That which is cultural is not amenable to reason.

Tomorrow in George Square, there will not be much that could be described as rational.

I have been heartened at the extent of the revulsion of ‘Orange fest’ from across the community.

This is the attempt by the Orange Order to portray itself as a harmless fraternal organisation.

They have every right, in a democracy, to have their festival just as other people have the equal right to call them out.

For me, the Orange Order remains the local version of the Klan.

They are thirled to a supremacist mind sent that makes them the Bosnian Serbs of the North Atlantic.

For half a century after the partitioning of this country the Westminster state allowed them to have their own VolkStaat in the Six Counties.

Now Glasgow is the scene for the celebration of this malevolent drum banging insecurity.

In a city that does not yet have a memorial to An Gorta Mór and no Saint Patrick’s parade, the contrast is stark.

No doubt someone in Glasgow City Council thought ‘OrangeFest’ having George Square was a good idea.

Perhaps the electorate will care to remember this when they next have the power of the ballot.

In the North East of this country, where Orangeism originated, political unionism has taken strides forward in the decades of the Peace Process.

However, one part of the Unionist community that has not moved appreciably forward is the Orange Order.

They are trapped in the past where the certainties soothed them.

Once they swaggered triumphantly, but now they are wrong-footed by history.

It is the death rattle of an old subculture, the noisy expression of an earlier paradigm.

In a parallel universe in George Square tomorrow, an organisation set up to extol the misremembered exploits of the Crusaders will do their thing.

It will be a fun day for the family and there will be a Bouncy Castle siege.

This pseudo chivalric order has previous for marching past to Mosques to taunt the Ummah of their second prizes at Beirut and Sidon in the twelfth century.

When people of the Islamic faith complain, they are told that if they do not like the culture of a Christian country then they can leave and go back to the places where the Crusaders invaded.

You see dear reader logic is not a strong point of these latter day warriors of the Cross.

Which brings us back to culture…

I doubt that many of those enjoying OrangeFest will have heard of the League of Augsburg.

It was  formed 1686 by Austria, Bavaria, Brandenburg, the Dutch Republic, England, the Holy Roman Empire, Ireland, the Palatinate of the Rhine, Portugal, Savoy, Saxony, Scotland, Spain and Sweden.

Once the conjoined kingdoms of England and Scotland joined in it was re-named the Grand Alliance.

It had one purpose, and that was to counter the huge power of France.

Only in the North East of this country and in Scotland  is that conflict seen in ethno-religious terms.

Back in our parallel universe our latter-day crusader knights burn an effigy of ‘the durty Arab Saladin’ on their traditional bonfire.

Of course it would not be approved by the man from the Health & Safety Executive to point out to these chivalric chaps with the super lager that Ṣalāḥ ad-Dīn was, in fact, a Kurd.

Modern Scotland likes to style itself as being tolerant of many cultures.

Certainly this Irishman could not write them a testimonial on that regard.

I doubt if any of the…ahem…revellers will have a firm grasp on the nuances of the War of the Grand Alliance against France from 1688 to 1697.

However, they know what they know that is that the Prods beat the Taigs, and they are indeed The People.

That said the Brethren have every right to enjoy the public spaces if it has been so authorised by the civic authorities and Police Scotland have no objections.

However, it must be clear to anyone with the facility of reason that what Glasgow will witness tomorrow is a dying sub culture.

When it comes time to write the obituary of the Orange belief system then right thinking folk might think want to have a party.


Discover Phil’s dramatic play Rebellion