t make you a hypocrite.

    There were thousands of votes wasted in the Indy ref due to bittet footballs rivelries. Frankly it makes me ashamed to be Scottish!

  222. Not Convinced says:

    Those commentators above who have suggested that the clubs be fined if their supporters engage in such behaviour are close to a solution, but I think a better way would be not to fine them £££’s but instead to rule that any team whose supporters engage in such sectarianism is docked five goals in the match in question.

    Surely even the stupidest supporter should be able to follow the logic of “Sing any of those songs and that 3-1 victory becomes a 0-1 defeat”? At which point, if they’re really about the football rather than the sectarianism, then they’ll might even start to police themselves on the issue?

  223. Big Jock says:

    Before people tar Celtic with the same brush as Rangers. Remember that the riot at Hampden did not involve Celtic. The common denominator is Rangers. Trouble follows them.

    Celtic and Rangers traditions are on entirely different spectrums. Rangers songs celebrate oppression and Celtic songs celebrate liberty from oppression. The lazy MSM and others use the lazy easy journalism of saying the old firm.

    Personally I gave no problem with the Irish flag and don’t find it offensive. The Union flag in the context of Rangers. Is used to oppress and divide. It’s a bombastic tool used to intimidate.

    I would rather have Scottish flags in team colours though!

  224. stewart fae stoney says:

    Very good piece, my sons and me travel all over the country trying to see as many away grounds while following Aberdeen but there is one ground I refuse to take them to, firstly there is the singing and secondly for their well being, many years ago I paid Ibrox a visit and was subjected a similar tirade of verbal abuse and was hit on the head by the seat of a chair hurled from the Rangers “fans” and needed 4 stitches, police did nothing, they would most likely talk to the rangers board in the masonic lodge later on. I few of my pals were rangers fans but they no longer go. There is one simple solution but the football authorities dont have the balls, every time there is a sectarian song sung then they have to play the next home game behind closed doors that way it might just sink into the rangers board and fans brains

  225. Tinto Chiel says:

    I have been going to football since 1962: first game, Third Lanark V Dundee at Cathkin Park.

    I went to non-denominational schools and am an atheist.

    For what it’s worth, I find Celtic supporters easier to get on with than Rangers fans, although I had an unfortunate experience when caught up with The Green Brigade at Airbles station in Motherwell a couple of seasons ago. Their intensity was not on the Obay Ur Quene scale of bigotry, however.

    I have good friends from primary school who support The Teds, but they would run a mile from the morons we have been discussing. The problem really dates to the ideas of the Protestant Ascendancy, hence the much-heard “We Arra Peepul”. I agree with some commenters who think the singing and general bigotry got worse following The Troubles, and the constant injection of support from Northern Ireland produces most of the extremism we sadly witness.

    I have found the personal testimonies on this thread very interesting and moving but I repeat what I said earlier: there will be trouble next year unless the SFA make clear the consequences, in points, of sectarian singing. After four years of quiet, supporters of other teams will not take kindly to this poisonous nonsense.

    I found the Referendum campaign to have been a liberating and inspiring experience. All this stuff is exactly the opposite and is why Yoon politicians stirring this Crock of Carmichael really disgusts me.

  226. Liz g says:

    Big Jock @8.13
    From the outside they both come across as the same,the sentiment behind the lyrics of their chants and their flag’s and colours are just detail.
    Think for a moment if you will of a game in New York,attended by New Yorkers and they flew the Mexican and Canadian flag’s.
    They chanted auld song’s at each other but those song’s have no meaning for you.
    How bizzare you would find it,and could you make a judgement call on who was the ….lesser aggressor…
    Now please don’t think I am saying you are wrong,I don’t know enough of the details to form a judgement,all I am saying is to people not up to speed with the issues and history it does indeed look like they are both as bad as each other and happy to be so.

  227. The Isolator says:

    Big Jock

    Whilst I agree with your overall sentiment in regard to the Rangers / Celtic divide we have to get things into some sort of context here.

    I’m old enough to remember the really bad old days of football hooliganism from a purely football supporters viewpoint,

    Make no mistake ..collections by the Parish priest and his handlers “asking” for money to fund the IRA..pubs where the National Anthem of Ireland is belted out with gusto and patrons requested to be upstanding are all Celtic FC related.

    Then the utterly reprehensible incident involving a Tartan Army fan was chased by “Republic of Ireland” fans in Glasgow and beaten badly for daring to display a Saltire Flag when down from Aberdeen.

    You are a Patrick Thistle fan and I commend that and therefor salute your very own fans Anthem “Oh Maryhill is Wonderful” a poignant reminder that football in Scotland is not without humour in these sad days.

    Robert Peffers @ 8.10 great post.

  228. Clootie says:

    @Big Jock 08:13pm

    Excellent post and a perfect summary.

  229. scotspine says:

    Sectarians? What a shower of sad, pathetic, no mark, fucks.

  230. Lochside says:

    Dave says:
    29 May, 2016 at 8:07 pm
    ‘A well written article with many fine pints but I find it sad that this is being linked to the Indy referendum.’

    Sorry Dave, but this fine and brave article is and should be connected directly with the issue underlying the Referendum: the issue of Scotland’s identity as a colony of Great Britain/Uk.
    Rangers may have origins beginning from a rowing club of Glaswegian ‘gentlemen which evolved into one of the early leading clubs of the embryonic Scottish football league.

    However, by 1912, the troubles in Ireland, with particularly the insurrection planned by the Protestant minority in the North, involving the armed 100,000 strong Ulster Volunteer Force….was reinforced by Harland and Wolfe opening the shipyard in Glasgow, staffed by several hundred Irish protestants and augmented eventually by the locals of the same faith. The former group chose Rangers as ‘their’ club in direct competition to the ‘Irish’ Celtic. Up to that point, Rangers and Clyde were the big football rivals in Glasgow.

    From this point on, sectarian trouble begins to emerge. The Ulster flag, but mainly the Union version became prominent as a symbol of the ‘British’ and loyalist/protestant identity of the Rangers support and club. Just prior to this period, Rangers still were signing openly Catholic players. This ceased almost immediately. But why a ‘British’ identity for RFC?..Sadly because of indoctrination of the Scottish population via ‘Monarch and Empire mythology, there was no clearly identifiable separate ‘scottish’ identity other than in martial sacrifice…of which we were superlative in..150,000 dead in WW1.

    Celtic, like Hibernian, like Dundee Hibernian represented the recent large influx of Irish ( of both persuasions) from the famine years up to the present. Virulent anti-Irish Catholic hatred was fermented by both Church of Scotland and Unionist politicians, despite these immigrants being British subjects.

    This state of affairs increased up to the second world war, when anti-Catholic and anti-Irish violence was common..not only in the West..but in the East..in Edinburgh the Protestant Action Force was a known vicious and political presence. The ‘Billy Boys’ of Bridgeton led by Billy Fullerton were the first organised football hooligans anywhere…anti-Catholic…organised and armed. Because of their evolution there arose a counter gang the ‘Norman Conks’ a catholic gang…violence at major Old Firm games led to the first segregation in football anywhere in the world.

    So much for history. From the end of the war onwards..Rangers solidified sectarianism into their foundations. The support now resolutely anti-Catholic and singing the old US Civil war song ‘Marching thro’ Georgia’ with the hateful ‘Billy Boys’ lyrics of murdering catholics..incidentally with respect to the shamed Billy Fullerton and his ultimately black shirt pals ( yes they were Mosley’s chums in Scotland).

    This fascist streak was always likely to re-emerge..hate Catholics..hate republicans…hate err..’ Nationalists?
    The infusion of English casuals appearing at Rangers games in the ’80s with their teams banned from Europe..meant an unholy union of British movement adherents and drum beating pape-haters. Witness ‘Engerland’ ‘fans’ singing ‘no surrender to the IRA…and the increasing politicisation of the Rangers support..not only as always against Irish and Catholic (think Neil Lennon).. but now against those nearest…Scottish nationalists..’fenian jacobites ‘as one ugly web site descibed us.

