In Spite Of Inevitable Wailing, The SPFL Took The Correct Decision On The “Anthem”.

Image for In Spite Of Inevitable Wailing, The SPFL Took The Correct Decision On The “Anthem”.

This coming weekend will be the coronation. It hardly needs pointing out that few, if any, of us will be watching it with our Union Jack hats on. We’ll be a little bit busy watching our club win this title, the culmination of a long season but one where this outcome was never really in doubt. The strength of this side is amazing, and we’re due this.

The SPFL, in recognising that, has left it up to clubs how they want to handle this. There was a call for all of them to “play the anthem.”

But it’s a matter of choice, and that’s precisely as it should be. Hearts may well choose to do it … but our fans will express their deep disgust and contempt for it if they do, and the curtain twitchers can think what they want.

Across the city, there will be “celebrations.”

Muted ones, considering the sobering reality which faces The Peepul in the aftermath of the cup semi-final. But for a day they will forget that they are second best and cast themselves once more into the supremacist role. They will continue to tell themselves that this slavish devotion to monarchy makes them special.

There is a wonderful scene in Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver in which the campaign director of the New York Senator Charles Palantine – who’s running for President – argues on the phone with a supplier. The slogan they have chosen for the campaign will be familiar; “We Are The People.” What makes the scene wonderful is the reason for the argument.

The campaign has taken delivery of the latest batch of campaign badges. Their slogan has a very specific inflection point. But the buttons which have been sent to them have emphasised the wrong word. We hear just one side of the argument that follows, but it’s instructive nonetheless.

“You delivered two boxes. I think it’s a total of 5,000 campaign buttons. Now, all the ones we had before had – our slogan is ‘We are the people,’ and ‘are’ is underlined. These new buttons have ‘we’ underlined. That reads ‘’We are the people.’ Well, I think there’s a difference. ‘We are the people” is not the same as ‘We are the people.’ Let’s not fight. Look, we’ll make it real simple. We don’t pay for the buttons. We throw the buttons away, all right?”

It astonishes me that there are folk in our media who pretend not to know what the difference is. This is not semantics. The underlining of one word or the other changes the whole meaning of the sentence and our whole understanding of what is being implied.

The celebration of monarchy is, by its very nature, supremacist. It is a reminder that we don’t live in a meritocracy but in a system far darker and less conducive to upwards mobility.

For those who spit fury at Muslims or Jews and believe in all those stories about secret cabals running things behind the scenes, or secret plots to take over and subject us all to Sharia Law, a reminder; we do, in fact, live in a religious state here in Britain as anyone who has studied the oath we’re all being encouraged to take makes clear.

James Connolly summed up what monarchy best represents in his famous essay on the “Visit of King George V”, written in 1910.

“(Neither) in science, nor in art, nor in literature, nor in exploration, nor in mechanical invention, nor in humanising of laws, nor in any sphere of human activity has a representative of British royalty helped forward the moral, intellectual or material improvement of mankind. But that royal family has opposed every forward move, fought every reform, persecuted every patriot, and intrigued against every good cause. Slandering every friend of the people, it has befriended every oppressor. Eulogised today by misguided clerics, it has been notorious in history for the revolting nature of its crimes. Murder, treachery, adultery, incest, theft, perjury – every crime known to man has been committed by someone or other of the race of monarchs from whom King George is proud to trace his descent … We will not blame him for the crimes of his ancestors if he relinquishes the royal rights of his ancestors; but as long as he claims their rights, by virtue of descent, then, by virtue of descent, he must shoulder the responsibility for their crimes.”

The truth is, the number of people in this country who honestly care, who would classify themselves as dyed-in-the-wool monarchists, is probably pitifully small.

The number who would classify themselves as hard-core republicans, probably isn’t that much bigger.

Most people simply could not care less, whether they find the pageantry of these things mildly interesting, amusing or outright repulsive. Their fascination, of whatever variety, will last only as long as the day itself and they’ll put it all out of their minds.

For the SPFL to have forced every club to play the anthem would have been frankly disgusting, forcing conformity in what should pretty obviously be a personal choice.

Those who want to kiss the ring are welcome to do it, but this country, for all its sins, still allows freedom of thought, choice and ultimately expression. As we’ll see if Hearts decide to play it.

Share this article


  • Kevan McKeown says:

    It’s an institution that’s becomin more and more eroded as the years go on. It’ll take poss another generation tae finally put it out of relevancy and make it redundant. It makes absolutely nae difference tae the massive majority of people’s lives whatsoever. Especially in Scotland. Nothin tae gain by it and payin taxes tae sustain it. Great tae hear our support lettin them know tae on Sunday. Quite fuckin right. Spread the word.

  • S Thomas says:

    I’m not bothered about it one way or the other, if people want to celebrate it let them, if others don’t they are equally allowed to do that also. I’m neither for it or against it, it does not bother me one bit. Thankfully we don’t live in a Muslim county like you mentioned James.. were they make people do stuff. This is a democratic country, and that’s a great thing. People have the right to express their freedom of choice whether others might like it or not.

  • David O'Neill says:

    SFA had a decision to make for the split.. do we give Celtic a home game to celebrate a title win on the way to a treble… or give the rangers a home game so the zombies can celebrate a coronation, given that’s all the zombies have to celebrate the decision by SFA was very predictable. Let the zombies have their time in the sun, or should that be have their time licking Charles’s bum

  • Hugh Josey says:

    Your last paragraph is probably accurate at the moment but those rights are rapidly being eroded. Chuck signed the “Public Order Bill” just the other day which will see those rights disappear into the ether!

