Debate all our main site articles here.

TOPIC: The Strange Rise of Anti-Sectarianism

The Strange Rise of Anti-Sectarianism 9 years 8 months ago #888

  • Stuart Waiton
  • Stuart Waiton's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Fresh Boarder
  • Posts: 2
  • Thank you received: 5
The final chapter of the book looks at what I have describes as the 'new sectarians' - the thin skinned chronically offended fans and pundits who are encouraged to tell tales on other football fans. This is the real divide amongst fans now and for the future.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: johndcgow, Night Terror, Vandella, Twinman, iaincampbelli

The Strange Rise of Anti-Sectarianism 9 years 8 months ago #889

Excellent article Dr Waiton. A number of posters have already referred to the commonly perceived imbalance in the debate and I can only endorse their views. Rangers have suffered from a lack of political and cultural supporters, particularly in the last decade or so. This has allowed those with an unfavourable attitude towards the club to promote a narrow and distorted analysis of the situation. One of the few merits of the offensive behaviour agenda has been that these same people have had some of their own assumptions challenged, at least to a certain extent.

Football fans are now in a difficult position. They are almost encouraged to conform to the new norms out of fear that, if they don't, then their club will become the sole focus of scrutiny and condemnation. I seem to remember you saying at Gerspride that only collective action by fans of different clubs, particularly Rangers and Celtic, would be enough to undermine the bill. But the very behaviour and attitudes encouraged by the bill serve to make this sort of collective action more difficult. Events in recent months have probably allowed the bill to bed in while attention was diverted elsewhere.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Twinman

The Strange Rise of Anti-Sectarianism 9 years 8 months ago #890

  • Vandella
  • Vandella's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Fresh Boarder
  • Posts: 19
  • Thank you received: 21
Ironically, I think the vast majority of football fans are truly offended by very little. I think the increase in fans pretending to be offended purely to get other fans and clubs into bother, is the real problem.

Rangers fans are starting to do this too, mainly because they've been inundated with mock-offendeness for so long and are starting to retaliate in kind because they don't know how else to counter it.

I personally can't stand it.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Twinman

The Strange Rise of Anti-Sectarianism 9 years 8 months ago #891

  • ErtaisLament
  • ErtaisLament's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Fresh Boarder
  • Posts: 4
  • Thank you received: 3
An interesting position, and well-put. It does raise a few questions for me, though.

The article seems to build to a main thrust that “sectarianism isn’t the problem, if ever it was. It’s the perception of sectarianism that has driven societal answers.” Exhibit A in evidence is Mr Graham Spiers, who at one point believed there was no sectarian problem, but now appears to have turned volte-face.

I wonder first if the example of Mr Spiers is a good one for the author to make, given the span of time cited. I’m not taking up for Mr Spiers when I say that fifteen years is no small amount of time, and at 38 I can look back on some positions I held at 23 with a mixture of bemusement and mild embarrassment. Are we unwilling to accept that minds can change in a decade and a half? I don’t think this is solid firmament- which Spiers position is closer to the truth? The old one? The new one? Both? Neither? Is he seeing what he wants to see now, or was he then? A flip-flop in the course of a year might well be taken for expediency, but one over fifteen years might be (arguably) maturity.

I also find it less than solid ground that we look to excuse certain modes of conduct based on their perception rather than their actuality, as if this excuses odiousness. “As we have seen, the rise of interest in sectarianism has absolutely nothing to do with the behaviour of people on the terraces or on the streets. It has, on the contrary, everything to do with the activities and rhetoric of the Scottish elites and their establishment of a virtual industry of anti-sectarianism,” writes the author, but is that really a defense? The author seems to ascribe certain motives to this “heightened awareness,” but it’s not hard to see how for many this might be a genuine awareness issue. Over the course of the last few decades, there has been a noted increase in the respect of human dignity, be it race, religion, sexual orientation, or so forth. It might be worth considering that this isn’t to put the boot in, but rather society waking up to the ills that sectarian sentiment brings to it on a human dignity level. Maybe the idea of screaming hordes hurling invective across the pitch at one another is inimical to the vision of the greater Scottish society. These are questions I think are worth considering.