    I maintain that the sevco that has been allowed to arise like a deformed phoenix from the disgraceful criminalty of its predecessor’s demise..has come back as politically motivated business masquerading as a football team backed by the same corrupt unionist media, for the same corrupt reason: divide and conquer.

    Witness the Armed Forces ‘rally’ with Scottish squadies in uniform seig heiling while doing the ‘bouncy’..; witness the never ending thuggery (Manchester)..culminating in the concerted violence (unpunished and unchallenged by our complicit unionist media) on Sept. 19th 2014; and lately their ‘defending of their players at the Cup Final; witness the ludicrous media campaign to divert the blame on to a few Hibernian vandals. If Rangers were not present..does anyone think that there would have been any trouble..apart from the stupid crossbar breaking?

    There are many decent Rangers fans, who only want their team to be a successful football side. Most of those people, however do not attend. The howling anti catholic and true brit mob have been encouraged to be in the ‘ascendancy’ at Ibrox. Until the SG , the SFA, and more importantly the club itself change this situation..then a further crisis will erupt and hopefully this dinosaur of an institution will disappear. Possibly Scottish Independence?….imagine the ‘peepul’ still waving an anachronistic flag and…after a referendum to abolish the monarchy… pledging allegiance to a foreign queen?….Tick Tock right enough.

  231. Robert Peffers says:

    @Dave says: 29 May, 2016 at 8:07 pm:

    ” … There were thousands of votes wasted in the Indy ref due to bittet footballs rivelries. Frankly it makes me ashamed to be Scottish!”

    Well, Dave, it certainly doesn’t make me ashamed to be Scottish. Thing is I cannot identify myself with either sectarian group. As I’m 80 next birthday, why would I be ashamed to be Scottish after all that time despising both hate filled sects of Christianity?

    The point is that the sectarianism in Scotland is wholly identified with the origins of two Irish sects of the Christian faith and far more to do with Irish politics than with Christian values. In fact it has nothing whatsoever to do with Christian values or teaching.

    There are both Protestant and Roman Catholic Christians in Scotland that have never identified themselves with the Irish sects. In any case I very much doubt if either lot of bigots are in any way followers of Christ’s teachings. The main basis of Christianity is to love thy neighbour as yourself.

    Sectarians not only hate their Christian counterparts but would kill them off if they could and in truth have indeed often killed each other. There are indeed sectarian killings, and violent assaults between these sectarian idiots every year, particularly in and around the West of Scotland.

  232. Big Jock says:

    Celtic never had a religious signing policy. Rangers did up until the late 80s. Catholics and Irish were routinely persecuted and discriminated against in Edinburgh and Glasgow.

    Thankfully those days are gone and 95% of Scotland has moved on. But that 5% make a hell of a noise and they disturb me greatly. Especially when the bigotry is driven by Rangers Fc and their ethos.

    I think we all want to live in peace and get on. But these guys want to fight a 400 year old battle that had feck all to do with us.

    If only we could get shot of them!

  233. Tam Jardine says:

    Some great contributions tonight from Lochside, Robert Peffers and others to an important article.

    What I would add is that it is easy to forget the Tartan Army’s role as a contrast – indeed the vast majority of clubs in Scotland are in stark contrast to the behaviour of a few thousand sectarian embarrassments.

    Without having caught any of the Scotland friendly tonight due to work shit I am fairly confident those Scotland fans over in Malta are enjoying themselves and endearing themselves to the locals.

    The TA are not to everyone’s taste but they are generally well behaved, have a great sense of humour and display many of the profoundly positive characteristics of this nation wherever they go.

    Let’s not forget amidst the handwringing over the serious problems we have that Scottish football supporters are amongst the best in the world and indeed are regarded as such worldwide.

  234. Bilptoe says:

    On a brighter note, the new Top Gear was Sh1te!

  235. ScottishPsyche says:

    @Lochside.

    With such a history steeped in the establishment, you can see how entitled many of the Loyalist element feel. It does seem they could not be allowed to die as they serve as a focus for all sorts of converging factions in the Yoon identity in Scotland.

    I believed Tomkins was just a foolish cowardly type who felt emboldened by being associated with a group who have such an outwardly hard persona. But now I’m beginning to think he knows exactly the roots and the value of such an association and he is exploiting it for all its worth, as is Ruth Davidson and the rest of the Tories in Scotland.

  236. The support of Rangers, which is steadily becoming a pariah across Scotland, for the union damages the union cause. I don’t know if the UK establishment is aware of this yet but Jim Murphy well knew that which is why he tried to silence the OO in the referendum debate.

    I am encouraged by many testimonies on here from ex Rangers supporters and from Rangers supporters looking at what their club has become. It has become a tool now in the division the UK establishment will try to promote in Scotland but I am confident time has passed for that now – except our media will still try to inflame it.

    If any Rangers supporter would liek a large 5ft X3ft Saltire to fly at Ibrox he could send a £3.50 cheque to Forward, 186 Argyll Street, Dunoon PA23 7HA and I will post one by return.

  237. Walter gallacher says:

    Big Jock says:
    29 May, 2016 at 11:08 pm
    Celtic never had a religious signing policy. Rangers did up until the late 80s. Catholics and Irish were routinely persecuted.

    Your namesake never got on the Board at Celtic. Why? Because he was a Protestant. Everyone knows Celtic have a significant number of bigots in their support. Independence in Scotland is not about football clubs.

  238. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Tam Jardine, as ever, injects a positive note to the discussion.

    It’s not easy for those of us born and brought-up in Glasgow to be objective about it all.

    My family moved from Cowcaddens to the southside, when I was five, to Battlefield Rd. It was, and remains, one of the main routes for Rangers fans after any Old Firm fixtures. (Celtic fans are always shepherded towards Toryglen and/or Aitkenhead Rd.)

    Battlefield Road was also one of the main routes used by OO Marches heading for gatherings in Queen’s Park. They looked like great fun – my two wee sisters and I were only allowed to watch them from the window.

    From age 5 to 13, my main experience of ‘Rangers’ was having our close used as a toilet/vomitorium. (This was well before secure door-entry systems were installed.) It was ‘normal’ to have to step over comatose bodies on the bottom flight. On more than one occasion, to my shame, I, and my best friend (a Pakistani lad who lived under ‘my’ house) would snaffle whatever we could get from the pockets of these scary characters. We would also wait until they’d all gone before scouring the temporary car-parks at the ‘Rec’ behind Mount Florida Indoor Bowling Club for empty ‘ginger’-bottles – a nice wee earner.

    That was ‘normal’. We didn’t, as children, question it.

    This thread (along with others on this site) may be depressing for some, but it must be viewed in context – this discussion was impossible a decade ago. It’s always been happening, aye, but not so visibly, in a forum with such a large readership.

    Four decades have passed since Just Another Saturday. Billy Connolly had a starring role in that production, and was a young man. He is now an old, ailing man, and not much has changed.

    Can anyone imagine BBC Scotland commissioning anything like that now? And if not, why not?

    When, oh when will we get this shite sorted?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_McDougall

  239. Personally, I have always loathed the so-called beautiful game for its pandering to knuckle-dragging pig-ignorance and mass thuggery globally and not just in Scotland (try Turkey where shootings occur; or sit beside some Millwall supporters or their London peers on the Tube after their games have finished).

    Robert P will have the historical references at his fingertips, but I believe, if memory serves me right, one of the Jamie Stewarts (the Saxt?) wanted to proscribe the game and choke-off opportunities associated for mass thuggery by these riotous animals from our land (this long, long pre-dating the sectarian animality imported by Harland and Wolf when they opened on the Clyde and sought a company backed team, in spiritu, to vocalize their exported into Scotland uber Orange Unionism of the Carsonite style).

