In the first of two pieces on the issue of Dave Jones chants, Rob Holmes calls for reason to prevail amongst Leeds fans and an end to the thoughtless songs that have tainted match days for the best part of 6 months. For my take on the matter and just why above anything else, it’s critical that we move on for our own sakes and that of Leeds United can be found here...
We are Leeds, We are Vile, Dave Jones is (NOT) A PAEDOPHILE. This delightful ditty has been sung with increasing regularity since October, and with increasing gusto.
There are times when following Leeds United, you feel like you’re screaming into the wind. This is one of those occasions. I don’t for one second, expect anybody to take a blind bit of notice of what I’m about to write, a quick scan of social media proves the point instantly:
‘Cannot wait to abuse Dave Jones on Saturday. Hope him and Kirkland both get knocked out this time’
Quite what Chris Kirkland has done wrong, apart from being on the wrong end of an idiot’s drunken push, I’ll never know.
I digress, the chant is not funny and furthermore it’s got absolutely ***k all to do with supporting and following Leeds United. This chant is indicative of the negativity swirling around the club, the negativity that’s becoming entrenched. Leeds United is a mess, we don’t know the intentions of the owners, and we’re slipping into a footballing coma both on and off the field. There is plenty to get angry about, to sing about, to protest yet the only thing a section of the support can get excited about, is a manager that in reality means nothing to us.
So, let’s dispel the paedophile myth shall we? Dave Jones went to court in 2000, on 21 separate charges, now at this point a lot of you will be thinking “21 Charges? That’s a lot. There’s no smoke without fire.” Yeah, well there is with a smoke machine.
The charges against him were reduced after two of the alleged victims pulled out of proceedings before the trial. Another alleged victim declined to appear or refused to give evidence, the Judge recorded not guilty verdicts on the remaining charges. Here’s the important bit, in summing up The Judge decreed: “No wrongdoing whatsoever on your part has been established”.
Following the case one of the claimants was later found to have fabricated their claim of abuse in not just in Dave Jones’ case but also in other cases in order to win compensation. Alongside the fabricated claims, there is the personal tragedy in all this, the day Dave Jones was arrested and charged his father became ill, slipped into a coma and later died.
So perhaps it’s understandable that Dave Jones might get a little irrational, when one section of a football club’s fans continue to have a jolly old jape (singing songs about Dave Jones being a paedophile have been going on since 1999, whenever we happen to play against one of his sides) at his expense.
If you want to at least try and understand why Dave Jones gets angry at Leeds United fans, read this interview from 2004 and at least try to understand the personal upheaval.
Think of how angry we are as a collective for the families of Kevin Speight and Christopher Loftus , how we react every time those songs are sung in our direction. Following Turkey chants sung in our direction against Sheffield Wednesday, from I should add, a section of their support, not all – the general intelligence can be summed up by the fact they chose to let of a red flare – some of our supporters ripped chairs from the floor and threw them in the direction of the home support.
One person reacting irrationally and angrily to something that has happened time and time again…see the similarity?
I expect the comments section to fill up rapidly, excusing the behaviour, referring to Istanbul chants, they did this, he did that, but hey the vast majority of you aren’t 12 years old and at school.
When a highly paid, privileged footballer or manager does something that deserves a response, by all means let them have it. If anybody feels like turning up on Saturday in a netball uniform, then you will literally be the funniest person inside Elland Road. Ryan Giggs, John Terry and Darren Ferguson have all deserved ridicule, and have received some withering chants.
By all means sing ‘We’re all vile animals’ that is a far wittier response than singing a song about being a paedophile. Maybe the song is as a result of boredom, of 2 years of watching the ball fly higher than a rocket to the moon, yet another thing we can push at the door of Ken Bates or Neil Warnock.
We have an incoming manager, a collection of young players to be excited about, cheaper ticket prices and an escape from relegation/push for the playoffs (delete as appropriate if you’re Colin W) to get behind.
Elland Road, the Kop, our away support, is at its very best when crackling with energy, purpose and pushing the side forward. Anybody that was at Elland Road for the game against Bristol Rovers, the cup replays, Manchester United or countless over examples will have been witness to on its day the best atmosphere and support anywhere on the isle.
Let’s utilise that constructively.
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