There are some stories which I write with a smile on my face.
This is definitely one of them.
In writing the headline it was obvious that I should frame it as a joke, but if it is then it’s a strange one because as yet there’s no punchline.
I don’t honestly expect a court to deliver one.
There is a story in the national press right now about a former Grangemouth worker who was fired, he says, because he’s an Ibrox fan.
This is news to any number of my Facebook friends who work at, worked at or who know people employed at Grangemouth; the characterisation of it being an “anti-Rangers” environment is, they say, ridiculous.
This is to say nothing for the hilarious irony of him portraying a workplace in heavy industry, in Scotland by Christ, as being occupied almost entirely of Celtic minded men of a vindictive bent. If it’s true, then the Unseen Hand has more influence and reach than even I dared to dream and far more than the average Sevconut ever feared.
I am willing to bet no-one in his family was ever asked what school they went to, or was deprived of a job in such an industry as a result of the answer.
Still, if there’s a scrap of truth to his central claim then of course that should be sanctioned and he should be compensated, because it’s just outrageous that this should be a factor in hiring or firing. If that was the extent of the story I wouldn’t even have commented on it, because it’s like a million workplace tales of the same sort which you hear about all the time.
But this one is a wee bit special. It has been elevated to a category all its own, because of what he and his lawyers are asking the court to consider. He wants being an Ibrox fan to be given special protection under the law, the same status afforded to religion, sex, nationality and race.
He thinks that he and his should be treated like some sort of protected species.
So yeah, I’ve framed the headline as a joke, but this guy means to be taken seriously.
His claim is meant to be taken seriously. And to me, that’s … kind of funny.
Being an Ibrox fan is, he says, “a philosophical belief just like pacifism, humanism and atheism.”
This hilarious suggestion is actually being argued by his legal team, who have either imbibed too much whiskey on his behalf or who anticipate a wave of cases from Scotland’s self-defining Jedi’s of which, according to the last census, there are some 14,000.
This is the legal basis on which he is claiming discrimination because of his “philosophical belief.” And if you’re not laughing yet you soon will be.
First he must prove that his support is “genuinely held.” Which he claims he can from attendance at Ibrox going back decades.
The next thing he must prove is that being an Ibrox fan is a “weight aspect of human life.” He says he can prove that with the memories he has of following the team with his dad. A nice sentiment, but it stretches the legal definition to the point you can hear it squeal.
It has to have a “level of seriousness” which he says he can prove because it costs time and money to follow them. And this barmy argument isn’t finished yet.
He has to demonstrate that it is a “way of life.” He says that he looks forward to his weekends all week and works so he can attend the games. I’d have thought putting food on the table for his family would have been his first priority, but I’ll get to that later on.
The last hurdle he has to get over is that all this is “‘worthy of respect in a democratic society.”
Which, as he says “is a doddle.”
So is frog breeding and collecting the assembled works of Jason Feinberg and Adam Seltzer, although if most civilised nations decided to outlaw that one I’d probably go along with it without too much dispute or debate.
He says that losing the job cost him £30,000, his home and so ultimately his marriage.
He was an independent contracter though, hired on a week by week basis, or I’ve read the article wrong.
If he’s basing paying the mortgage on that he’s off his nut. More likely is that he’s spent so much on trying to boost his MyGers score that he’s gone bankrupt.
If his wife has left him, which is sad, I wonder if it has something to do with his spending all their money following the team … or his apparently sincere contention that it’s a “philisophical belief.” Would you live with an obvious madman?
See, what makes this absolutely mental – aside from everything about it – is that you could stand in front of the judge and make the same argument about being a Justin Bieber fan, or one of those weird aforementioned folk who went to see every Scary Movie sequel.
Are all those people going to get special protection in the law as well?
No, and they wouldn’t dare ask for it.
And that’s what’s at the root cause of this.
This is another example of Sevco exceptionalism, of that band of goons amongst their fan-base who think they are special and deserving of being treated as such.
Some in the media want to frame this as a “fight for all football fans” but the guy himself sums it up thus; “I want to get ‘Rangers’ fans protected against suffering the same thing I have,” which pretty much spells it out for you.
I write this a lot, but you honestly couldn’t make this stuff up.
Brian lee says:
October 31, 2021 at 7:39 am
November 2, 2021 at 7:29 pm
This kind of thing would in my eyes or in his (eye)
Screams that there is a cult in the west of Glasgow. Not a team to entertain them.
Which I think is very true actually.
They do seem to feel entitled by the brainwashing and denial of the truth and only their version of what happens is the only one that should be regarded as gospel acorrding to wee Billy fae Govan.
Anyway good luck with this as I’m sure any decent person with more than one brain cell will see this for what it is a chance chancing his luck Hail hail
If this was the USA I’d suspect this of being a pre-cursor to Sevco claiming to be a religion for tax exemption purposes (as, if he won, they would be his de facto “church”).
Thankfully, religions don’t get tax exemption in the UK, just tax relief if they’re registered as charities and surely even Sevco wouldn’t claim that?
They might be on Skid Row, but they’re not worthy of charity, other than a mercy killing perhaps…
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