Hoops

angelaheadshotAs Scotland enters its historic year what we need is journalists, good journalists. This week David Limond may go to jail for attacking a brave young female journalist just for doing her job. Sheriff Scott Pattison has said: “I am strongly considering a custodial sentence.”

You probably won’t have heard about the case because none of the main Scottish papers have covered it despite it featuring online bullying, sectarianism, and celebrity (Limond is the brother of comedian Brian Limond, the man behind the BBC’s ‘Limmy’s Show’) – so it’s a veritable tick-box of media obsessions.

How come?

Angela Haggerty works for The Drum magazine, writes occasionally for Newsnet Scotland and was editor for Phil Mac Giolla Bhain’s book Downfall: How Rangers FC Self Destructed (2012).

For this crime she became a hate figure for an element of Rangers fans and loyalists, one including David Limond who was found guilty of a religiously aggravated breach of the peace after targeting a journalist as “Taig of the day” on his online podcast. He told his listeners to “hit her with everything you’ve got” and said “she’s got to get bang bang bang”.

Angela has said: “I’m pleased with the verdict and relieved that things have been concluded. There were many attempts throughout the Rangers financial crisis to silence journalists on the story, and this was just one of those forms of intimidation. While social and online broadcasting technology has been a great development in new media, those tools can be very easily abused and the effect it has on people’s lives shouldn’t be underestimated.”

So why haven’t you heard about it?

Limond’s conviction has only been reported in any detail by The Ayr Advertiser and as a paragraph at the end of a separate story in The Herald. Roy Greenslade thinks it’s about the ‘Scottish media averting its gaze’.

Alex Thomson of Channel 4 News challenges the Scottish media to report this groundbreaking prosecution this Friday, saying:

The victim here is not black, she’s of Irish descent. But racism is racism in fact, in reality, in law – however blind important sections of Glasgow remain to this reality. So the racial element makes it obviously a landmark, groundbreaking prosecution.

So groundbreaking in fact that it was all but ignored by the Glasgow-dominated Scottish media. You really do have to wonder why? They’ll have another chance this week when Limond is sentenced in Ayr. Will they take it?

Huddle Round

So far so what? ‘Rangers fan abuses Celtic-blogger’. Who cares? But this story has a new twist and goes to the heart of a Scottish misogyny  – in this case combining macho football culture with online aggression.

Now Haggerty, who attracted hostility after writing a blog about a female physiotherapist getting abused by Celtic fans at the Elfsborg game (‘Get your wits out for the ghirls’) has been getting threatened by Celtic Fans on the Huddleboard. Her crime? Being critical of Celtic fans drunken behavior at a series of away games.

As Alex Thomson writes: “Here so-called Celtic “supporters” openly threaten precisely the same journalist as Limond did. They threaten her with blatant physical and sexual assault for doing her job. It’s disgusting and laughably stupid – and yes guys – deleting any of it now is far far too late.”

What’s this got to do with anything? What’s this got to do with Scottish independence?

The same thing that Rangers corruption and tax-evasion has. It’s about what sort of Scotland we want to live in and are trying to create. In a democracy we need freedom of speech and freedom from intimidation.

As we struggle with new online fora and find ways to communicate we need to get beyond this.

Angela’s case is one about truth, honesty and change. How do we stand up to cultures of violence, misogyny and bigotry? I suppose by facing up to them. It’s about taking responsibility for our actions. That’s a start.

Comments (61)

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  1. Gordon says:

    These bigots will kill the pathetic game as played in Scotland. Football reporting, classified as ‘sport’ in the news is not about the sport, but about money, transfers and the ‘transfer window’, managers and boardrooms, receivership, and alleged corruption. Where’s the ‘sport’ in all this?
    “The Scottish media averting its gaze” in the case of Angela Haggerty is simply what the Scottish media do. In this case it is to slow the drift away from the game in order to keep selling the papers. On other occasions, it’s to protect its political stance.

    1. Jim McNeill says:

      Look, it’s easy. Athletics, swimming and tennis have no problem broadcasting women’s events. Somehow football and rugby do. So they’re obviously played and watched by a gang of moronic gits who are really just using “sport” to find somewhere to hide from women and make stupid, hateful comments.
      So if you want to support sport, support athletics, swimming or tennis, unless you want to advertise yourself as a misogynist tosser, in which case support football or rugby.

  2. Jim says:

    Terrible thing and best wishes Angela.

    I remember as an apprentice one of my fellow apprentices being chased around by a tradesman for wearing a “Holy Bead”, the Sacred Heart I think. I also remember another tradesman telling me that I had a Catholic face. Three of us were the first three catholic apprentices in the company after the death of one bigoted business partner in the company.

