In the days after Celtic fan media held its first ever presser with Dominic McKay and Ange Postecoglou, the media response was spiteful, venomous and insulting.
The whole idea of it was treated with open scorn.
How dare our club treat us as equals with the mainstream press?
Was Dominic McKay out of his mind for sanctioning such a thing?
Today all of it sounds utterly ridiculous.
The media owes us an apology.
Since those disgraceful articles and editorials and barbs the whole situation has been upended.
Every word they said about us has backfired on them, spectacularly.
Far from being a collection of nutters incapable of behaving rationally, we now look amongst the calmest and most professional people in the room.
Which isn’t to say that we don’t lose the nut every once in a while, and get heated in debate … but just look at the lunacy and nonsense and bile filling up the environment in which we operate.
Even as I write this a national title is investigating its own journalists over their social media posts.
At least one of its employees actually penned a column on Alfredo Morelos which was described as openly racist.
A journalist at another paper started blocking people just the other day when he was pulled up because he referred to Kyogo as “the Jap.”
And even as all this is going on, a broadsheet editor allowed an article describing the racist Famine Song as a “bit of theatre.”
You actually couldn’t make that up.
Not that you have to, since The Daily Record itself once ran a piece, by Jim Traynor, which basically said much the same.
Over the weekend, Celtic fan media was being scrutinised like never before.
I have always been proud to be part of this community, but never more so than in the last few days when we’re under so much scrutiny and it has recorded such a pitiful return for our critics.
Thinking back to the media’s reaction to Ange and Dom doing that Q&A I really have to laugh.
Much of the press corps’ ire focussed on one question, the one asked by The Celtic Star.
But they would have found another excuse.
The characterisation of our fan reps as an embarrassing collection of weirdos and obsessives was wholeheartedly false; it now looks profoundly ill-judged at best when you consider what the last few days has exposed.
Ibrox’s fan media was always far more likely to disgrace their club.
But who knew that turning the spotlight, finally, on them would have revealed so much dirt on the press itself?
Who knew that there was so much ignorance and backward thinking amongst those self-styled guardians of the public good?
What an embarrassment is it for all concerned.
The criticisms which were levelled at Celtic for sanctioning a fan press event were absurd and idiotic even at the time.
In light of what we know has happened since I’d say the club and in particular Dominic McKay are owed an apology over that.
Nobody restricted the press that day.
Nobody jammed us all into the same room either.
Celtic certainly didn’t charge the media to attend, far less rewarded those who paid with having to share space with bigots, homophobes, racists and misogynists.
But then, as we’re learning, their own ranks contain more than a handful in a few of those categories anyway.
All of this has cast the criticism we got in the worst possible light, and there’s one more element I think I should mention, and bear with me as I make a bit of a leap.
It seems apparent to me that many of our fan reps will be from Catholic backgrounds.
I won’t say the majority; I neither know this or care about it.
But many of them, to be sure.
That’s why I find it fascinating, in respect of this, that a number of people have used the events of the last few weeks to re-open an old and multiple times discredited debate; the one on Catholic education and the allegedly “divisive” nature of it.
That so many of us are products of an education system which allegedly legitimises and even fosters division makes it all the more curious that nobody – and plenty are looking – can find any real evidence to support that idea in what Celtic fan media reps say online.
It’s almost as if, instead, our education has taught us to be tolerant and open and compassionate and understanding and welcoming.
It’s almost as if our outlook has been shaped around concepts like diversity and inclusivity; but how can this possibly be?
One of the things my education taught me was that if there are two sides of a debate you look at the constituent parts which make up those sides.
How can it be that in so many of the major issues I care about that I find myself lined up against the same sort of people?
Those advocating the abolition of Catholic education would do well to look at who their allies are, and wonder how they could have ended up sharing space with such bigoted trailer trash?
And whilst they do so they should ask themselves; are they sure that we’re the ones who come from an intolerant background?
That we’re the ones who were “forced” to consider others as different, and somehow lesser?
That it’s our schools that are the problem here?
Jesus, it would be funny if it wasn’t so tragic.
That aside, today I feel a little vindicated.
Today I feel a sense of pride and some satisfaction, but it’s tempered with sadness as well because I genuinely want to see the media win its war with the gutter dwellers of Ibrox, those people who drag down their club and shame this country … but in light of what we’re learning I think we’re owed an apology first for the way we, and Celtic, were being perceived not that long ago.
September 6, 2021 at 6:09 pm
Gerard Smart says:
September 6, 2021 at 6:34 pm
September 6, 2021 at 7:05 pm
September 6, 2021 at 10:46 pm
Pleasant enough read James thanks for that, however, you’ll never get an apology from either smsm or iboaks, it’s simply not in their nature,
They do not say the word ‘sorry’ and for me, that’s been omitted from their lexicography because of their delusional feeling of entitlement. Entitlement that was reinforced by the press and those that favour them(sfa & polis,govt.), hence the watp must equate to INFALLIBLE or, just incase there’s any buns reading this, they don’t make mistakes ie. they’re perfect so need for the word ‘sorry’ to ever be uttered.
Think of the buns that’ve already ’apologised’ in the press, it’s lip service because they never actually say the words; ‘I/we are sorry’ NEVER.
Far be it for me to stick up for those in the press calling for the abolition of RC schools but I’ve never read anyone say that RC kids are taught to hate. The (spurious) argument is usually that separating kids makes them distrustful of or hateful towards non-RC kids, but this is clearly nonsense considering that kids from both sides of the “divide” play together after school and during the holidays!
When I was of primary school age there were only two or three other catholic boys in my neighbourhood, but many “non-denominational” lads and they were who I hung about with most of the time because the RC lads weren’t really football fans (and one of them was a bit of a kn*bend). I wasn’t told to “stay away frae thae prodissints!” and I don’t think they were told to stay away from me as I was always made very welcome in their homes.
Pretty much everyone I know from back then has a similar tale but I suppose it depends where you were brought up? For me it was a dying town in the West central belt, not in a deprived area (but not in the West end either). Like everywhere else it had it’s share of us vs them rammies and IRA/UVF grafitti but I don’t think the schools were breeding that at all. The real source of the problem is Ibrox.
The biggest mistake this country made was allowing another “Rangers” to exist. You take away the biggest breeding ground for hate in the country and eventually, decades later maybe, it will surely start to wane. In a parallel universe there was no Sevco saga, Rangers just died and their fans dispersed to follow other teams, They tried the bigoted chorus but were shouted down everywhere except at Tynecastle, but without a club capable (because Hearts are pish in every existence) of mounting a challenge to the almighty Alt-Celts they grew bored and just gave up.
Oh how I dream of finding a portal to such a universe….
To be honest I think this lot are much more staunch. There’s a real North of Ireland feel to them. Newco – Son of Frankenstein. HH
Comments are closed.