Leigh Griffiths

Leigh Griffiths now plays football for a club founded by refugees.

They fled from their home country for the most basic of reasons. Survival.

An Gorta Mór, the Irish Holocaust, created the community that birthed Celtic.

I don’t know much about Mr Rudi Skácel other than that he was a damn fine footballer.

That is all that should matter on Planet Fitba.

In his prime I would have loved to have seen him wear the green and white hoops of my club.

That’s the club that Leigh Griffiths is privileged to play for.

The current Celtic manager has been subjected to a decade and a half of racist abuse in Scotland.

You may have noticed, dear reader, that neither Neil Lennon nor Rudi Skácel is black.

Racism happens to people who are as white as Leigh Griffiths.

I am aware that, shamefully, Rudi Skácel has been subject to racist abuse during his playing career in Scotland.

Given that the main offenders have been Hibernian supporters, another club founded by Irish immigrants, makes this all the more shameful.

That the mainstream media is gleeful about this most recent incident involving Leigh Griffiths when they were largely silent on the Famine Song is entirely irrelevant.

If a pub video emerged involving the Genocide Choir and a current Sevco player then the Celtic support, and all right-thinking folk in Scotland, would be justifiably outraged.

When people become refugees it isn’t a lifestyle choice, it’s a necessity.

It is a defining mark of a civilised society that it welcomes refugees.

The community that created Celtic Football club could teach a master class to the new arrivals in Glasgow in what it is like to endure nativist hostility over generations.

It is that belief system, the hatred of the outsider that created the mind-set of David Limond.

There needs to be some consequential learning for Celtic’s new striker on what the club expects of him off the field.

If he was part of that event after being arrested for sending a racist tweet, he has had enough warnings to know exactly what he is doing.

It would appear that he hasn’t learned anything from that brush with the law for indulging in racism.

At the time an anti-racist charity  in Scotland called for him to be hammered by the football authorities over this, and rightly so.

That the same NGO was, at the very least, hesitant over declaring against the Famine Song in 2008 is entirely beside the point.

That the mainstream media in Scotland still haven’t learned the term ‘anti-Irish racism’ is also beside the point.

Griffiths later apologised and deleted the racist tweet.

However, he could have chosen to learn from that incident, but he clearly didn’t.

You can’t force any adult to be educated about anything.

Leigh Griffith now appears to have a track record of indulging in racist behaviour and Celtic have to take him on about it.

Moreover, anyone attempting to minimise or mitigate on his behalf because he currently scores goals for Celtic is simply being part of the problem.

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