    I remember a lot of things including my dad telling me that Celtic supporters once demonstrated outside the SFA offices in order to get a Celtic player in the Scotland national team and, from his father, in Ireland, a young woman being made to kneel on the ground in her own home by British soldiers and having rosary beads put down her throat until she was physically sick.

    Before that of course “democracy” in Ireland meant that every protestant over the age of 21 had a vote and only the “householder” of a catholic house-hold had the same right.

    A disgusting recent history as it comes anywhere in Europe, with Catholics and those that marry Catholics being disbarred from aceding to the throne of the UK and no Catholic PM allowed until he or she retire et al and the British government encouraging it.

    I also remember hearing that James Connolly, the Irish Rebel, who was tied to a chair and shot by the British government was a Scottish born protestant.

    However, as has been pointed out. Prejudice, perhaps more understandably, maybe not, has come from what I would call my side as well.

    Divide and conquer really.It’s a well-worn path all over the world.

    I am not just Catholic, I am Roman Catholic. I am not just Roman Catholic, I am a Scottish Roman Catholic , and I am not just a Scottish Roman Catholic, I am a Scottish Roman Catholic aethiest.

    It’s in my blood and I will die so. Sectarianism is just daft.

    It has worried me that British loyalists-nationalists have migrated to Ayrshire from Northern Ireland in recent years and are poisioning weans’ minds.

    However, things are a lot better now than they have ever been, bad in areas though they might be.

    Its right that these things should be exposed in the Scottish media, of course. A sectarian series of attacks, verbal or otherwise, on an individual is totally unacceptable. Maybe the Scottish media and press will reach maturity and cover the issue in a responsible fashion, although I wouldn’t hold my breathe.

    Again, best wishes Angela.

    1. Sorry simply not true that every protestant over 21 had a vote while only the householder of a catholic house had that right.
      In local government elections only a householder and their spouse had the vote. There was also a business vote. Didn’t matter what your religion was. It was the situation in the rest of the UK before 1948. The Unionists couldn’t get up to date.
      Where the discrimination lay was that the size of the constituencies depended on the rateable value of the property in them so a row of council houses would be worth less than a big detached villa. As people wanted to be near their Churches and Schools it was therefore possible to construct constituencies which were homogeneous in religion ( today 90% of the population of Northern Ireland live in communities where 90% are the same religion). A bit of moving of the boundaries and bingo permanent control. You build houses if you did at all in “your” area, and the local councillor got to name who got the Council houses.
      I think that if you check that Connolly was a Roman Catholic – though born in Scotland.
      It is unfortunate that the sectarianism (and anti Irish racism) is actually Scottish home reared, and is independent of religion. I have been abused for being Irish even on this site.
      I remember being asked what I hoped would happen during an old firm game before the fall. I said that I hoped that the ground would open, the stands would collapse and that would be the end to the nonsense. I still wish that would happen there is no real difference between them and they do great damage to Scotland.

  3. I’ve been the target of bigots and racists,aye it can happen to white guys as well.I remember going for an interview,be asked to go by employment agency,only to be told jobs gone,OK.I had registered with a few agencies and got the same place offered again,so I thought I’d use a different name,and low and behold the manager said “can you start right away” aye before I even went there “we had a fenian looking for the job earlier on” so I said Ah “I don’t do bigots nor work for or with them” I explained to the girl in the agency what and why I had done it,and her reply was that they would not deal with that place again.I don’t know if they did,but it close abut 6 months later,oh aye I did spread the word about what was said to me,and some of my relatives did dine there but no longer and their friends stopped also.That is the price of racism or bigotry you lose friends before you even start.

  4. I deeply regret anyone intimidating and committing violence against anyone. I’m especially ashamed that one who does these things should call himself a Protestant. As a Minister, not yet serving in Scotland, I have given thought to what the churches can do to end this. I think that Ministers and Priests should work togetherwith families, children in schools and supporters in Celtic pubs and Rangers pubs to bring Catholis ( Roman) and Protestant (catholic) together to learn to appreciate each other as human beings and to realise that these are not two different religions, branches of Christianity which, a great extent, share the same faith and beliefs. Ministers & Priests preach God’s love for all people, but these Celtic Catholics & Rangers Protestants are almost never in kirk or at Mass. So we need to be working together outside our walls to motivate people with love, which is expressed in mutual appreciation, mutual forebearance, and mutual service to the other.

  5. Tony Kenny says:

    This is outrageous!

    I take it that you are able to provide evidence of:

    ” They threaten her with blatant physical and sexual assault for doing her job.”

    None of the parties involved have been able to. Indeed they avoid it, because it is utter bollocks. However let’s not let the facts get in the way of this.