    The OBFA (?) a low-key, diplomatic-legal approach compared to his – the Jamie’s – attempted initiative.

    For myself, a simple solution, shut the whole gangster operation down from the amateurs through the juniors to the professionals: The whole shooting match (and rugby had better watch its step, too, for its pro-Anglo-Brit shenanigans. Shinty, thus far safe; but team sports seem to bring out the herd animal instinct which I would suggest needs putting the hems on).

    Fitba’, I’d immediately kick into touch ad infinitum, however.

  240. ronnie anderson says:

    @ Rab Dickson In a discussion with my Brother in Scarburgh last night about the OO/Rangers support for the Onion, your story clarified my point ie a minority.

  241. BJ says:

    This article is very frightening. Brings home how divisive religion can be and add in a football bigot it’s downright dangerous.

    Outside the polling station during the referendum vote in 2014, a couple of men were telling voters on their way in to “vote NO, remember we are the people”!! I’m assuming they meant Rangers?

  242. Papko says:

    Its very interesting reading all the personal accounts.
    Strikes me that “Sectarianism”, harks back to a time when religion was more important, and economic deprivation bred resentment.
    100 years after the Easter rising, lets hope Britain and Ireland can resolve their differences,bury the past, and enjoy the benefits of mutual prosperity.

  243. Jas says:

    There was a teacher in America called Jane Elliot who did a psychological experiment with her young pupils to prove how easy it was to inculcate discriminative practice within human groups. The experiment involved creating false, but divisive perceptions between blue-eyed kids and brown-eyed kids in her class (check online for more info).

    The experiment proved how easy it was to create an ‘us’ and ‘them’ situation, and so revealing the latent, tribal instincts that feed upon the human fear of that which appears ‘different’ or ‘unknown’ or ‘culturally alien’. Elliot’s focus was on racial discrimination, but it could easily be applied to our own ‘blue-eyed/green-eyed’ problem as a way of exposing, and thus dismantling, the ‘divide and rule’ practice of the powers-that-be.

    Time will tell …

  244. Iain More says:

    @David MacGille-Mhuire

    Golf seems to attract a fair number of the drunken knuckle draggers as well, the Ryder Cup in particular.

    The whole London Olympic Games was one nasty Brit Nat Fest. I had to shut off the commentary after one commentator good as accused a competitor of cheating because they had beaten a Brit fair and square.

    It isn’t sport that is the problem in my view it is rabid xenophobic British Nationalism in relation to British Sport. Getting rid of sport totally wont solve it as they will just take their disease to some other place or event.

    I wont comment on what happens abroad.

  245. Walter gallacher at 11.57

    There are Protestants on the Celtic Board. Celtic’s greatest players have been Protestants
    There was a joke going round a few years ago
    Q. “Which three “brothers” played for Celtic at the same time?”
    A. Evans, Stein and Peacock – a very sturdy masonic half back line.

    The problematic stuff at Celtic Park has never had anything to do with religion. It is to do with the armed Irish rebellions for Irish independence. I’ve never heard anything of a religious or anti religious nature sung at Celtic Park.

    It has suited the establishment and the media to paint Rangers and Celtic with the same brush to lessen the shame on Rangers.
    Not that I’m suggesting for one minute that there hasn’t been reprehensible behaviour on both sides.

  246. defo says:

    Would Great Britain exist without the break with the holy roman emperor having happened ? Saxe-Coburg Gotha certainly wouldn’t be reigning their inbreds over us ! Which reminds…
    How is Andry getting on these days, anybody know ? Awfy quiet recently.
    Heed doon. Girls and guns. Boys will be boys.

    Anyhoo…

    The industrial revolution would have materialised elsewhere probably, and the Empire would never have risen.
    We however, may still have ended up as a colony. Not pretendy equals though.

    At, or near the bottom of the food-chain, it disnae really matter if you doff your cap to London, Rome or Brussels. Your still fucked. Colonists seldom treat the colonised as anywhere close to equals.
    Tow their line though , and you can do very nicely indeed.

  247. Robert Peffers says:

    @Bilptoe says: 29 May, 2016 at 11:29 pm:

    On a brighter note, the new Top Gear was Sh1te!

    I Wouldn’t know … anyway so was the old one … and I’m a petrolhead.

  248. defo says:

    Toe

  249. Robert Peffers says:

    @Papko says: 30 May, 2016 at 12:20 am:

    ” … Strikes me that “Sectarianism”, harks back to a time when religion was more important, and economic deprivation bred resentment.”

    The last thing in the World that sectarianism is about is religion, Papco.

    It began with the Plantation of English, Welsh and Scottish immigrants into Ireland by the mainly English Royalty. Remember that the English Kingdom had annexed Wales in 1284 by the Statute of Rhuddlan.

    Then after several implantations of English, Welsh and Scottish people into Ireland they annexed Ireland in 1542 with the Crown of Ireland Act.

    Those Plantations had the immigrants into Ireland take over the Irish People’s land. Thus began the struggle by the Irish to regain their own country. These protestant Orange-folks are not the real people of Ireland and the sectarianism was no more than the English Monarchy taking whatever they fancied for themselves.

    Remember that it was the English Glorious Revolution of 1688 that saw the English Parliament depose the monarch who wore both the crown of England, (then three countries), and the crown of Scotland and then forced Scotland into the Treaty of Union that we Scots are now attempting to annul peacefully.

    So although it was done in the name of the Protestant Christian Sect the real motive was to grab all Britain for the English Monarchy and aristocracy.

    As a side note – remember that Gideon Osborne is the heir apparent to two old Irish Baronetcies – these were not Irish nobles but the English aristocrats who were in Ireland to manage the takeover of Ireland by the English. That so called aristocracy is named, “The Ascendancy”, by the Irish.

    Just like the Reformation in Scotland it never was really about religion but of land grabbing by the aristocracy who have always used religion as a tool to get the common folks to do their dirty work for them.

  250. defo says:

    “Plans to exploit Iraq’s oil reserves were discussed by government ministers and the world’s largest oil companies the year before Britain took a leading role in invading Iraq, government documents show.”

    “Five months before the March 2003 invasion, Baroness Symons, then the Trade Minister, told BP that the Government believed British energy firms should be given a share of Iraq’s enormous oil and gas reserves as a reward for Tony Blair’s military commitment to US plans for regime change.”

    “Tony Blair, 6 February 2003: “Let me just deal with the oil thing because… the oil conspiracy theory is honestly one of the most absurd when you analyse it. The fact is that, if the oil that Iraq has were our concern, I mean we could probably cut a deal with Saddam tomorrow in relation to the oil. It’s not the oil that is the issue, it is the weapons…”

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/secret-memos-expose-link-between-oil-firms-and-invasion-of-iraq-2269610.html

  251. K1 says:

    defo, I think it’s worth putting that entire article on here.

    Note, this is not being ‘offered’ as evidence in the Chilcot report.

    A total carve up well underway before wmd”s were even a glint in Blair’s eye in 2003.

    Total lies and denials for over a decade about the ‘oil’ being absolutely what this was about, but they couldn’t get their backbenchers on board wi that imperialist ‘oil grab’ schtick could they?

    So they sorted out DR Kelly and sold us the biggest lie ever told in the modern era to take us into an illegal and immoral war, slaughtering millions and directly causing our so-called ‘terrorism’.

    All for profit. That’s yer global elite in action right there, greed on stilts and tae hell wi the consequences.

    Chilcot will be a whitewash. Tony Blair along with all the players are war criminals. They will never be brought to justice.

    Sickening.

    ‘Plans to exploit Iraq’s oil reserves were discussed by government ministers and the world’s largest oil companies the year before Britain took a leading role in invading Iraq, government documents show.

