A guest post by S. Neilson
The season ticket renewal booklets came out this week. Some of the points on their list of reasons to renew:
Because we’re a club like no other
Because we’re a community and a cause
Because you know the history
Because here, you’ll never walk alone
Well, here are some of the reasons not to renew just yet.
– Racism –
Leigh Griffiths led a full pub in singing “Rudi Skacel is a fucking refugee”. He came on as a sub at 60 minutes in the next Celtic game. Lennon described him as embarrassed about his actions but Griffiths was singing a different song when he cupped his ear at detractors after scoring. Lennon commented that he predicted a long and successful career at Celtic for Griffiths and insisted that we’d see a lot more from him next season. The club has as of yet not issued any public statement in condemnation of Griffiths actions and as it stands Celtic seem to be warming up for a sweeping it under the rug campaign of silence. At ICT on Sunday they will still read their mission statement before kick off telling the story of a club open to all and they will warn supporters against ‘unacceptable behaviour’.
– Relocation –
The Green Brigade were relocated and dispersed by Celtic. Whether a response to media pressure (we don’t see that with Griffiths) or an attempt to get rid of all political undesirables (we don’t see that with Griffiths) the PLC turned on the supporters. They cooperated with the heavy handed Police Scotland efforts to alienate and criminalize sections of the Celtic support inside Celtic Park. After Motherwell, the club collapsed all channels of communication with the Green Brigade and ignored requests that they support the Christmas food drive organized by the group, which they had previously planned to do. Now, the group have been returning to Celtic park. The club has spoken out against the OBFA bill and called for an early review. We can only hope these are signs of real progress. However before anything is concrete and while we still ultimately don’t know the Club’s stance on the group going into the next season, what message does it send when you renew your book? Not renewing just now is the easiest way of showing support for the Green Brigade.
– The Rangers –
The club that discriminated, the club that lied, the club that cheated and stole, and the club that died. In the small print of the season ticket renewal booklet the name of this deceased club is used:
Season Tickets in sections 115 to 118 (inclusive) or sections 416 to 419 (inclusive) are not valid for any home cup competition match versus Rangers FC
Rangers FC no longer exist. A miniature point compared to the other two perhaps. Or is it indicative of a whole attitude of sweeping things under the rug? The mission statements and the slogans and the jokes about Sevco come thick and fast but what’s really behind all of that?
– Give It Time –
I’m not saying folk shouldn’t renew at all. What I am saying is that Celtic supporters may have a responsibility to hold off just now. There’s a full month till the deadline still. If the PLC feels the Celtic support are reluctant to renew then surely this will have some carry over to how they conduct themselves in their meetings with the Green Brigade and their disciplining of Griffiths after the club investigation has been completed. They’ll need to address the issues that are souring their customers to them. Sadly that’s what it all seems to come down to. I’m probably kidding myself on. It’s been a long season.