BBC News reported The Catholic Church has criticised Scottish prosecutors for cautioning a Celtic goalkeeper who crossed himself
In other words he made the sign of the cross, as Catholics are taught to do.during a match against Rangers. Artur Boruc was cautioned for a breach of the peace over the incident at an Old Firm match at Ibrox in February. The Catholic Church called it "worrying and alarming" as the sign of the cross was a "gesture of religious reverence". However, the Crown Office said the decision was based on the player's behaviour, rather than a single act. In addition to crossing himself, the player was alleged to have made gestures to the crowd
I bet if he had taken out a prayer rug, faced Mecca, and prayed to Allah, they would not have said anything about it.
What sort of gestures. Did he bless them?at the start of the second half of the game on 12 February. Strathclyde Police investigated complaints that Boruc, 26, had angered a section of the crowd with his behaviour and they submitted a report to the procurator fiscal. However, as an alternative to prosecution, Boruc was cautioned.
I wish he had been prosecuted, and faced a jury of his peers, rather than a cowardly government administratorThat does not leave him with a criminal record, although the information about the caution will be retained. The Crown Office said his actions "provoked alarm and crowd trouble and as such constituted a breach of the peace".
Cranmer blogged And what if, in some future World Cup, the USA’s ‘Great Satan’ happens to encounter Iran’s ‘Warriors of Allah’? Would an American Christian who crosses himself, potentially offending the Muslims, be arrested?
Iain Dale blogged I accept that Celtic v Rangers matches are highly charged affairs, but the sign of the cross is used by both Protestants and Catholics alike. It's used by all sorts of sportsmen just before they begin to perform or after they score. To be cautioned by the Police for making the sign before a game of football is nothing short of a disgrace. And I speak as a confirmed agnostic. We are after all a Christian country.
Let's imagine that in the Cricket World Cup, Pakistan plays India and one of the Pakistani Muslim players bows to Mecca. Do we really think the Police would even contemplate cautioning him because he may have offended the off Hindu India supporter? Of course not, and nor should they. All the Police have achieved by this ridiculous caution is a further accentuation of the religious divide.
Mr Eugenides has a different take on this HERE.
Iain Murray blogged The match in question, between Glasgow Celtic (the Catholic club) and Glasgow Rangers (the Protestant club), is a notoriously sectarian affair, but a criminal record for expressing your faith? God help Scotland!