    Angela herself now seems to spend her time trolling people in order to legitimise the original charge. There are a few wierd people behind the original article that has made Thomson a laughing stock. They are now being ostracised from the wider Celtic support, in a way it is good that they have exposed their poison so openly.

    Celtic apparently are the violent Millwall. Well if you read the Scottish media, I suppose we are. Again let’s not bother anyone with facts in the demonisation.

    Why this once respecable independence platform wishes to insult and vicariously malign my self, my family and the wider Celtic community is beyond me. You have chosen to do this freely.

    Given your attitude the last time we crossed swords demanding solidarity from Irish republicans towards Scottish nationalists showing their Hibernophobia. This piece does not surprise me.

    Not sure what is going on with civic Scotland, but I for one am tiring of it.

    1. I posted the evidence on Twitter on Friday, two days before Alex Thomson’s blog, when it was brought to my attention by a Celtic fan. The screengrabs are all over Twitter, the evidence has been doing the rounds for days. Your next point suggests I seek to be abused. You’ve just validated this article. Well done.

      Thank you to other posters for much appreciated support.

      1. Tony Kenny says:

        I understand there is some kind of validation issues with you Angela, but can you stop abusing my fellow fans in order to fulfill your needs.

        You were not threatened with sexual assault.

        A few neds called you a ‘bint’ and a ‘cow’ Someone said you ‘deserved a boot in the fanny’ This is glesga get over your drama Queen stuff for goodness sake.

        As Charlie mulgrew tweeted: “Only in Glasgow can a man shout “alright charlie ya big c**t” and there’s no offence taken!”

        Well a certain person has enlisted a pal or two with columns to give herself and them a showing up.

        It is sad really.

    2. bellacaledonia says:

      I didn’t say anything about Millwall. Not sure how supporting someone who has been threatened maligns your family?

      1. Tony Kenny says:

        .

        I’ll assume you are unable to put up evidence of “They threaten her with blatant physical and sexual assault for doing her job”. Also since you have made no attempt to address it.

        So you will take the article down then?

        My family are Celtic fans, this maligns us all. Shameful that you are persisting with the pathetic allegation as veritas.

      2. eddie rice says:

        I’m not supporting Tony Kenny in any way though I think he makes a valid point about the article above and the 1 you quote Mike. When commenting on what Limond said you used direct quotes, which gives the reader a clear understanding about the type of threat and the context. However when quoting from Thomson’s blog you quote Thomson and not the threats on the Huddleboard, so the reader is left to just take your and Thomson’s word that threats of violence and the more sinister sexual violence actually happened. That’s just poor journalism.

        Thomson’s blog also contained sensationalist comments directed at the wider Celtic support which were frankly laughable and not up to the standards which are associated with someone of his standing in journalism. When taken together is it any wonder Tony is sceptical of the article?

        As I said above it’s not up to the reader to have to trawl the internet for the evidence to back up a story, that’s the job of the writer, in that respect you and Mr Thomson have failed badly Mike.

  6. Sean says:

    There is no room for any kind of abuse to anyone who disagrees with someone’s point if view, by all means disagree and debate the issue but do t resort to threats and abuse.
    During the early days of the fanzines I was myself on the end of abuse in print and unfortunately physically assaulted, I was outspoken. My name and address was put out by the editor of one of these fanzines, I know how Angela feels, I do not always agree with what she has to say but I defend her right to say it.

  7. eddie rice says:

    I’m not supporting Tony Kenny in any way though I think he makes a valid point about the article above and the 1 from Thomo which you quote Mike. When commenting on what Limond said you used direct quotes, which gives the reader a clear understanding about the type of threat and the context. However when quoting from Thomson blog you quote Thomson and not the threats on the Huddleboard, so the reader is left to just take your and Thomson’s word that threats of violence and the more sinister sexual violence actually happened.

    Thomson’s blog also makes wild accusations against the wider Celtic support, none of which were backed up by any facts, this would lead any normal person to actually doubt the whole article.
    It isn’t the job of the reader to trawl the internet to find evidence to support allegations contained within a blog, that is the job of the writer.

    1. bellacaledonia says:

      Strange. Do you doubt the threats were made? If so, you’d have to presume that the individual, the Channel 4 reporter or myself would have some reason to fabricate the story.

      Do you have reason to think that?

      1. eddie rice says:

        Let’s twist it to suit eh. So this is acceptable journalism? This should be the norm? I’ve seen the comments, that’s isn’t what I questioned. Do you think we should just trust someone who works for C4? The same company that commissioned Benifit street.

      2. The Huddleboard themselves tweeted that there had been bannings as a result. The extent to which denial is being claimed by some people in the Celtic support who most certainly know better shows a level of double standards that has been surprising to me.

        However, as this blog rightly points out, the issue is about how the media and wider society tackle these issues.