    The papers, revealed here for the first time, raise new questions over Britain’s involvement in the war, which had divided Tony Blair’s cabinet and was voted through only after his claims that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.

    The minutes of a series of meetings between ministers and senior oil executives are at odds with the public denials of self-interest from oil companies and Western governments at the time.

    The documents were not offered as evidence in the ongoing Chilcot Inquiry into the UK’s involvement in the Iraq war. In March 2003, just before Britain went to war, Shell denounced reports that it had held talks with Downing Street about Iraqi oil as “highly inaccurate”. BP denied that it had any “strategic interest” in Iraq, while Tony Blair described “the oil conspiracy theory” as “the most absurd”.

    But documents from October and November the previous year paint a very different picture.

    Five months before the March 2003 invasion, Baroness Symons, then the Trade Minister, told BP that the Government believed British energy firms should be given a share of Iraq’s enormous oil and gas reserves as a reward for Tony Blair’s military commitment to US plans for regime change.

    The papers show that Lady Symons agreed to lobby the Bush administration on BP’s behalf because the oil giant feared it was being “locked out” of deals that Washington was quietly striking with US, French and Russian governments and their energy firms.

    Minutes of a meeting with BP, Shell and BG (formerly British Gas) on 31 October 2002 read: “Baroness Symons agreed that it would be difficult to justify British companies losing out in Iraq in that way if the UK had itself been a conspicuous supporter of the US government throughout the crisis.”

    The minister then promised to “report back to the companies before Christmas” on her lobbying efforts.

    The Foreign Office invited BP in on 6 November 2002 to talk about opportunities in Iraq “post regime change”. Its minutes state: “Iraq is the big oil prospect. BP is desperate to get in there and anxious that political deals should not deny them the opportunity.”

    After another meeting, this one in October 2002, the Foreign Office’s Middle East director at the time, Edward Chaplin, noted: “Shell and BP could not afford not to have a stake in [Iraq] for the sake of their long-term future… We were determined to get a fair slice of the action for UK companies in a post-Saddam Iraq.”

    Whereas BP was insisting in public that it had “no strategic interest” in Iraq, in private it told the Foreign Office that Iraq was “more important than anything we’ve seen for a long time”.

    BP was concerned that if Washington allowed TotalFinaElf’s existing contact with Saddam Hussein to stand after the invasion it would make the French conglomerate the world’s leading oil company. BP told the Government it was willing to take “big risks” to get a share of the Iraqi reserves, the second largest in the world.

    Over 1,000 documents were obtained under Freedom of Information over five years by the oil campaigner Greg Muttitt. They reveal that at least five meetings were held between civil servants, ministers and BP and Shell in late 2002.

    The 20-year contracts signed in the wake of the invasion were the largest in the history of the oil industry. They covered half of Iraq’s reserves – 60 billion barrels of oil, bought up by companies such as BP and CNPC (China National Petroleum Company), whose joint consortium alone stands to make £403m ($658m) profit per year from the Rumaila field in southern Iraq.

    Last week, Iraq raised its oil output to the highest level for almost decade, 2.7 million barrels a day – seen as especially important at the moment given the regional volatility and loss of Libyan output. Many opponents of the war suspected that one of Washington’s main ambitions in invading Iraq was to secure a cheap and plentiful source of oil.

    Mr Muttitt, whose book Fuel on the Fire is published next week, said: “Before the war, the Government went to great lengths to insist it had no interest in Iraq’s oil. These documents provide the evidence that give the lie to those claims.

    “We see that oil was in fact one of the Government’s most important strategic considerations, and it secretly colluded with oil companies to give them access to that huge prize.”

    Lady Symons, 59, later took up an advisory post with a UK merchant bank that cashed in on post-war Iraq reconstruction contracts. Last month she severed links as an unpaid adviser to Libya’s National Economic Development Board after Colonel Gaddafi started firing on protesters. Last night, BP and Shell declined to comment.

    Not about oil? what they said before the invasion

    * Foreign Office memorandum, 13 November 2002, following meeting with BP: “Iraq is the big oil prospect. BP are desperate to get in there and anxious that political deals should not deny them the opportunity to compete. The long-term potential is enormous…”

    * Tony Blair, 6 February 2003: “Let me just deal with the oil thing because… the oil conspiracy theory is honestly one of the most absurd when you analyse it. The fact is that, if the oil that Iraq has were our concern, I mean we could probably cut a deal with Saddam tomorrow in relation to the oil. It’s not the oil that is the issue, it is the weapons…”

    * BP, 12 March 2003: “We have no strategic interest in Iraq. If whoever comes to power wants Western involvement post the war, if there is a war, all we have ever said is that it should be on a level playing field. We are certainly not pushing for involvement.”

    * Lord Browne, the then-BP chief executive, 12 March 2003: “It is not in my or BP’s opinion, a war about oil. Iraq is an important producer, but it must decide what to do with its patrimony and oil.”

    * Shell, 12 March 2003, said reports that it had discussed oil opportunities with Downing Street were ‘highly inaccurate’, adding: “We have neither sought nor attended meetings with officials in the UK Government on the subject of Iraq. The subject has only come up during conversations during normal meetings we attend from time to time with officials… We have never asked for ‘contracts’.”

  252. K1 says:

    Ach, alert reader fail. That article is from 2011, I didn’t read the byline and date afore posting. Apologies folks, my bad 🙁

  253. K1 says:

    *takes self back tae the factory fur a new chip*

  254. Onwards says:

    That “born to reign over us” banner makes me want to vomit.

    I can understand those who value the monarchy because of tradition or tourism value, and they do a good job at times. But in this day and age, even the royal family know they are only performing a ceremonial role.

    Those who actually consider themselves lowly subjects to be reigned over.. what the hell is wrong with them ?

  255. Al Dossary says:

    @K1

    Was the invasion of Iraq about oil (amongst other things) – Without a doubt.

    Are Shell, BP et al exploiting the Iraqis? Not as much as the Iraqi government are exploiting them.

    Typically Shell, BP, CNPC etc negotiated a deal whereby they would receive some $2 or so per barrel produced, plus the associated costs of building the infrastructure to extract the oil.

    The Iraqis paid this $2 per barrel by giving them an equivalent amount of oil to sell on the open market which was not a problem when oil was $100 per barrel.

    In BP’s instance that $2 per barrel amounts to $3 billion assuming the Rumala field is still pumping it’s 1.5 million bpd.

    In Shell’s case at Majnoon (target production 1.5 million bpd) the accountants had calculated that at $2 per barrel produced they would see a net return on investment of 10.5% over the life of the field IIRC.

    Such a disgrace that the UK Govt was so short sighted from the 1980’s to the present day.

  256. Weebod1 says:

    My brother, despite growing up in a Catholic household was a Rangers fan, a very good footballer and actually had his dream come true when he played as a teenager for Rangers boys club.

    This came about as my dad, the most un-bigoted person I know, always harped on about ‘supporting your local team’ he wasn’t a football fan himself.. But if Aberdeen were playing in Europe…. You supported the Scottish team… And that was his view whether it was Celtic, Rangers or anyone else.

    The closest ground to my childhood home was Ibrox.. So when my brother showed an interest… My dad took him to the nearest stadium to watch a game.

    That same man…. Who couldn’t give a hoot who or what you were.. Saw sense to pull my brother from Rangers boys club after week upon month of sectarian hatred directed at him… Bearing in mind he was about 13 years old.

    The other boys were fine… They saw him as a natural goal scorer… Get the ball to him and he’d score… And boys want to win.. But coaching staff, they were different… They had no time for a catholic.. No matter how much he loved the bears.
    They’d drive along our street to pick up the boys for training and leave him behind.. He’d be standing beside his team mates to go together to be told… “No room for you” often it fell to me and other family to drive him to training and games.
    He was subjected to the usual ‘Big Jock knew’ and you’ll be ok here son…whilst being taunted and vilified in just as awful a way possible.. It’s not easy being a ‘dirty fenian’ when all you see yourself as is a fan! At his age, he didn’t even know what big jock was suppose to have known anyway!

