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As is the case around every Old Firm derby, the eyes and ears of the Scottish media were

focused on
the behavior of fans and what would be sung on the Hampden terraces. After successfully turning
Sectarianism in to an industry since Jack McConnell’s government made efforts to stamp out the
much-exaggerated sectarianism problem in Scotland, the media have went to great lengths to
portray one of the worlds classic football matches as a stain on society.

Since around 2002 when the first major steps were made to tackle the issue, rightly or wrongly many
songs were supposedly to be banned. There was often rumours of a ‘banned list’ however no such
list has even been produced. This is a complex societal problem and to think that by banning a few
words and songs would make it go away was remarkably naïve. One word which has been more or
less criminalised is the use of the word “Fenian”, however strangely this ban only appears to be in
place if it’s being uttered by a Rangers supporter. This has been shown time and time again by the
Celtic support using it in songs and banners, without any comment from the very people who appear
to care so much about the problem.

Unfortunately, there are many instances of hypocrisy in the media and the Scottish political elite.
While people are scared to question apartheid schooling and the continuing normalisation of
political figures showing support for the IRA, they will never be taken seriously. However, the biggest
disparity and one that has raised its head this weekend is the acceptance of the use of the word
‘Hun’.

For as long as I can remember, this has been a word used by the Celtic support towards Rangers fans
and they have long claimed that it simply does mean ‘Rangers fan’. This seems to be a line accepted
by the media, politicians and football authorities. For the Rangers fans though, this word has a
deeper meaning and has its own sectarian connotations. The feeling is that if Rangers fans are being
criminalised for the use of the word ‘Fenian’, then surely the same should apply to ‘Hun’.

It’s easy to pick apart the claim by the Celtic fans that it means ‘Rangers fan’ only. The first point
being that it’s a word thrown at fans of other Scottish clubs, in particular, Hearts. If you have
attended a Hearts match against Celtic recently, you will no doubt have heard the chants of “Go
Home You Huns”. Now, either the Hearts section of the stadium was overran with Rangers on those
occasions, or it was more connected to the clubs perceived Protestant background.

The other example we can look at to uncover the true sectarian meaning of the word is across the
Irish sea. Republicans for a long time have been using the phrase “Kill All Huns” to intimidate the
Protestant population. As the picture below shows, this Orange Hall in Dungonnell was the target of
threatening graffiti which contained this phrase. The Orange Order all over the world is an
organisation for Protestants and contains members who support all different football clubs. So once
again, we have an instance where this word is used to target Protestant people, with no direct
relation to Rangers Football Club whatsoever.
Dungonnell Orange Hall, taken by ex-Antrim councillor Brian Graham

So with these examples in mind, the next time we see a Kill All Huns banner being unfurled in Celtic
Park, or the Celtic captains sings “Fuck the Huns” on a drunken night out after an Old Firm, surely the
media must ask themselves who is being targeted by the use of the word and why not only Celtic
fans but also employees can use it without any fear of prosecution as it’s clear this is aimed at far
more than simply “Rangers fans”.

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