Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Larkhall unites against Scottish Goverment’s sectarian ‘slur‘ sent to Scottish schools, just as well the transfer season opens up in January!

Dear All

How to make friends and influence people in Larkhall!

Or not!

The Scottish Government has upset the people of Larkhall by what people in the town are calling ‘one slur too many’.

And the focus their anger is a song by Peter Nardini which highlights and talks about small-mindedness and sectarianism in the Lanarkshire town.

The seasonal xmas topping, implying that the locals are so educationally backward that they can’t spell properly either!

No whit a mean in that by the way?

In the Capaldi song it features the lines:

“Where children learn what’s richt from wrang frae the words they see spray painted on the buildings, and then their ain children, grow up jist the very same wi an attitude that’s never changed for decades.”

This is a case of someone trying to be too clever and it blowing up in their face.

The song is part of a teaching packing called A’ Adam’s Bairns which is used to touch on the issues of including racism and sectarianism in Scotland, the slave trade and the Highland Clearances.

Unfortunately the people who put the pack together are finding that their ‘enlightenment’ needs a new bulb.

Reverend Lindsay Schluter of Larkhall’s Trinity Church said:

“Larkhall is being singled out in a way that is not helpful or fair. It is no different to other areas in Glasgow or Lanarkshire in that, yes, it does have a small contingent who cause trouble but the majority are good people”.

When I blogged on Peter Kearney, Scottish Catholic Church Media Director, I said something similar, yes there are bigots but they are a minority and as student Christopher Murphy further down says they are mainly connected to football supporters.

A’ Adam’s Bairns was funded by the National Lottery and Oxfam and written by educational development organisation Scotdec with input from the National Library of Scotland.

A spokeswoman for Scotdec said:

“The resource does not focus solely on sectarianism or Larkhall but covers a wide and diverse range of topics and we’re really keen to get that across.”

Unfortunately, the highlight is the slur.

Perhaps in future before the Scottish Government launches anything they should take the time to read what they are effectively sticking their name to.

Obviously someone was either too stupidity or indifferent to see the train wreck coming down the tracks.
Maybe the Scottish Government should given them a plastic shovel and put them to some use by snow clearing in Larkhall.

This is what happens when university educated middle classes try to play at being the ‘working classes.’

And the local view:

Grace Girvan, 55, senior carer in nursing home

“I was in an Orange band when I met my husband. He was a Catholic so when we got married I become a Catholic too. It was never that bad in the past, just banter between Celtic and Rangers fans.”

Jim Girvan, 63, part-time driver

“Every place has its bad elements, but there is not much trouble here. Anything that happens is seen as religious and immediately journalists ... go into the pubs and ask all the idiots what they think.”

Sandra Murray, 51, bank worker

“I don’t think Larkhall is any different from any other place, to be honest. You get bigots everywhere.”

Christopher Murphy, 25, student

“I am a Celtic supporter and I visit about every two weeks to come shopping. It’s not even about religion, but gets portrayed that way. It’s really about football supporters.”

Sandra Haggerty 55, co-ordinator for Victim Support Scotland

“It’s always been a lovely place, I grew up here, but left 20 years back. Its got this big reputation which is just not true – the problems only come up during the big games.”

William Brown, 39, unemployed

“I’ve lived here my whole life and it’s a beautiful place to stay. Sectarian issues are got out of proportion. It’s really all a myth what you hear.”

Jim Battie, 71, retired

“I have been here since 1969 and it’s an absolutely great place to live. The problems of sectarianism are over-stated.”

In football terms, an own goal!

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University


David Farrer said...

I note that your page is green, then white and then green again.

Perhaps one of the green parts should be orange.

But then I suppose that the whole page would look like a certain flag...

Isn't all too ridiculous for words?

This is why I am a Kilmarnock fan.

Anonymous said...

There should be no sectarian schools. End of.

George Laird said...

Dear David

My page is green because that was the original setup colour. I have tinkered with other colours but found that this format is easier for people to read.

You state:

" This is why I am a Kilmarnock fan".

Good luck sir!

Do you have any expensive foreign players or does killie believe in giving local youngsters a chance?

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

George Laird said...

Dear Anon

"There should be no sectarian schools. End of".

There are no sectarian schools in Scotland as far as I am aware.

Do you know different?

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

David Farrer said...


I am only a Killie fan because we lived next door to the ground when I was aged about nine and my father took me to a couple of games. Never been back since. Much safer than supporting one of the Old Firm though...

It looks like they do develop the local talent, so to speak.

I enjoy your contributions to the Spectator site.

Anonymous said...

Dear George

Thee are sectarian schools. Catholic and state. Prove me wrong.

George Laird said...

Dear David

"I enjoy your contributions to the Spectator site".

They will let anyone comment there but thanks for the support.

So many on there have a go at trying to put the boot into me.

It is like walking into the Tory pit of vipers.

God how they hate humble Glaswegians pottering about the place.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

George Laird said...

Dear Anon

"Thee are sectarian schools. Catholic and state. Prove me wrong".

In the strict sense of the word you are right.

However I see schools as schools regardless of the religious aspect.

For me in Scotland a "sectarian" school would be one that promotes hate and I don't recognise that in Scotland.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University