Operation: Kick The Celtic Fans Continues Even As Sectarian March Revelations Continue To Come.

Image for Operation: Kick The Celtic Fans Continues Even As Sectarian March Revelations Continue To Come.

If you’ve been on the Herald website lately, you’ll have found a series of articles called “Policing The Parties.” This is about us, of course.

The pieces are basically re-hashes of the same old tired nonsense. The clubs have to do more. The council should work with them. The police have a tough job on their hands.

The only original things in that series of reports are John Mason trying to backtrack slightly on the absolute rubbish he talked after Celtic’s title celebrations – which he very obviously took part in before jumping on the bandwagon trashing them – and a story about how “tourists” were so worried by what they witnessed that they don’t intend to come back to Glasgow if there is a game on.

That story was particularly hilarious to me. A single tourist – from Paris – complained about feeling scared trying to get a meal at a Merchant City Japanese restaurant.

We have no way of knowing if this guy even existed or not, because of course this is a second-hand anecdote – but that didn’t stop The Herald devoting an entire article to his “terrifying” story, a story which also includes the suggestion that a single afternoon’s partying by our fans had a “devastating impact” on the area and its businesses.

This is the kind of hyperbolic bullshit that has no place in what needs to be a level headed discussion. There is no chance of that whilst people like Matt Lindsay are chasing sensationalist headlines and writing this kind of ludicrous guff.

Lindsay spoke to the secretary and vice-chair of the Merchant City and Trongate Community Council, and it was from him that we got this classic.

“I was speaking to a French tourist on the evening of May 18 after the Celtic fans’ title party. He came from just outside Paris and he was saying that he had been terrified by what he witnessed. He tried to get dinner at a Japanese restaurant in the Merchant City and ended up running away from crowds of fans. He said to me, ‘When I get home, I’ll tell people to watch out when they go to Glasgow – and to make sure there isn’t a football match on’.”

He ended up “running away” from crowds of fans? What are we suggesting here? A possible lynching? Was he in fear for his life? What were these “crowds of fans” doing that he felt he had to “run away” from them?

So celebrating football fans “terrified” him? He’s never seen crowds of football fans before? I would imagine he’s come across that once or twice in Paris, and one or two other sights that might have been more troubling.

He lives in a country where large scale rioting was going on not that long ago, and I don’t mean the “pissing up the outside of the bus-shelter” style “rioting” that some of the more lurid claims about our title party would have you imagine. I mean full-scale civil disorder type rioting, with police in the full regalia and tear-gas and baton rounds and petrol bombs.

That guy has led a very sheltered life. He probably shouldn’t be travelling to different parts of the world if he’s such a sensitive soul. And anyway … we’re talking here about 20,000 people if the estimates are correct. I’m just curious as to how you accidently stumble into the middle of that. He didn’t spot the signs? Hear the noise?

It’s not as if you can be walking along minding your own business and suddenly “BANG! You’re in the middle of a street party!”

There would have been one or two visible symbols of it long before you actually got there, and as there are dozens of Japanese restaurants in Glasgow I’m moved to wonder why he didn’t just do a casual about turn and go somewhere else.

The way this has been blown out of proportion is staggering.

This was a celebration. This was not urban warfare. This was not a riot.

Did it get rowdy? Yes, it did.

But other major cities manage to deal with this, because they have a political class which actually gets involved. John Mason is still banging on about all the parties getting together … his Labour rival Paul Sweeney actually spoke to the club’s directors about it and they were very clear that the club has tried.

It is the council itself which did not want to engage with our club.

And this comes amidst a staggering revelation about the number of Orange parades we have in Glasgow, one that has not generated nearly as much coverage or any of the controversy. At a recent meeting of a council committee with authority on this issue, it was revealed that over 260 of them took place last year.

“On the processions, of those which were applied for last year, how many were actually permitted?” one of its members asked. “It just seems that the number of orange order marches is disproportionately excessive. Why are so many permitted?”

And you know what she was told? All of them were permitted.

I’m sorry, but I’m not going to accept local businesses and residents in some areas having a megaphone to demonise our fans when those in the vicinity of those parades are expected to simply keep their mouths shut and get on with it.

We live amidst a reeking double standard here, and the more people want to dance around it and ignore it and pretend it isn’t there, the more it stinks.

You know when I’ll take Lindsay and others seriously?

At the end of next month if they have a similar series of articles out about the marching season and why this city still tolerates it.

You want to talk about what’s bad for tourism?

That ghastly, backwards, bigoted spectacle is a stain on Glasgow and on this country.

It’s not just that this elephant is very obviously in the room that bothers some us but that it has been allowed to shit all over the place for too many years to count, and nobody in the chattering classes has ever suggested that maybe the rest of us shouldn’t have to clean up after it.

