At a time when the world has lost arguably the greatest figure of the 20th century, Nelson Mandela, there were some in the UK using the former South African President’s death and subsequent remembrance worldwide as a tool to bleat on about how the Celtic supporters group, the Green Brigade, are being persecuted and picked on by the club as well as the authorities.
Away from the whataboutery and excuses of elements of the Celtic support pointing to UEFA’s remembrance of Nelson Mandela [claiming that such events were political], a Senior Lecturer of the University of Glasgow and a trustee of The Celtic Trust – Jeanette Findlay – used Mandela’s death as a joke to claim that the Green Brigade are being blamed for everything.
First off, whether it was a joke or not, such a person who is supposedly labelled as an ‘intellectual’ really should choose her words more wisely. Not only does she hold a position of authority at one of Scotland’s top university’s, but also is a representative of the Celtic support.
During the Etims podcast show, the panel including Findlay, opened up discussing the ‘signer at Nelson Mandelas Funeral’ with one claiming that it was the Green Brigade responsible for the person.
However, what disgusted me was Findlay’s comment when she said: “I was wondering if it was them who killed Nelson Mandela?”
Really? Bringing a group of neds, vandals and wannabe IRA luvvies into the same sentence as Nelson Mandela? Let alone mocking his death in such a way?
The Green Brigade are responsible for their own downfall, they poured fuel onto their fire of hate and revolution against the Celtic board and have been left a mere smouldering wreck now – with only the converted and the brainwashed wallowing in pools of their own tears – over the demise of the Green Brigade. While the majority of other Celtic fans now see the self-confessed ULTRAs group as falling upon their own sword.
Findlay’s comments really do not surprise me though as previous comments from her have been just as ludicrous and damaging.
Back in 2007 on the Nicky Campbell’s Radio Five Live show, the then-chairwoman of the Celtic Trust defended the singing of IRA songs by sections of the Celtic support.
When she was asked if the appointment of former politician Dr John Reid, as club chairman, would be a greater stain on Celtic’s reputation than songs that glorify terrorism.
Findlay went on to defend such songs on the show, [which Celtic distanced themselves from in the aftermath]she said: “They may take a particular view of the history, of what happened in Ireland, which is different from many other people. So I don’t call those pro-terrorist songs.”
Her comments on that show increased opinion that Celtic Park was a hotbed of IRA support and did damage to the club’s reputation across the UK. It was a massive own goal by the £40,000 a year senior lecturer.
While her defence of fellow Celtic fans is admirable, the fact that she seems to be blind to the group’s behaviour over the years is telling. Findlay is a leading member of the Fans Against Criminalisation, a group which the Green Brigade is an integral part of, so it is no great surprise that Findlay will not criticise or condemn the Ultras group as they suckle from the same teet.
She even implied that the Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell was somehow behind Celtic being fined by UEFA over the Green Brigade’s F**k UEFA banner and the Wallace/Sands banner.
She claimed: “Peter Lawwell and his knee jerk announcements and sometimes considered announcements has almost invited UEFA to fine us. He did the same thing after Motherwell.”
One of the other panelists asked: “Are you suggesting or saying it was him who reported the Udinese thing, to UEFA?”
Jeanette replied: “Well, he came out and had a rant about that banner. Even the William Wallace Milan banner, would the UEFA official even notice such a banner and make a big deal about it? I could be wrong. There’s political banners at lots of different grounds.”
So Lawwell reported Celtic fans to UEFA, which resulted in the club being fined, just to get rid of the Green Brigade? Really? Who would believe this tripe in all seriousness. Except for the brainwashed believers that Findlay and her cronies regularly preach too.
After the joke at the expense of Mandela’s death, all she did was attack Peter Lawwell – why?
Was it down to her resolution at the recent AGM being thrown out by the board over the living wage? Certainly a bit rich for a senior lecturer to make demands of the Celtic board to pay more money to workers when she herself is on around £40,000 per year. Has she demanded that all the cleaners, admin staff and others at the university she works at, are paid a living wage also? Or is it just at Celtic that she makes such a demand?
Speaking after the AGM, Lawwell commenting on the living wage resolution said: “It was very emotional and you have to respect the points of view but it is a very complicated issue. What I can say is this club is a first-class employer. We look after our people and their well-being, I don’t think there would be any club or company in Britain that would look after them better. They are satisfied, we had a staff survey last year which showed that.
“The majority of staff who fall into that (living wage) category are on match-day, so it is second incomes for people, who top-up in stewarding and catering on a Saturday. It is an established payment structure which is independent to anybody, government or companies, and we have to be in control of our business.”
Findlay had the gall to label the decision as ‘the grubbiest’ ever made by a Parkhead board which “shames you and shames us.”
Sorry but I have to disagree, Celtic Football Club is not a charity it is a business and therefore must trade as so. Celtic rightly donates money to charity each year, but why should it pay those who are on a second income more than what others work for? In fact if they are not happy in said positions at the relevant wage structure – why work for such a low wage at all as a second job?
It is certainly rich of Findlay to make such demands, all the while she lives a nice wee house on a wage that every one of those not on a living wage at Celtic Park can only dream of. It’s a bit like a Tory millionaire MP trying to tell those on benefits that £70 is enough to live off, before splashing out on a bottle of Dom Peringnon and then putting it on their expenses form.
Findlay’s own recent history is more of a stain on Celtic Football Club than this current board, her comments shame the position that she holds, but also shames the Celtic support that she professes to represent.