Sport

Witty political banter has grow to be vile insults which might be higher in position at soccer grounds

Witty political banter and oafish jeering has become vile insults which would be better in place at football grounds… yellow cards would have been in order had the Westminster confrontation been at Old Trafford or Stamford Bridge

  • Oafish jeering among our MPs has degenerated into provocative abuse
  • As well as vile insults which would be better in place at some football grounds
  • Those who preside over our destiny have descended into morass of lost manners

It is just as well that there are no terraces in the seat of Parliament.

If the rabble in the House of Commons were standing there would be grave danger not only of fights breaking out but also riots leading to crushing fatalities.

The gangways and corridors in what used to be the home of democracy are not spacious enough to ensure escape from the hooligans who now inhabit ‘this place.’ What used to be witty banter and oafish jeering among our MPs has degenerated into provocative abuse and vile insults which would be better in place at some of our football grounds.

If the rabble in the House of Commons were standing there would be grave danger

If the rabble in the House of Commons were standing there would be grave danger

Somewhere along the way, those who presume to preside over our destiny have descended into the morass of lost manners, forgotten dignity and forsaken decency which now engulf so much of our society.

In truth, they are fast reaching the point where comparison with their behaviours is an insult to the majority of today’s football supporters.

The hostility in what is now aptly called the Lower Chamber on Brexit nights this week was rabid. Gone, among many of occupants of the green leather bleachers, was any pretence at decorum and civility.

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Respect was drowned by insults for Boris Johnson from the moment he rose to his feet and continued the following day at his first Prime Minister’s Questions. The privilege of the House was abused by a frothing stream of haters labelling him ‘a liar.’ He did himself no justice, either, when he snapped into a four-letter word.

So dripping with malice and venom were so many of the exchanges that yellow cards all round would have been in order had the confrontation been at Old Trafford or Stamford Bridge. Red, even.

Sadly, the referee generated as much distrust as the opposition feel for the Prime Minister. Not least by allowing the abuse of Mr Johnson to continue unchallenged.

Instead John Bercow rebuked Mr Johnson for saying ‘Jeremy Corbyn’ – was the offence one of breaking protocol in speaking a name in the debate or using foul language – and then flew into a rant against Chancellor Sajid Javid as he lavished billions on the National Health Service, education and the poiice.

He did chastise Labour back-benchers (oh so gently) for another breach of the code of conduct – clapping a speech by one of their own – but by then the sacred aura of impartiality had flown the Speaker’s chair.

The gangways and corridors in what used to be the home of democracy are not spacious

The gangways and corridors in what used to be the home of democracy are not spacious

The unedifying spectacle continued largely unchecked, inside and outside Parliament. The morning after his brother lost another vote, Jo Johnson resigned his post in government and his seat in the Commons.

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That came at about the time England goal-scoring legend Michael Owen was claiming there is no loyalty in football.

Maybe so, but it is worse in politics. Why did Jo-Jo the Remainer accept a seat at Brexit Boris’s Cabinet table in the first place? Why did he resign at the moment of maximum discomfort for his own brother?

Christmas dinner should be a bundle of laughs in the Johnson family household this year.

The football community, it has to be said, is better behaved by and large these days than the residents of the Westminster bubble.

The more reasoned and rational MPs will be aghast at that comparison but what are they doing to restrain those colleagues who would be put to shame by those around them if they were ordered to do community service behind the goal at Millwall.

One thing is for sure. Those who make up this posturing, screaming, gesticulating mob are not fit to sit in judgement on whether the law which prohibits standing at football grounds should be repealed.

Whatever their view of the veracity of the Prime Minister, those MPs who are campaigning against all-seater stadia are doing so in a populist appeal to the electorate, not in the interest of our safety.


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