It’s not just that it’s football fans who are the easy target, it’s that it’s our football fans. That’s what’s gotten some of these people on their high horse, and they are kidding themselves on if they think that a lot of us aren’t fully aware of that fact.

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  • BroxburnBhoy says:

    Scotland must be the only country in the world that is unable to help organize a fan fest party after a team wins something. I’m guessing the city council could organize something they just don’t like the people who are doing the celebrating. I wonder why? Their ability to facilitate multiple openly sectarian marches tells us that where there is a will there is a way. Given the economic boost Celtic generate for Glasgow this should be a no brainer for the council. Avoids impromptu street parties and makes them some money too. Hard to understand why they refuse to partner with Celtic.

  • Effarr says:

    Never mind, just think of the money generated when Glasgow Corporation fines them all £60.00 each for entering low emission zones. Each one must generate more toxic carbon than a 70 year old Ruston Bucyrus diesel would, especially after a feed of haggis and goat`s milk.
    I wouldn`t fancy cleaning any of their cages.

  • Paddybhoy67 says:

    I was in Duke Street on Sunday with my German wife, American daughter-in-law, and son. The “ghastly, backwards, bigoted spectacle” was on parade and their reaction ranged from utter disbelief, to outright hilarity. To quote my daughter-in-law: “They look as if they fell out the ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down.” I tried to explain that it was probably be on its way through the Calton to St Mary’s and that there was nothing funny about it. Trump supporters and fascists were referenced and again the question above was asked “How can that be legal?”

  • Dan Dwan says:

    Ironically enough the Papal States of that time were part of the Grand Alliance and Pope Alexander Vlll was an ally of
    William of Orange! So perhaps we should, all us Celtic minded folk,apply to Glasgow Council to have countless Marches in honour of the great Pope Alexander!! Perhaps an Apple walk…. come to think of it I’ve never seen an Apple B…ard!!

  • Dora says:

    Remember when wangers somehow won the pointless covid lge-I do recall the usual rioting, bottling each other and fighting/injuring police officers….predictable stuff from that klub!!
    Pretty sure that had a long lasting effect on those tourists at the time seeking some noodle doodles..!!

  • John Ormsby says:

    Spot on James

  • Jim says:

    Well said

  • William Miller says:

    I have to say Mathew Lindsay , has embarrassed himself recently with the nonsense he’s been writing regarding anything he can connect to Celtic, The sad thing is he doesn’t have facts to support the negative narrative that he puts his name to,

    • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

      Very true indeed William…

      But will our cowardly yellow streaked men on the board challenge him –

      Not a fuckin snowballs chance in hell of that happening for sure…

      He will be welcomed with open arms at Parkhead whenever he wants – rest assured of that…

      He might though run into a Celtic supporter one day where he won’t be welcomed with open arms…

      Just how amusing would that be for us all !

  • BJ Buchanan says:

    Why indeed are there so many Orange marches? Isn’t it time to cap the number, and edge them away from Glasgow city centre as well?

  • David Campbell says:

    Fantastic article.Spot-on about the hypocrisy! I’m nominally a Protestant but a Hoops fan for 52 years,and I despair at Scotland’s ongoing tolerance of the intolerant,flying completely in the face of our otherwise purportedly inclusive society.I lived in Bridgetòn for almost 20 years,and while there are many good and decent people there perhaps surprisingly to some,we had to put up with weekly Orange parades for about 8 months of the year,with the accompanying rabble pissing in the bushes,littering the streets with beer cans and fighting among themselves – oh and belting out their hate-filled anthems with the original lyrics – all under the noses of the accommodating police,who,it appeared,did all but sing along! Double standards? You bet!

  • Andrew Smith says:

    Celtic fans gathered in their thousands at Glasgow Green before the Scottish Cup Final, would it not be a good idea for an organised party in the green to celebrate their title win, that way their not affecting any businesses or blocking roads in the merchant city and its all contained in the park, they could have music stages like a festival with food and drink vendors.

  • Robert ralton says:

    That is such a correct and pinpoint assessment of something absolutely obnoxious in our society, it has prevailed for decades and swept under many a carpet. Nobody wants to remedy this scourge

  • Richard M says:

    They allow 260 Orange marches every year, but one St Patrick’s day parade cannot be considered due to safety concerns (as that it would be targeted and attacked by aforementioned knuckledraggers), where globally it is celebrated by the entire cities with strong ties, but not Glasgow with probably the strongest connection to Ireland in the world !

    • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

      Welcome to Bonnie (‘SIC’) Scotland then Richard…

      It could be and should be….. BUT !

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