        Tony Kelly’s view is telling: his belief is that threats of violence and sexual assault are Glasgow’s way of telling me to “get over my drama queen stuff”.

        I think we can all agree that this is not the society we would aspire to in an independent Scotland.

      3. Tony Kenny says:

        “Tony Kelly’s view is telling: his belief is that threats of violence and sexual assault are Glasgow’s way of telling me to “get over my drama queen stuff””

        I wonder if the misspelling of my name was deliberate.

        Don’t worry Angela I have no intention of suing.

        You were not threatened with sexual assault.

        You are a liar!

        I of course never said what you attributed to me, you either have poor comprehension, which could be true or you are a liar. The twisting and turning of both you and Bella show exactly what you are upto. Shocking attention seeking mixed with disgraceful churnalism.

        1. bellacaledonia says:

          This repeated slur of ‘attention seeking’ is disgraceful. Either contribute in a positive way or be banned. There is nothing useful in what you are saying. Why dont you think about where your energy should be directed? Is it really against a republican, pro RIC, pro Indy website and against a fellow Celtic fan who’s been abused by Rangers fans?

  8. eddie rice says:

    Angela, my point over the Tomo blog and this one is that they aren’t good examples of journalism and as a result the message re misogyny within the Celtic support isn’t discussed or addressed as it should be.

    1. bellacaledonia says:

      I’ll be sure to let Alex Thomson know he’s a dud. He’ll have been useless for more than 25 years covering over 20 wars; I’m surprised Channel 4 use him at all. On your recommendation I’ll have his BAFTA and EMMY awards rescinded; and get the Royal Television Society to take back his TV Journalist of the Year (incidentally for his reporting on Bloody Sunday).

      1. Not a regular reader of this thread, but if that is the quality of the reply, the 5 year old ‘I’m going to clipe oan you’ reply, then I don’t think I’ll bother being back.

      2. eddie rice says:

        You see this is the type of response that just makes me laugh, it really does. You have startingly failed to address any of the points raised and then go on a rant about his previous reputation. If Mr Thomson were to continue to produce these tardy blogs his reputation would be in tatters.

        The fact that you use the word “dud” when describing Mr Thomson, which until this point, no one else has used, is perhaps a freudian slip on your part.

        No doubt you really do know about good journalistic practices but because of your friendship with Phil (nothing wrong with that btw, we all support our friends) and wanting to be seen to be supporting his friend you were blinded to the glaring inaccuracies and bad journalistic methods used in constructing Mr Thomson’s blog. The very fact that we, as the readers, can’t follow simple journalistic methods such as who, when, where, what and how in reading the article leaves the reader confused and in the case of many Celtic fans angry that Mr Thomson has lied to try and make a somewhat confusing and irrelevant point (Millwall).
        It would also appear that the basic principles of good journalism such as truthfulness, accuracy, objectivity, impartiality, fairness and public accountability are sadly lacking in Mr Thomson’s piece. So while I retain my admiration for Mr Thomson’s previous work he has sadly failed miserably here.

  9. Well here’s your chance – address the misogyny issue.

    1. Davy says:

      Yes , misogyny is a serious issue that exists all through society , particularly in football – which does need addressing , along with racism and homophobia – and not least among some macho type supporters of Independence – but it’s not helpful for Alex Thomson to smear the whole Celtic support for the online comments of a couple narrow-minded bigots with sweeping statements like this –

      “Celtic of today is rightly gaining a reputation for the most consistently violent fans in the UK who attack stadiums as if we’re living in 1974.
      They are Scotland’s modern Millwall: an underclass of extreme politics and mindless violence – the same old toxic brew.”
      – See more at: http://blogs.channel4.com/alex-thomsons-view/scotlands-modern-millwall-celtics-toxic-public-image/6921#sthash.oS6tBq4Z.dpuf

  10. eddie rice says:

    I’m a commenter as opposed to a blogger, maybe if Mike and Tomo rewrote their articles we could then have a decent debate about the issue.

  11. Clydebuilt says:

    In Scotland

    Sectarianiasm = Divide & Conquer

    It’s Scots who are being divided.

    In whose interest is that?

  12. Fay Kennedy says:

    So grateful I grew up with a non practising Catholic mother and atheist father in Glasgow. My first experience of sectarianism was in the school yard and I have never forgotten it when all of six years old I saw a gang of boys armed with sticks and stones marching down the road looking for the enemy. I couldn’t run home fast enough. This awful malaise has to be addressed and it has to come from those who have the cachet to do something about it. There will be no progress in Scotland until that happens.

  13. Michael al-saedi says:

    Phil for someone who is a critic of lazy journalism I find it unacceptable that you can claim that Angela was threatened. Someone wishing pain on someone is not a threat. Distasteful yes but threatening not a chance. Very disappointed that you have chosen to perpetuate that lie.