    Eventually my dad sat him down and told him to think about playing for another club as no matter how good he was… There were people who’d hate him just because of who his family were and what school he went to.
    That was the end of his Rangers days… And he never looked back to them in the same light again.
    It was like having a dog that continually bit you.

    He did go on and play for another club.. But a particularly nasty chest infection that turned into pneumonia ended his career. Wintergreen may warm your legs when it’s freezing and you’re playing football… But it’s not gonna lift a chest infection when your continually cold, wet and exhausted.

  257. One_Scot says:

    ‘That “born to reign over us” banner makes me want to vomit’

    When I first saw it I genuinely thought it was photoshopped.

  258. Bilptoe says:

    Robert,

    Imagine if you will, one Chris Evans donning an open-faced UJ emblazoned helmet and a yellow souwester, driving a willies jeep towing a UJ emblazoned reliant robin up a Northumberland hillock ranged against third rate actor and stars & stripe helmeted Joey from “friends” towing likewise with his good ole trade-mark million dollar coupon in a US V Britain R,W & B flagfest combo.

    True, it was a terrible show previously but after all the hype of the new version the producers have surpassed all expectations in delivering a truly Bottom Gear programme even most folk south of the border would be loathe to sit through.

    A sh1tefest of unionjackery of the most cringeable order.

  259. Ken500 says:

    The Tory Royal family are not impartial. The only reason to have a Royal as a Head of State is because they are impartial. They are party to vulnerable people being sanctioned and starved to death. They take part in illegal wars. They are greedy tax evaders. The carry on to give a 10 minute speech is just ridiculous. So are many of the expensive sycophant occasions.

    The hypocrisy of the 1WW hang wringing is totally fake. An apology might be more forthcoming. It was the inbred European Royals that caused it. Cousins married cousins and their parents were cousins. British, German, Danish and Russian. Victoria’s grandson’s. Although the Royals in Britain were more liberal about devolving power. The reason they survived? Rewriting history. The German and Russian did not.

    Some football fans in their ignorance support a system that keeps them impoverished. The supporters are being taken for a ride by manipulating, corrupt, greedy management. No wonder the terraces are empty.

    The US and UK Gov knew there were no WMD’s. The CIA and M15 knew the informer was a fantasist, who was paid £Millions. The was no way Iraq had a rocket that could hit Europe. The 45mins claim was that a rocket could hit Cyprus (base) in 45mins. Highly improbable. The WMD were paint pots at the back of a lorry. Blair and his colleagues knew that. MI5 proceeded to lie. Scarlett got honoured.

    Billions of people all round the world protested and that was ignored. The majority could see it would be a disaster, as it turned out to be.

    The migrant crisis in Europe is a result. The Tories instead of taking their responsibility for their part in bombing of the Middle East then try to blame the EU? Members who did not bomb the Middle East. They have a Referendum about membership of the EU. Total non self awareness. Total ignorance beyond belief. Other European countries have to pick up the mess.

    3Million people intergrating into 500Million should not be a major problem. Blair and Brown should be put in prison.

    The UK gov high taxes have diminished the Oil industry in the UK. More Oil & Gas has to be imported putting up the balance of payments deficit and the debt. No enterprise and high taxes. Losing thousands of jobs in the UK.

    Shale Gas in being imported from the US. Gas is being fracked in the rest of the UK. Osbourne is incompetent and inexperienced. The Tory/Unionists are cheats and liars. Fabricating expenses and committing electoral fraud.

  260. mealer says:

    The solution is in the hands of the fans of all clubs.Email your club demanding sanctions against bigots.

  261. @Ian More (Mhor)
    Point well taken.

    Loathe, generally, how sport has been hijacked by the established orders for their benefit, be it a team or individual contest of skills – boxing a classic gangster example defied by Dirk McTaggart as the almost ultimate a amateur exponent of the art (watched his last fight at Kirkie Town Hall with my father).

    Wide boys using it, in all its manifold expressions, for their own ends political and financial.

    Cannot stand the bourgeois corruption of gowf, especially, although I enjoyed caddying for friends as I also operated as the bartender on my tootsies with the cargo in the bag, and could have the spiritual space to be stunned by the surrounding scenery.

    Tennis beyond foul given it is so tainted by snobbery (the superb athletes excepted including Mr Murray who is subject to the inanely partisan Anglo-Brit drivel constantly).

    Always found running an almost spiritual, in-the-zone form of mobile meditation in the rural areas of Scotland. Buddha on the hoof.

    Still, despise football/soccer, Kirkintilloch Rob Roy excepted, for its active encouragement of the mindless herd instinct, and I await a convincing, evidence-based argument to the contrary.

    Fitba’ and the Saxe-Coburg-Gothas, simply mass mind-bending tools for the Anglo-Brit establishment, and the SFA and SRU their willing pimps.

  262. Big Jock says:

    The irony with that banner and their Queen is that she would want feck all to do with them. She would see them as the great unwashed commoner scum. The one they so adore would despise their types.

    They don’t do self awareness or understand that being sycophantic and submissive. Is exactly how they are programmed to be controlled by the state.

    I had a depressing conversation with 8 no voters in the pub. Yes I was outnumbered 8\1. I said this table does not reflect the way Scotland voted. Unionists tend to keep narrow company so they can all agree with each other.

    Comments ranged from you had your vote you lost, once in a generation, yes voters were ill informed, it wasn’t the right time, not everyone that voted Snp wants independence.

    My answers were no one other than Salmond said once in a generation. If you believe in God but 3 of your neighbours don’t do you become an atheist. Indi support is at 48%. You vote Snp then expect a referendum at some point not independence that’s democracy. When will Scotland be ready as the UK continues to cut and damage Scotland. Are professor Devine,Tommy Sheridan, Nicola Sturgeon, me my family all ill informed.

    I tell you this the Unionists want the 45 to just go away. They are arrogant selfish bustards. Same with the Euro vote. They said Scotland is in UK so it doesn’t matter if we vote stay no referendum. It’s a strange form of nationhood where they allow Wm to decide for them and sook it up

    It’s depressing listening to these so called Scots.

  263. Capella says:

    Shona Robison is the Minister for Health and Sport. Tackling the sectarian blight and providing better mental health facilities for the condition might be a welcome distraction. Might need some support though.

  264. Anagach says:

    Sport is the opium of the masses.

    Televised sport being the crack cocaine.

    Yes a bit of a harsh view, but when ‘News’ leads with celebrity team managers changing jobs, and given the that TV sport rights appears to be a Marianas sized trench filled with cash and pond scum exemplars of humanity, I feel such a view is supported by the evidence.

  265. Ken500 says:

    Both the Protestants and Catholics wanted Home Rule in Ireland. It was a joint mass movement, throughout the 19C. Led by a Protestant landowner Charles Stewart Parnell. It was not Protestant versus Catholic. It was the Irish people versus the Westminster hierarchy. No Universal suffrage. People were discriminated against. People in Scotland and Ireland (Catholics) were discriminated against. They could not own a horse (transport) or carry a sword (defence). That is why a Protestant led the Home Rule Movement. It was an association with a separated but non divorced woman (divorce was not allowed or extremely difficult), which fractured the Movement. They had a child. The ‘scandal’ led to Parnell’s demise and early death. History could have been different. It was the offensive British State rule the majority of people in Ireland were protesting against, not each other.

