Years ago, when the great Scottish lightweight boxer Jim Watt had a bout somewhere in South America, he did a radio interview with a prominent sports journalist. Maybe it was Harry Carpenter. I don’t know, but whoever he was, the timing of the fight was dictated by TV schedules which meant it took place at some ungodly hour, and the journalist put it to Jim Watt straight.
Jim, how do you feel about having to fight at four in the morning?
Watt never missed a beat.
Nae bother. Everyone in Glasgow fights at four in the morning.
I thought it was hilarious at the time, but maybe not so much today, as the triumphalist unionists strut around Glasgow, intimidating anyone who looks like a Yes voter in the referendum.
Tonight, in a city which proclaims itself part of the United Kingdom, there are people making Nazi gestures in front of a war memorial. The same people are burning a Scottish saltire which just happens to be the insignia of Glasgow Rangers, thus proving that idiocy is not a barrier to following a football club, as if anyone needed reminding.
Tonight in Glasgow, we’re witnessing the sort of triumphalism that we saw in Belgrade and Kiev, and we all know how well that turned out. Tonight we see a rabble of drunken thugs attempting to intimidate their fellow citizens for holding a particular political opinion and we have to ask ourselves the obvious question.
If these thugs had appeared the night before the referendum, would the moderate No voters still have supported the Union?
In a less regulated society, such as the former Yugoslavia, I think we’d already be witnessing militias forming but luckily the UK is a stable entity with the capacity to stand on displays of extremism.
The authorities need to do that urgently. They need to crush these unionist extremist idiots because if they don’t, they face the possibility of very serious civil disorder from now on. Many of the Yes people never realised how savage and vehement the unionists were until they were attacked after the count, and neither did many of the wavering No voters.
If these thugs had emerged yesterday, Scotland would be independent today.