  14. barakabe says:

    None of this is surprising. The extremists on either side are exactly the same as each other, only differentiated by colours. These fanatical types have nothing in life except football & football becomes a channel for all manner of emotional-driven prejudice, & the release of primitive forces (not normally widely accepted in more civilised society). All fanatics of every persuasion always share a common trait: they tolerate no criticism of their behaviour (no matter howw out of the norm it is); even when someone describes such behaviour with objective articulation they will describe such evaluation as ‘criticism’- criticism of the fanatic is unnacceptable as it is deemed to censure their freedom, yet the fanatic is free to censure all opposition with excessive criticism. Double standards, rationalization, confirmation bias, cognitive dissonance, group bias thinking, & plain old hypocrisy are all basic components of this malady- fanaticism is a one way street: nothing they do is ever wrong & everything you do or say is nearly always wrong.
    Another powerful manifestation of fanaticism & even cult thinking is it’s full proof resistance to reliable ‘new’ information. It remains unmodified, even against experience that contradicts its assumptions. This is what makes it dangerous. If you already possess ‘certainty’ then why would you change? One of the big problems with the milder forms of fanaticism associated with football is that it has more socially sanctioned psychological mechanisms to prop itself up, than more toxic & overtly violent manifestations of fanaticism. The mutual enthusiasm experienced in the fan group combined with the reinforcement dynamic of the event itself (football match) perpetuates & even normalizes fanaticism, & all the concomitant toxic effects associated with the phenomenon (& described above).

    1. This ‘fanatic’ definition is cometely abstract and tries to paint a picture of the sensible middle ground so beloved of mainstream politicians. That’s the problem with the ‘sectarian’ debate too. There are fundamental differences between the Celtic and Rangers traditions, the biggest of which is that one has always been in support of the British state and the other has not. But those on here making excuses for attacks on Angela Haggerty really need to recognise they are doing their cause no good whatsoever with their defence of shameful mysogyny.

      1. barakabe says:

        There is a ‘sensible’ middle ground that most decent people believe is the social norm, & there are always a minority who transgress those commonly agreed set of behaviours- whether mainstream politicians agree or disagree with those norms is irrelevant.Football for most people is a safe, acceptable & effecient outlet for many primitive forces that are often suppressed in most other human activities; it sanitizes the less than civilized aspects of human nature.
        Unfortunately there are a minority of people who take that outlet to extreme levels the consequences of which are most often socially unacceptable- these are most often the people who have no alternative emotional outlets or who’ve failed to reach a the necessary social balance; this contraction of the individuals emotional life exclusively to a single social outlet makes them socially unbalanced & behave fanatically. There’s nothing controversial in that assertion. It’s easily observed most matchday’s. There are certain ideologically loaded subcultures that do encourage a fanaticism or an exlusive identification with either/or belief systems; many of these ideologies have become increasingly unacceptable to the wider social norms of decent civilized people- those include sympathies with Irish Republicanism or Orangeism. In my experience Rangers have a considerably greater problem with their specific minority of ‘fanatics’ (as a club they have institutionally encouraged identification with the Orange Order)- but Celtic as a club now have an opportunity to clarify their position so that their significantly smaller minority of fanatics are exposed by their own transgressive behaviour.

      2. Tocasaid says:

        Indeed, one of them, when I think of Brian Wilson and John Reid, has been the British state.

  15. Peter McKeown says:

    I agree totally that the behaviour of a section of the Celtic support towards the Elfsborg physios was mysogynistic in its nature. I took a bit of stick within both my social circle and those who I engage with online for saying so at the time. I also agree that bigotry, threats of violence and mysogynistic attitudes have no place in any society and want to see an Independent Scotland that fosters condemnation of such attitudes. I also agree that people should be able to air an opinion freely without fear of intimidation, gender-based or otherwise.

    I would aso argue however, that I should be able to disagree with the arguments put forward on their own lack of merit.

    I have been attending Celtic matches since 1987. In that time I have seen incidences of violence that could be counted on one hand. The number of these incidents that I would describe as ‘significant violence’, I could count on no hands. It is therefore disingenuous of Alex Thomson to say that Celtic are ‘rightly gaining a reputation of being the mosy consistently violent fans in Britain’, that we are somehow akin to the Far-Right hooligan element that attached themselves to Millwall Football Club, or indeed that we as a support have a ‘cancer’ in our midst

    An anonymous post on a messageboard suggesting that a women ‘deserves a kick in the fanny’ is no more a threat of sexual assault as someone saying ‘he’s needing his baws toed’, either. To paint it as such insults those who have been victims of sexual assault.