    A Home Rule Bill was passed in April 1914, weeks before the start of the 1WW. It would have been passed in the Lords in the September. A faction of the Irish Nationalists agreed to set it aside to join the 1WW effort. They formed a separate Battalion. The Protestants leaders would not fight along side with them. The Home Rule Bill was laid aside for the duration. The Unionist in Ulster began arming during the 1WW. Capt Crawford. They began illegally importing weapons, supported by the Unionist forces based in the North of Ireland. The Nationalists did the same. The Easter Uprising 1916.

    Westminster (illegally) partitioned Ireland in 1922 led by Lloyd George, a Liberal. It led to conflict and Michael Collins demise. Catholics in Northern Ireland were discriminated against by the Protestant hierarchy. Orange Lodge Masons supported by the British State. A apartheid State breaking UK Law. Catholics in some parts of Belfast did not have the vote up to the 1960’s. There was discrimination in jobs and housing. 90% of public sector jobs, houses etc went to Protestants. Total illegal discrimination. That is what led to the Troubles. The Masonic handshake. It still continues to this day supported by the British State/Unionists at Westminster.

    Demographically Ireland could vote to re-unite.

    Northern Ireland (Ulster – six counties) 2million people raises £28Billion in tax revenues and gets £14Billion (50% more) = £42Billion. Funded at Norwegian levels for Unionist votes at Westminster. The flag waving, violence and discrimination continues supported by the Unionist at Westminster.A power sharing agreement which is often acrimonious.

  266. defo says:

    K1
    Me 2.
    Still valid.

  267. Big Jock says:

    Ken- Exactly the divide and rule the Brits love.

    They are trying it in Scotland. The majority of people born in Scotland voted yes though. I still think for indi 2 we should have Scottish born people voting. Otherwise we allow students,2 year resident, Anglos with agendas trying to stop us. Is it harsh! Yes but I spoke with an English guy who said he would always Vote no to protect his nationality. He said most of his friends did the same and still would.

    Maybe a 10 year residency qualifier would be good the next time. Are we not being over generous with who decides the future of our nation. It is similar to Eire in that people not from Scotland can stop us.

  268. heedtracker says:

    Loathe, generally, how sport has been hijacked by the established orders for their benefit, be it a team or individual contest of skills –

    Our chums in the south really love it when Scottish athlete’s do something rather unusual for teamGB, win.

    http://archive.is/neWpJ

    Prince of Perversity, Tim Henman.

  269. Ken500 says:

    The Scottish Gov has funded the essential AWPR road in the NE.

    The Leader of ACC (Labour/Unionist/(non) Green) has got the City into £Millions of unwanted debt. Building a disgusting carbuncle in the City centre that The majority did not want. Total vandalism. Spending £30Millions renovating a Art Galley that the majority did not want. Refusing a gift of £80Million to pedestrianise and regenerate the City Centre. Now having the absolute check and affront to say the City/shire is underfunded. After wasting £Millions/debt destroying the City centre. People were protesting in the street and on line. To no avail. Now going on about ‘bread and butter’. What utter nonsense. ‘Twa rowies and a cup of tea Unionists’. They just haven’t got a clue. Now they expect to be bailed out because of their total incompetence. May 2017.

    The City/shire was underfunded 30% of all other local authorities for over thirty years by Labour/Unionist dominate Cosla. While £Billions of Oil revenues went to the UK/Unionist Treasury to be squandered and wasted. On illegal wars, banking fraud and tax evasion. Labour/Unionists are total imcompetent liars.

  270. T.roz says:

    It’s not just sport that suffers from bigotry, the Scottish whisky industry is rammed full of orange type unionists in all the top positions. And sectarianism is demonstrated in the industry through attempted humour, subtley sorting out who goes where.

  271. defo says:

    Anagach says:

    “Sport is the opium of the masses….”

    Tune out. Drop in.

    Consider, if you will the proverbial Martian sitting (as unobtrusively as possible)down your local boozer.
    Observing intoxicated Humans shouting and applauding at the unresponsive screen on the wall, which is projecting images of 22 other bipeds, who are chasing after possession of a small ball in a stadium which is filled with other simians variously singing of their desire to never surrender, walk inordinately long distances twice, or to see if someone called Bobby would like a chicken supper, our bewildered anthropologist should be forgiven for asking the Martian equivalent of ‘WTF is this a’ aboot ?’

    What did the Romans ever do for us, apart from the ‘panem et circenses’ lessons ?

  272. Capella says:

    FYI there are no Greens on Aberdeen City Council in spite of Ken’s peculiar obsession:

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aberdeen_City_Council

  273. Dr Jim says:

    Folk still complaining about English people being allowed to vote next time round are quite right
    But what about the Irish, surely they shouldn’t be allowed to vote
    And some of these Polish folk voted NO because they thought they’d be flung out

    I’m almost sure I saw a Mexican the other day, definitely looked like one, we have to do something about them, I’m with Trump on that, get the wall up I say

    I’m sure the guy next door to me isn’t Scottish, anyway I don’t like the look of him whatever he is, don’t want him voting

    Eh? Hmmn? Who else now? and where did I put my Armband and Cap, Oh aye, next to my Jackboots

  274. Tinto Chiel says:

    “Maybe a 10 year residency qualifier would be good the next time.”

    It is frustrating when you consider the electoral elements which probably swung the No vote, be it students, holiday-homers or postal votes but we don’t know as yet who will be in control of any Indyref2 arrangements. Will the SG assert our sovereignty and push ahead when the time is right or will Westminster end up I control like the last time?

    We came pretty close with an “open door” policy and this was deliberate because AS didn’t want to get dragged into any measures which could be construed as anti-English. You can imagine how that would have been presented by MSM.

    To me the main areas of weakness were the postal vote arrangements and the lack of an exit poll. I think AS regretted the latter and I think we all rather naively forgot the old French saying about “perfidious Albion”.

    We are locked in a battle with a regime desperate to hold on to the Last Colony for a whole host of reasons, and none of them to our benefit.

    Stoking the sectarian fires is just one weapon in their arsenal.

  275. heedtracker says:

    Capella says:
    30 May, 2016 at 9:47 am
    FYI there are no Greens on Aberdeen City Council in spite of Ken’s peculiar obsession:

    One Green ACC councilor blocked Trump. One, Capella. AWPR bypass blocked by nimby tories with a lot of private money paying for a lot of High Court blocks on a bypass for Aberdeen and all of it led and coordinated by Green party, local and national.

    Its a Green nimby world because roads are bad for the environment, in Scotland. In England, not so much.

    http://stv.tv/news/north/22525-mixed-reaction-to-bypass-ruling/

    The Green Party also described the decision as a “body blow to North-east communities”.

    Patrick Harvie MSP said: “Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire have been desperate for decades for a real answer to the region’s transport problems, a solution based on Crossrail and other investment in public transport.

  276. K1 says:

    defo, agreed.

  277. Big Jock says:

    The point is this about the vote. 80% of people from England voted no. there is one group of people determined to stop Scotland. I am not talking about other nationalities. They are largely 50\50 and open minded about our future.

    I honestly want everyone to be able to vote. But there is one ethnic group of people who are intransigent. Ignoring that will cost us next time. So 10 year residency is fair on all.

  278. Well said Rab , im sure there are thousands of people in Scotland who have turned away from Rangers because the club seem to use sectarianism ; entitlement and grudge as a marketing tool now.

  279. Fred says:

    Some good posts, enjoyed Lochside’s insight in particular. Brexit could have interesting results for Northern Ireland where large numbers of its people have Irish passports and therefore are EU citizens.

  280. Whether we like it or not the voting intentions of immigrants to Scotland are very important. These folk must be respected and persuaded that an independent Scotland is in their interest, not denied a vote.
    In a world scattered in Scottish emigrants no other position is acceptable.