  • Martin says:

    Greek wholeheartedly except for the bit about this country allowing freedom of choice and expression. The past few months have shown me that this is certainly not the case.

    I absolutely cannot stand the existence of a monarchy (the individuals I’d jusge on their own merits) because it enshrines the idea that we are not considered equal as humans. That goes against every core belief in my being. It worries me that something so patently absurd is not only tolerated but promoted amongst society in the year 2023…

    Forcing the anthem would be a dreadful decision. I believe everyone has the right to their own beliefs, but they don’t have the right to mine.

  • John S says:

    I can’t see why a ‘celebration’ of monarchy should be displayed at a football match.

  • Eire goCeltic says:

    On 11 September 2022 at Edinburgh, Nicola pledged her Government’s allegiance
    to King Charles 111, his heirs and successors. Nicola should have added…
    “until the majority of Scottish people vote for independence”.
    Pope Leo X declared King Henry V111 “defender of the faith” thus Charlie boy inherits that title.
    That’s their illogical reason. He is also defender etc of Presbyterianism (Church of Scotland). Big mistake Leo. You should have known that’s the Bishops job. If Charles wants to be taken
    seriously, he should publicly say sorry and more, for his appalling treatment of Diana.
    At the King’s coronation, his loyal subjects will be asked to swear allegiance to their Sovereign.
    Plenty Scots, will be swearing!

  • Johnno says:

    Looking from the outside into this nonsense of a monarchy and even more so of a butchers anthem, I believe is actually an insult upon the Scottish nation as such.
    When Scotland play in either football or rugby there national anthem is recognised as “The flower of Scotland” and also recognising a stand against a monarchy.
    Yet a sporting occasion within Scotland is debating whether a butchers anthem should be played when not recognised within it’s own sport?
    Maybe I’m been a bit thick looking in from the outside as doesn’t make any sense whatsoever.
    If this butchers anthem is played this weekend then would only confirm that Scotland as a nation hasn’t really got an identity as such still as far as I am looking in upon the whole issue.

  • SSMPM says:

    There will be no freedom of choice. What a stupid assertion to make.
    It may not be a muslim country, whatever that’s meant to mean, but it is a unionist monarchist enforced and ruled country and it will be forced on us Celtic so-called republican fans. Like we all think the same. A central national government is bad enough but a monarchy or in its place a President is a nonsense.
    Further, it’s anthem is unnecessary in a football ground as far as I’m concerned.
    Hearts will no doubt play the anthem of it’s celebrated union, even worse than a central government, monarchy and force it on the tiny Celtic support allowed into Tynecastle.
    So no freedom of choice. What a stupid assertion to make.

    • S Thomas says:

      A Muslim country is a country like Iran were they stone women to death mate. Were they are forced to respect all the terrible laws that they have. Were women are second class citizens, that’s a muslim hardline country. We are not forced to do anything in this country we don’t want to. Left wing politics will not comment on stuff like this though. Left wing politics will just comment on how bad the west are.

      • Effarr says:

        S Thomas.

        I don’t want to pay my £68.00 a week council tax. Do you think I will get away with non-payment if I quote your the council?

        • S Thomas says:

          Unfortunately pal it’s a hit we have to take.. they can’t cover services for nothing mate. I hate paying council tax as well, but I know it’s part of the ball game as they say. I’d rather live here than a lot of other countries that’s for sure. Best water in the world .. and the fish is lovely as well. If you get unwell in this country , you don’t have to fork out either which is great. So all things considered council tax ain’t that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things. Think we like to have a wee moan about things over here.. but a lot of people seem to want to move over here from other countries.

  • Paul Mac says:

    But do Scotland not have an anthem ? Pretty sure before the recent matches played against Ireland they didn´t play GSTK ?? So the S in SFA means Scotland yeah ?
    Surely only 1 or 2 Klubs would be insisting on playing that dirge ? Unfortunately the low calorie version is the one that we play this weekend .. bet the staunchness will be off the charts when they host the sheep !!

    • Scouse bhoy says:

      Hearts will likely play it so then we all know what the headlines will be on monday .

  • Effarr says:

    If Celtic had been playing at home there would have been a different decision, so don’t kid yourself. Any opportunity to slam the support. They took the easy way out knowing that it will be played at TyneCASTLE.

  • SSMPM says:

    @S. Thomas. Oh right so why didn’t you say Iran, instead of lumping all Muslims together. Have you read the Koran? Don’t know why you brought in left wing politics into it either, you do realise anti discrimination policies regarding race and women only came into law in the late 1970s and not by a right wing government and laws against Catholics working in all work environment wasn’t really dismantled that long before. Doesn’t say much for this brilliant civilised country that it took that long given all those right wing governments. The class war was won thanks to left wingers, since then women can share the same bar as men through their own choice.
    I think it may have escaped your notice but we pay for the NHS through NI and Tax now as well so it’s not free and it’s never great under a right wing unionist government. I’ll stop before getting into unionist control of this country and it’s resources.
    Freedom of choice eh, freedom in the press, not on Sunday when they play an anthem that has a verse about killing Scots and as mentioned above what will the headlines be about on Monday, and it won’t titled that they “think we like to have a wee moan”. Deary me. HH

  • Johnny Green says:

    Fk them all, the long and the short and the tall.

Comments are closed.