    Misogyny is wrong and to be condemned. So too violence, threatened or otherwise, bigotry and any other form of discrimination.

    Using my membership of the Celtic support to paint me as somehow ‘part of the problem’ is wrong too and should be condemned with similar vigour.

    1. Tony Kenny says:

      Exactly my reasoning.

      There is some shameful juxtapositioning going on.

      The PLC bloggers are defending a mass slur on all of us.

      For what?

      My guess is that it is because we are not doing as we are told and behaving like nice consumers, and ultimately it has to be said. Certain folk wish to have a hegemonic hold on our views.

      Nae chance!

      1. bellacaledonia says:

        I think you’re deranged Kenny. Why are we acting against you? Why does Bella have a problem with people not behaving like ‘nice consumers’? PLC bloggers?

      2. tccokey3 says:

        Give it a rest,stop your greetin,dry up pal,……..give people a chance to disagree my hied,s nippin with all this he said/she said nonsense from you Kenny.I have to say no one tells me what to do,think,or say….within reason…let the bee oot yir bonnet ma freen.Life is to short njoy yirsel……….Yours in Celtic TC.

  16. Jim says:

    Jeez. Some of the comments on here are unbelievable.

    I dont know exactly what’s going on with this. The article appears to me to be opposed to bigots on both sides.

    “A few neds called you a ‘bint’ and a ‘cow’ Someone said you ‘deserved a boot in the fanny’ This is glesga get over your drama Queen stuff for goodness sake.”

    Shocking comment.

    I am a Celtic supporter. My large family are all Celtic supporters,.You do not speak for us when you seem to suggest that such language towards a woman is in any way acceptable.

    It isn’t.

    1. Tony Kenny says:

      I never said it was acceptable Jim.

      I said it wisnae a threat of sexual assault as is claimed to defame us all.

      I note you have chosen to ignore my comparison with a Charlie Mulgrew tweet, should he contact the law for being called a big c**t?

      If you are fae Glesga then you know what I am saying is in context, would I say it? Naw, but that is not the issue.

      1. wanvote says:

        Well I’m fae Glesga and I know what you are saying in context or out is utter shite! As self-appointed spokesperson for 500k people yur sacked!

      2. An Duine Gruamach says:

        You’re the one ignoring context, Tony. You can’t just take the words and pretend that the way in which they are delivered, and by whom isn’t important. Say, for instance, that Mulgrew is in a pub with some friends, another friend comes to join them, and greets Mulgrew with a cry of “Alright ya big c***!”. Is this really, *really* the same as a) the same word being used of a woman b) by someone she doesn’t know, c) in the context of angry denunciations of her work because she criticised moronic misogynistic behaviour?

        1. bellacaledonia says:

          Thank you

  17. Davy says:

    Re-posting this from Rangers fan on Alex Thomson’s Blog –

    “shiny new Glasgow”
    “Glasgow’s bizarre blindness to racism, bigotry and all manner of criminal activity”
    “Nobody around the West Coast seemed to think David Limond’s foul online racist bigotry and intimidation of a woman was odd, or wrong, or unusual. Still less, racist. Still less, racist.”
    “Celtic’s underclass”
    “Glasgow culture’s still stuck in early twentieth century tolerance of this filth”
    “They are Scotland’s modern Millwall”

    Alex Thomson is a journalist I follow with interest and without prejudice. His reporting of many issues, foreign and domestic is typically enlightened, informative and important.
    It is important that he highlight inhumanity, wrongdoing, racism, sectarianism and criminality that go unpunished. However, this latest blog which attacks Glasgow, Glasgow Culture, and Celtic contains exaggeration at best, and at its worst – indeed at its core – is a prejudiced and bigoted view of Glasgow and its football fans.

    Now, don’t get me wrong. Of course there are mindless idiots who are guilty of the crimes he refers to. They exist on ‘both sides’ of city and indeed beyond this city. There are far too many of them. But, and thankfully, they are in a minority. Sizeable, but a minority nonetheless.
    Glasgow has its sins, as any city has. But the power of the words you have chosen, and they are clearly carefully chosen, imply your view is of the city as a whole, and that its dominant culture is that which you describe. Minorities idiots apart, it is NOT a dominant culture I recognise and thankfully so.

    In fact, Glasgow has a proud tradition of resisting National Front, BNP or EDL thuggery; often when these loony racist groups have tried to organise in this city, ordinary folk have gathered to obstruct their meetings, oppose their rhetoric and when necessary drive them away by force. I have seen this with my own eyes and been part of it. I have stood shoulder to shoulder with other likeminded Glaswegians who abhor their racism and prejudice, and their attempts to grow their poisonous roots in this (and other Scottish cities). Strange to you perhaps, but I have done this in solidarity with those who in your view I must ‘hate’ or be sectarian towards. I speak of course of those from the ‘other side’ of the city as you may refer to them as. And of course let us not forget that these groups have always tried to pitch these sides against each other. In this they have failed – with the exception of a few morons who will inevitably join their cause.

