The events of the weekend have, finally, shone a light over the sectarian abuse many Celtic players have faced on social media.
Not so long ago, there was a social media blackout from football clubs and online media outlets in an attempt to get the social media sites like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to take action against accounts posting racist abuse but to also make changes to the way they allow accounts to be set up to allow accountability and punishments for people partaking in this kind of crime.
Because that is what it is. A crime. So is sectarianism, anti Catholic rhetoric and and anti Irish racism. Both serious crimes, but both not taken as seriously as “real” racism by the media and the public. Until now.
But if you want to know the extent of the sectarian, you know what, lets just call it racism. If you want to know the REAL extent of the racist abuse Celtic players and staff like Neil Lennon and Shane Duffy have had to endure online, don’t take my word for it.
Speaking to Sky Sports News, anti-sectarian charity Nil By Mouth director Dave Scott gave a real shocking insight at the extent of not only the weekends tragic trends on Twitter and Facebook in Glasgow, but historically against two of Celtic’s most prominent Irish members of staff, “We did some basic analysis over the weekend and it was astonishing the amount of racist and sectarian and horrific words which were being used on social media accounts in Glasgow – we are talking tens of thousands.
“We need people to be informed, they need people to buy into it and they need to work with people who work in that field day in day out to have a better grasp of the words, the language, and the harm caused.
“If they don’t want to speak to me, speak to people who have been affected. Come and speak to people like Neil Lennon or Shane Duffy. Ask them about their experience and how it has impacted them.
“”This is the second time in a number of weeks where we’ve had something set up with a so-called party atmosphere that has descended into sectarian and racial hatred in Glasgow city centre – and that just cannot be allowed to continue.”
Horrific and depressing. It’s not news to people close to Lennon and Duffy or Celtic supporters. But maybe, just maybe, some good can come out of the weekends shameful and embarrassing scenes and help to rid Scotland of this cancer once and for all.
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