[I actually said that the title needed dumbed down for newsnow rather than the introduction. “Rangers – Impossible to Kill” would draw tons of readers but not to worry. EP]
Everyone who visits this site will be aware of the many current issues impacting upon Scottish Football in general, but on Rangers in particular. We all have a passing familiarity with EBT’s, CVA’s, Newco’s and the other jargon surrounding insolvency.
We have watched – sometimes with amusement, even hilarity as they lurch from crisis to crisis, but also with incredulity as the establishment of our nation – the government, the media, even the courts seem to favour the continuation of a diseased and corrupt organisation in the face of natural justice and more evidence of wrongdoing than any prosecutor could ever hope for.
Even the court appointed administrators have operated from the first day, not in the interests of the creditors of this bankrupt club but like supporters whose only objective is to see them escape any penalties or liabilities their reckless and criminal behaviours have deserved.
To see the way that the press and T.V. media are defending the indefensible would have one believe that they are the victims rather than the beneficiaries of years of arrogant misbehaviour and outright cheating.
This being Lent, unreconstructed Papists like myself can find their thoughts turning to spiritual matters including the concept of Penance, with the attended issues of repentance, contrition and importantly atonement and amendment.
While I would never suggest that these values are exclusively those of the Church of Rome most would agree I am, sure that we do have a rather greater interest in them at this time of year than some other faith communities.
In the light of this close focus I have been aware that the Football Club currently in administration in the south side of Glasgow, and the apparent majority of those who follow follow have no concept of them whatsoever.
In the kilometres of newsprint and the billions of words in cyberspace which have been used to dissect and explore every aspect of the Rangers crisis, I have yet to read or hear the word – sorry.
Indignation and fury appear to be the guiding humours of the mob and that will come as no surprise to any of us, but the club itself and its representatives have been notably lacking in any sense of regret for all that has brought them to this state – other than a whining self pity – the emotion that all bullies feel when the tables are turned against them.
Never a day goes by without some reference – often from folk who really should know better, but sometimes from others who haven’t a clue what they are really talking about – to Rangers’ traditions, cultural heritage and prid
Those of us who have experienced what these really stand for over many years have difficulty in grasping why anyone other than the uruk hai and those who profit from being part of the huns, could possibly defend their traditions and heritage. As for their pride, that has been a given for so long that even a close look at what they are proud of is scarcely possible in this still narrow minded and bigoted little corner of the world.
In my tradition we learn that it is not enough to be sorry, to show contrition. Its is also required for forgiveness that we have a firm purpose of amendment and a wish to atone for our misdeeds.
From where I sit, not one of these aspects have coloured the Rangers saga.
Eddie has often railed about the fact that they have never owned up to the error of sectarianism which was the hallmark of this club for the best part of 80 years and still marks their core support out to the present day – there has never been an apology.
This present drama is no different. There is no sense of wrongdoing whatsoever. Not in the spending of monies which they did not have, not in the improper contractual arrangements which appear to have been a feature of the last 20 years or so, not in the defrauding of the tax man or the outright refusal to pay debts owed to other clubs or services – not at all.
My own view of this unholy mess is that anyone who expects, or hopes for an apology, for any of these offences will wait till hell freezes over.
To add insult to injury there is an expectation that they should be forgiven as a matter of course. There is a belief that we are all dependent on them and their vile followers, and I sense that if they are restored, without penalty, to a state not markedly different from their present one, other than a slightly smaller purse for a while, that they will have the same sense of entitlement that has marked them out since the early years of the 20th century.
The mantras of Struth are their war cries and this model of self aggrandisement, of unfocussed arrogance, will mark them out in the future as surely as in the past.
Unless they are forced to suffer and to be humiliated by the enforcement of proper punishments by the football authorities, should the rule breaking be proved beyond doubt, they will be unchanged, indeed they may be even more empowered.
I do not hold out much hope that justice will prevail, but time will tell.