    The real irony of course is that south of the border these very same racist groups are far more popular, enjoy greater membership, and sadly have enjoyed far greater electoral success. Does that mean that English people are more racist than the Scots? Or Southern England is more racist than the Midlands or the North? By your analysis and logic it probably does evidence a positive answer to those questions. However, I would simply say: let us not be silly, let us not tarnish an entire region or country (or city as you do) because of a minority of mindless idiots who spout poison.

    So let us be clear. The idea that “Nobody around the West Coast seemed to think David Limond’s foul online racist bigotry and intimidation of a woman was odd, or wrong, or unusual. Still less, racist,” is utter nonsense. The idea that Celtic as a club or its fans behaviour can be reasonably compared to Millwall is pure fantasy. And the idea that Glasgow as a city has a culture rooted in “early twentieth century tolerance of this filth”, I will put down to imaginative writing.

    For the record, I am not a Celtic fan. Indeed I am in fact a Rangers fan. I write this not because of any issue I have with your previous blogs about the club; I have NO axe to grind and have already stated that I have admired your writing. I write this because of the distorted reality that you present. Yes, this city has issues to address; but this is mindless minority on both sides of the divide. This latest blog is exactly the type of prejudiced and exaggerated journalism we expect from the likes of Rupert Murdoch’s journalists. Not from you Alex.
    http://blogs.channel4.com/alex-thomsons-view/scotlands-modern-millwall-celtics-toxic-public-image/6921

  18. setondene says:

    God, what a cesspit Glasgow is. Glad I’ve never lived there. I’d hope that Glasgow’s economy could be substantially improved after independence. Maybe that would reduce the ignorance and racism. And, by the way, my family are weegies (blue variety) and sadly, I’ve heard the same racist crap from them. They don’t even seem to be aware of what they’re saying…

  19. gortch2013 says:

    Well. Let’s be honest and clear on one or two things. Football in Scotland is just rubbish for so many reasons. It’s divisive, distractive, repetitive, and boring. I say all that as a Scottish person who once went went through the delusional process of pretending it mattered on some level

    These Limond brothers need to have a chat or something because the comedian guy actually seems quite smart.

    I’m also a bit confused about a few things. Like those fans that shout abuse at games, how do we know they aren’t just parodying morons who shout abuse at games? I have this problem with comedians nowadays. They seem to get away with saying totally unacceptable things because we assume they are parodying people that say such things — it’s like a tacit agreement, if I say anything outrageous you can’t complain because it’s parody…

  20. great balanced read just noticed it there angela is a member of the media both msm and alternative and has had massive input she should be encouraged to shoot from the hip when you look at our alternative media its only her goodself brenda sfm maggie paul mc c site god rest his soul so for us to give her back chat is wrong its concrutive critisim from her and should be addressed as such at the end of the day shes a very well liked young lady being put under a lot of stress while striving to do her job and at the same time another thing that amazes me is she is the only lady involved in the sevco oldco story think about it all the people are men from the spivs to groups phil made her a house hold name via the book and most likely in future will have a great career in media and literture so as for alex hes not right theses days

  21. Iwonder if the Scottish Government should legislate the disbanding of both Rangers & Celtic? It has been said, when I’ve raised this question in conversation, that the teams are not the problem, but the fans are. However without the teams and clubs here would be no fans. That excuse for hatred & violece we gone. Of course the mutual biggotry has deeper roots which would continue to bear their rotten growths on other occasions for violence, verbal and physical.

    There needs to be ongoing effort to tackle this in schools, pubs, and with families. Since Celtic supporters claim to be Catholic (Roman) and Rangers supporters claim to be Protestant (catholic), even though most never attend Mass or Worship, the churches must be involved in offering a better way of regarding each other.

    1. Please excuse the typos and misspelling of bigotry. I had corrected the misspelled word before I posted, but my tablet did not pick up the correction.

  22. Davy says:

    barakabe wrote :

    “There is a ‘sensible’ middle ground that most decent people believe is the social norm,”

    Would that be the ‘sensible’ middle ground that ‘most decent people’ believed was the social norm until relatively recently that –
    – women , homosexuals , Africans , Irish etc etc were inferior…. ?
    Who also believe/d that men & women are equally responsible for sexism
    – that black & white are equally responsible for racism
    – that gay & straight are equally responsible for homophobia
    – that Republican & Loyalist are equally responsible for conflict in Ireland ?