    However, laying aside the postal vote, which was, at best, inadequately supervised ( I heard anecdotally of a home in this area which provided 5 NO postal votes from people who hadn’t lived here for over twenty years),it is entirely possible that the vote of immigrants from England cost us the referendum. There are 480,000 of these (about 8.5% of our population) and a Survation poll showed them voting 76% for NO. It is not as simple as that however. These are mainly retired persons and our own retired persons appeared to have done about the same.

    What we can be sure of is that the sectarian issue and the “SNP antiEnglish” issue will be weapons in our opponents armoury and we must carefully prepare our responses

  281. Joannie says:

    Am I the only one who read through that Rangers guy’s tweets and felt sad for him? Clearly a victim of care in the community.

  282. Papko says:

    Tinto Chiel says:
    30 May, 2016 at 9:54 am
    “Maybe a 10 year residency qualifier would be good the next time.”

    It is frustrating when you consider the electoral elements which accrued to the YES vote, be it Long term unemployed , work-shy , the urban poor , part time public sector workers .

    What YES never seems to understand , nor have they confronted , is “what was wrong with their campaign”, why did it alienate so many in Scotland .
    basically because it was an amorphous shambles, designed to appeal to all , but satisfying none .

    You may persuade a Dundonian to vote for you (not too hard by tradition militant and anti establishment).

    And when it all goes belly up , middle Scotland is left to pay for it all ,

    the residents of Dundee,can go back to their traditional lifestyle of “cant work wont work ” in the morning .

    That was the essential flaw , an overwhelmingly “positive ” message , from folk not renowned for their “positive attitude to life .
    Made the NO voters all the more determined to hold their British identity close to their heart , and let the ballot box do the talking .

    What i cant understand is spite of the 100k volunteers ramming a tonne of pamphlets into every letter box, the YES side did not take this on board and actually “do”
    something positive, the Farms around Dundee are full of foreigners, why could not the long term benefit claimants , went to work there, (are thousands of vacancies every year )

    It would only have been for a Summer, and it would “Have messed their benefits up”, but it would have made immeasurable impressions on the many Scots who get no such “lifestyle choice”, and have to work and pay tax regardless.

    Indyref2 must reject all the flim flammery and avoid getting bogged down in technicalities , you either want Scotland to run its own affairs r you don’t , just as you will never persuade a Britnat to give up Britain,it will be best faced by Scotland right or wrong .

    In which case a 100 years of Austeritymax , will matter not one fig to you.

  283. liz says:

    Only one comment to make.

    Brilliant article and even more brilliant comments below line.

    Compare and contrast to BLC in most Yoon papers, miles apart both in intelligence and informed comments.

    Great stuff.

  284. Papko at 11.51

    “What YES never seems to understand , nor have they confronted , is “what was wrong with their campaign”, why did it alienate so many in Scotland .”

    Because it didn’t.
    What defeated the YES campaign (if it was actually defeated) was the whole of the mainstream media and broadcasting, despite which it came within a whisper of succeeding.

    Here is something to ponder,

    Pre referendum
    For the Union 50% For independence 30% Don’t know 20%

    Post Referendum
    For the union 30% For independence 50% Don’t know 20%

    The DKs are the key. Persuade them that Scotland is self sustaining and we win.

  285. Petra says:

    Thanks for sharing your very emotive story Rab.

    We have REAL problem in Scotland and the only way that it’s ever going to be dealt with effectively is for the vast majority of decent people to speak out like you and say ‘not in my name’ …. ‘enough is enough’.

    British Troops Singing Sectarian Songs at Ibrox 28.09.2013

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjVtI2Be9vg

    Celtic v Rangers Old Firm documentary 1 / 4

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DCLmvx4kWHM&list=PLA486050972E8B5E4

    Football, Faith and Flutes (Celtic Vs Rangers) — The REAL Documentary on Sectarianism (Full Length)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cvkfJM6DrCQ

  286. Orri says:

    Not sure if Holyrood could intervene and prevent the sale of season tickets to addresses outwith Scotland. I’d expect we’d get complaints from Celtic though.

    The thing is the picture from a few articles back of the “fan” sticking the boot in has led to him being id’d as most likely being from Ulster. The T-shirt and red hand tat on his elbow were the main clue.

    This is, unfortunately, why an anti sectarian push restricted to Scotland will struggle. Making it clear we are sick to the back teeth of being used as a proxy battlefield and will boot your balls so hard you can spit them out might be the only way.

  287. Joannie says:

    Or maybe the Scottish government could co-operate with the authorities in Northern Ireland in tackling sectarianism in football. Tackle the poison at source, so to speak.

  288. Petra says:

    What can we do about it?

    I’ve had my say about the segregation of schoolchildren so no point in dredging that one up on here again however we could do something about the number of OO walks that take place throughout Scotland. If you’re not one bit happy about this complain to your local Council and the Police.

    These ‘walks’ …. numerous …. including ‘practise walks’ (you couldn’t make it up) involve the sectarian issue, and ALL that entails, the cost of Policing (taxpayers money), the fact that Police are being removed to cover ‘walks’ when they’re needed elsewhere, the inconvenience to traffic etc and more than anything that their ‘marches’ seem to be illegal.

    From Craig Murray’s site:

    ”As to the legal position, Orange displays are very plainly illegal under the Public Order Act 1936. This has not been repealed or contradicted by subsequent legislation and it does apply to Scotland. It is not otiose – it has been used against striking miners and against Irish Republicans.

    Section 1 (I)

    Subject as hereinafter provided, any person
    who in any public place or at any public meeting wears
    uniform signifying his association with any political
    organisation or with, the promotion of any political
    object shall be guilty of an offence :

    The Orange Order registered as a participant in the referendum campaign. It is therefore by definition an avowedly political organisation.

    Without any need to get in to the fact it is the only remaining effective part of Scottish Labour and Gordon Matheson’s sole resource on the ground.

    If section 1 is not enough for you, and you would have to be a dedicated sophist to claim it does not apply, let me refer you to Section 2b which bans “the display of physical force in promoting any political object”. No reasonable person who has ever seen an Orange march can deny that is precisely what it is. (I do not use their lying term of walk designed precisely to obscure this truth).

    Whether Orange street events should be allowed is a difficult question. Whether they are illegal is an entirely different question. They are illegal, and the fact the law is not enforced takes us back again to the subject of the institutional corruption of the Scottish legal establishment. I guarantee you that if I suggested we walk down Sauchiehall Street all wearing black berets in support of independence, we would be in the pokey PDQ.”

  289. Orri says:

    http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/Edw8and1Geo6/1/6/section/1


    Prohibition of uniforms in connection with political objects.

    (1)Subject as hereinafter provided, any person who in any public place or at any public meeting wears uniform signifying his association with any political organisation or with the promotion of any political object shall be guilty of an offence:

    Provided that, if the chief officer of police is satisfied that the wearing of any such uniform as aforesaid on any ceremonial, anniversary, or other special occasion will not be likely to involve risk of public disorder, he may, with the consent of a Secretary of State, by order permit the wearing of such uniform on that occasion either absolutely or subject to such conditions as may be specified in the order.
    (2)Where any person is charged before any court with an offence under this section, no further proceedings in respect thereof shall be taken against him without the consent of the Attorney-General [F1except such as are authorised by [F2section 6 of the Prosecution of Offences 1979]], so, however, that if that person is remanded in custody he shall, after the expiration of a period of eight days from the date on which he was so remanded, be entitled to be [F3released on bail] without sureties unless within that period the Attorney-General has consented to such further proceedings as aforesaid.

    Context makes all the difference and Craig Murray might just be talking out of his arse. Unless his object was to campaign for it’s repeal on the basis of it simply being a tool of political repression. It’s a vile piece of legislation which seems to be being misapplied in order to suppress opposition.

  290. Hobbit says:

    I am an active Evangelical Christian. I can assure people on Wings that at my end of the M8 (Edinburgh), no-one in the churches here has any time for the Orange Order. What I see in the Orange Order is tribalism, not Christian faith.