I know that for me, life would somehow be diminished if I wasn’t occasionally treated to, say, an invitation from a staunchly Bluenose acquaintance of mine to challenge me to a game of “Draw Something” on my iPhone. Accepting, I then proceed to watch his ‘drawing’ of the words abbreviated by the acronym “FTP” appear across my screen.

Given the high degree of sensitivity (some would say over-sensitivity) present on both sides of the “OF” divide, does that plant me firmly in an increasingly backwards-minded minority?
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Night Terror

The Strange Rise of Anti-Sectarianism 9 years 8 months ago #892

  • ErtaisLament
  • ErtaisLament's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Fresh Boarder
  • Posts: 4
  • Thank you received: 3
I agree with your initial premise. That said, I've seen the same behavious from Rangers fans for as long as I've seen it from anyone else (and I can't stand it either, from anyone in any strip). "We never did what they did, but we're starting to have to" might be a tempting narrative, but I think it's fairer and more accurate to label it a "real problem" and leave it at that.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Night Terror

The Strange Rise of Anti-Sectarianism 9 years 8 months ago #893

  • johndcgow
  • johndcgow's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Administrator
  • Posts: 91
  • Thank you received: 136
ErtaisLament wrote:
An interesting position, and well-put. It does raise a few questions for me, though.

The article seems to build to a main thrust that “sectarianism isn’t the problem, if ever it was. It’s the perception of sectarianism that has driven societal answers.” Exhibit A in evidence is Mr Graham Spiers, who at one point believed there was no sectarian problem, but now appears to have turned volte-face.

I wonder first if the example of Mr Spiers is a good one for the author to make, given the span of time cited. I’m not taking up for Mr Spiers when I say that fifteen years is no small amount of time, and at 38 I can look back on some positions I held at 23 with a mixture of bemusement and mild embarrassment. Are we unwilling to accept that minds can change in a decade and a half? I don’t think this is solid firmament- which Spiers position is closer to the truth? The old one? The new one? Both? Neither? Is he seeing what he wants to see now, or was he then? A flip-flop in the course of a year might well be taken for expediency, but one over fifteen years might be (arguably) maturity.

I also find it less than solid ground that we look to excuse certain modes of conduct based on their perception rather than their actuality, as if this excuses odiousness. “As we have seen, the rise of interest in sectarianism has absolutely nothing to do with the behaviour of people on the terraces or on the streets. It has, on the contrary, everything to do with the activities and rhetoric of the Scottish elites and their establishment of a virtual industry of anti-sectarianism,” writes the author, but is that really a defense? The author seems to ascribe certain motives to this “heightened awareness,” but it’s not hard to see how for many this might be a genuine awareness issue. Over the course of the last few decades, there has been a noted increase in the respect of human dignity, be it race, religion, sexual orientation, or so forth. It might be worth considering that this isn’t to put the boot in, but rather society waking up to the ills that sectarian sentiment brings to it on a human dignity level. Maybe the idea of screaming hordes hurling invective across the pitch at one another is inimical to the vision of the greater Scottish society. These are questions I think are worth considering.

I know that for me, life would somehow be diminished if I wasn’t occasionally treated to, say, an invitation from a staunchly Bluenose acquaintance of mine to challenge me to a game of “Draw Something” on my iPhone. Accepting, I then proceed to watch his ‘drawing’ of the words abbreviated by the acronym “FTP” appear across my screen.

Given the high degree of sensitivity (some would say over-sensitivity) present on both sides of the “OF” divide, does that plant me firmly in an increasingly backwards-minded minority?

I think Dr Waiton makes a distinction between violence or a personal attack, and singing songs.

We should also stop pretending that we are allowed to say what we want, but the bigotry of others is the greatest taboo. Those who tweet about "breeds of hun" or "Der Huns" shouldn't lob lob stones when sitting in a big glass house.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
Time to create page: 0.073 seconds