    1. barakabe says:

      I don’t really understand what your driving at, but what I will say is that social norms are always in a state of flux to some extent; but in a civilized society the majority agree we subscribe to some basic level of decency in order to have any bearable social existence at all. There are a minority of extremists who refuse to tolerate other peoples opinions/beliefs & this is no way compatible with a modern liberal democratic way of life. If we cannot agree that we must have some basic level of decency & tolerance then how can we employ some form of mutual dialogue to reach a state of common understanding? If we cannot even do the basics then we might as well pack it in.

      1. Davy says:

        The points I was making was that –
        “social norms” can be reactionary and prejudiced
        particularly when you wrote –

        “many of these ideologies have become increasingly unacceptable to the wider social norms of decent civilized people- those include sympathies with Irish Republicanism or Orangeism ”

        – which is dismissive and intolerant of Irish Republicanism and equates it with Orangeism – which to be honest is offensive

      2. barakabe says:

        Davy, do you really believe there’s much difference between the brand of ‘Republicanism’ expounded by a few delinquent neds in the Celtic support & the toxic triumphalism of those who indulge inOrange bampottery? Both are equally obnoxious & equally unwelcome in a modern progressive Scotland- both are the manifestation of the same ned mentality, only superficially differentiated by their respective colours of allegiance- it’s interesting that many of the fanatics on either side are spiritually united by a commitment to the no campaign: Bigots in Arms. Many of these unbalanced types turn on you very quickly when you don’t agree with their brand of ‘truth’; they even very quickly turn on each other when anyone is audacious enough to question the veracity of their truth- many of those who lionized Thomson when he was ‘attacking’ Rangers are now calling for his head when he directs his torch onto Celtic.

  23. wanvote says:

    Well done Angela and those who supported you including Mike!
    6 months jail for Limond. A clear message to the bigots and online bullies – you won’t get away with it.

  24. Tocasaid says:

    Oh… Tony Kenny… how to did a hole for yourself.

    More evidence that evolution has bypassed some and the kind of defence given by those who still involve themselves with the KKK and other eejits.

  25. George says:

    Just for the record journalism (a career path chosen by both Alex and Angela) is frequently voted the most untrustworthy profession. And there’s politics and banking included in these lists. Without ranking either Alex or Angela in their industry I’d suggest that those that blindly follow their journalistic musing really need to step back and consider whether their articles are based on the need for readers or the need for truth. However much each journalist believes they tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing etc I’m pretty sure we all know that is in fact, far from the truth. Or perhaps Angela and Alex can prove in their cases this is not so.

  26. Davy says:

    Barakabe , I read your original comment as a general reference to Irish Republicanism –

    “many of these ideologies have become increasingly unacceptable to the wider social norms of decent civilized people- those include sympathies with Irish Republicanism or Orangeism ”

    – which is a not uncommon attitude in Scotland whenever the subject of Ireland or “sectarianism” comes up –
    ie. “both sides as bad as each other”

    I agree there are can be some ignorant bigots amongst Celtic and/or Irish Republican supporters in Scotland , but then that shouldn’t be used to tar ALL Irish Republican and/or Celtic supporters with same brush – which is what many feel Alex Thomson did on his blog , all be it on a different topic

  27. Here´s my conclusion on this and other questions about Celtic and Rangers, a vexed question which will probably take 100 years of independence to properly solve:

    1) Bella, as a loyal reader, I can´t see what´s to be gained from these stories at least until the referendum. That´s not a criticism of the story, it´s a worthy story, but it gars me greet that the so often the pages with most comments are to do with the Ugly Sisters.

    2) Angela, my sympathies, but do the wise thing and blank Scottish football, it´s really not interesting any more. It´s a tedious, moronic competition between Celtic and Rangers fans to decide who was last / second last in the queue when the braincells were being handed out. Write about independence and forget the Old Firm, they are like a family heirloom nobody will take off your hands for love or money.

    3) Tony Kenny, think about you mother, sister and other women that are dear to you when justifying such obnoxious and abusive language to a woman, It´s a disgrace!!!

    The rest of us cannot stand either Celtic or Rangers fans, a plague on both your houses. You are part of the baggage of the British State, you are the PAST, and stop posting on Bella as if the rest of us have to agree with you for you to vote YES.

    Vote what the FF what you want, man, and stop greetin and girnin about how we´re all against you.

    There are lots of us with Irish forbears who don´t make a lamentable spectacle out of that fact, and you and so many Celtic fans are a living embarrassment to the Republican tradition, in Ireland and elsewhere….

  28. Big Pete Crenshaw says:

    “What’s this got to do with anything? What’s this got to do with Scottish independence?

    The same thing that Rangers corruption and tax-evasion has.”

    This vessel is empty.

    It’s making so much noise it probably can’t hear itself.

    Trust me, that’s a good thing.

    No one else is listening.

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