    On a sporting note, things like sectarianism and the underlying culture of violence, makes Scottish football its own worst enemy. It would be better if the Old Firm could be exiled to England’s League One, but I know that that is asking too much.

  291. Papko says:

    Because it didn’t.
    What defeated the YES campaign (if it was actually defeated) was the whole of the mainstream media and broadcasting, despite which it came within a whisper of succeeding.

    Here is something to ponder,

    Pre referendum
    For the Union 50% For independence 30% Don’t know 20%

    Post Referendum
    For the union 30% For independence 50% Don’t know 20%

    The DKs are the key. Persuade them that Scotland is self sustaining and we win.

    Hardly introspective analysis , why did the YES vote get majority in the poorest areas? , don’t they have access to MSM there.

    Why was turnout lowest in areas of Yes majority, why did more folk stay at home in Dunndee and Glasgow ?

    The full analysis has never been done , because the truth lies too close to home .

    good luck with the catchy slogan

    “Self sustaining Scotland over the Status quo”

    Just try handing out porridge at the foodbank 😉

  292. Big Jock says:

    Papko – Answer might lie at the bottom of the Clyde.Lol.

  293. Andy-B says:

    I’d say that this kind of sectarian hatred run deeper than just Rangers football fans.

  294. heedtracker says:

    The point is this about the vote. 80% of people from England voted no. there is one group of people determined to stop Scotland. I am not talking about other nationalities.

    4 million Scots could vote and 400k English had votes, or less. Do the 10% and its not going to make that a difference, if majority of Scots want out of the UK.

    Other news

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-hereford-worcester-36412814

    If English cops can nick this dude for an offensive T shirt, Scots cops can use the OBFA.

  295. Davros says:

    With regards to Indy Ref 2014, what about the ‘theory’ that the result was, er, fixed.

    As various other elections or votes may have been.

    @Orri,
    ‘Prevent season-ticket holders from outwith Scotland’?

    As a former Celtic season book holder in London for 10 years, think that’s a bit harsh!
    Even if I was Protestant, but am a (Irish)nationalist.

  296. Davros says:

    Oh and compliments to those posting so many interesting comments, especially the now lapsed fans of a certain club.

  297. Jim Stirling says:

    Thank goodness all those lovely Irish fellows in the green and white stripes are so kind and well behaved, so what if they sing pro IRA songs, so what if most of them think that they are Irish, so what if they sing songs about the brutal murder of a young UK soldier, so what if they wave the flag of a foreign country, it’s all in good sport right? Bad, Rangers,Bad bad Rangers.

    Just for clarification 44% of Catholics voted no, a majority of Scottish born people did vote yes. If the invaders from England and the other foreign born groups had not so overwhelmingly voted no we would already be independent.

  298. Joannie says:

    What’s wrong with Celtic fans “thinking they are Irish” and waving the Irish flag? You only reveal your own bigotry when you cite those as if they were bad things.

  299. Jim Stirling says:

    I was simply pointing out the hypocrisy of the anti-Rangers crowd, believe me despite being a Rangers fan the actions of a percentage of our support along with the disgusting actions at George square are an absolute disgrace and all bigotry should be hounded from Scottish football.

    The fact that Celtic fans wave Irish flags and sing pro-IRA songs and have their own despicable bigots in their ranks, seems to be forgotten time and again. Both sides of the sectarian divide have done their parts to shame Scotland. The irony is folk here and on other forums bitch about people using the Union Jack which sadly as long as we remain part of the UK is representative of the kingdom we are part of. Though for me the saltire is and always has been my flag. Waving an Irish flag is as foreign to me as waving a French or German flag. From most of the comments I come across form the Celtic side Ireland seems to play a far greater role in their identity than Scotland. For those saying you never see the Scotland flag at Ibrox , I have never seen it at Celtic and no the pathetic green coloured flag with a cross is not the Scottish flag

  300. Papko says:

    “Just for clarification 44% of Catholics voted no, a majority of Scottish born people did vote yes. If the invaders from England and the other foreign born groups had not so overwhelmingly voted no we would already be independent.”

    Just occurred to me , if that’s the case why do the SNP want more immigration

    You would of thought if they restricted it to native born Scots , they would have a better chance ?

    Is it to

  301. Joannie says:

    Again, Jim Stirling – what is wrong with Celtic fans having an Irish identity and waving Irish flags?

  302. Mick DIAMOND says:

    Jim stirling, ive followed celtic all over england and europe. And ive personally never seen the fans do anything to “shame scotland”.

  303. Jim Stirling says:

    @Mick Diamond, of course you haven’t lol looking the other way is a bit of a Celtic thing , @ Joanne there is nothing wrong with being Irish and waving Irish flags if you are in Ireland

  304. jim stirling says:

    Sorry Mick, that should have been an “old firm” thing not a “Celtic” thing.The actions of a number of Rangers fans is absolutely disgusting to me. My only point is that there are good and bad on both sides of the fence.

  305. Joannie says:

    So Irish people, and people of Irish descent, aren’t allowed in Scotland and/or aren’t allowed to wave Irish flags in Scotland? Riiiight. And I expect you see yourself as one of the reasonable Rangers fans, so I can imagine the level of twisted bitter hatred towards the Irish coming from the unreasonable ones.

  306. Derek says:

    Betty boop, this isn’t offensive behaviour at football. This is offensive behaviour behind a keyboard.
    This has nothing to do with football matches, and is nothing more than utter hatred for anyone who dares criticise their club….even if it’s criticism from within.
    The offensive behaviour act is making more of a criminal of ordinary fans, whilst leaving the scum above to bully and threaten people who dare speak out against them. Rangers themselves should be on the end of the offensive behaviour act, but they are untouchable as far as the media and Sfa are concerned.

  307. Jim Stirling says:

    Good God, Joanne talk about playing the victim card.Don’t you even see the irony of folk bitching about a club waving the UK flag{ which sadly we are still a part of so it is our flag},meanwhile many/most of those all too happy to attack Rangers, wave flags of and identify with a foreign country, I don’t care if it is Ireland or Iceland. Promoting one side as being anti-Scottish is comical when the most vociferous whiners wear shamrocks, wave Irish flags,and sing IRA songs which has absolutely nothing to do with Scotland

    There are despicable bigots and haters on both sides of the fence.The anti-Rangers anti-protestant agenda put forward by many on the comments pages on all the independence groups, are simply a way for them to spout their own petty sectarian hatreds under the guise of independence.

  308. Tony says:

    Inverclyder,really your post on 28th May,you seem tae have forgotten that Celtic players and directors also voted No on September 18th,2014.
    As for myself,I was born down sou think and my parents split,my mum was Protestant and dad Catholic.
    I was brought up tae Scotland as a bairn and went tae a Catholic school,it could easily have been a Protestant one if I stayed in England.
    Anyway,one thing that riles me big time is when Kaye Adams comes on on her morning show,often she will rabbit on and on about segregation in our schools,Kaye,if by any chance you happen tae read this,we never speak out against Protestant kids,at least not when I was at school.
    My best mate was a Protestant,sadly,he’s dead now,and he never called me names and vice versa so please think before you speak next time,okay,because it’s obvious you have a grudge against Catholicsome, at least that’s how you have ALWAYS came across,so please zip it,thank you.
    Right,let’s type about Rangers,what a team they’d have if they had decent directors on board instead of guys who are still stuck in the 17th century,the amount of guys on here who once supported them is incredible and I feel sorry that they cannot get tae see the club they love because of the hatred that still pours from all 4 stands,I got chatting tae Johnny Hubbard a few years ago in Ayr,he thinks it will change but not for a wee while yet,btw,the guy is a gentleman,trust me,it was good tae be in the presence of a true legend.



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