I’ve just come back – ironically from a moving remembrance service – to read the latest in this thread. Can I repeat: no-one here has attempted to belittle remembrance. I only questioned holding an armed forces day at a football match, and worried that remembrance events were becoming ostentatiously trivialised and militarised. Yesterday's events only strengthened my views. In particular, the War Graves section at half-time showed how far remembrance can be hollowed of meaning. A list of locals whose Wellshill graves were maintained by the War Graves Commission was read out by children, along with the men’s rank and number. They were lauded as soldiers who had paid the ultimate sacrifice and were euphemistically described as ‘the fallen’. We were told we would remember them. But in remembering had anyone bothered to find out the human stories behind their deaths? For a start, half of those whose names were read out never fought. One was popular railway guard and reservist who died of old age in January 1915. Another grave commemorates the life of a retired Major who died peacefully at home in Balhousie Terrace. There was undoubted tragedy in some of the deaths of those named, even if they didn’t occur in battle. One died of natural causes on a training exercise; another was killed when he fell out of a train near Cumbernauld; a third fell off a horse in York. Yet another took ill in London and died in Woolwich hospital. Other deaths were accidents. One poor lad buried at Wellshill was shot in the back by his friend while hunting rabbits near Glenfarg. Perhaps the saddest untold story behind the names read out yesterday was that of a 45-year-old reservist tram conductor. After his shift, a little after 8 o’clock in the evening of Saturday, 17 August 1915, he went home to his wife and family in Brown Street, put his shotgun in his mouth, pulled the trigger and blew the top of his skull off. The trouble is that none of these fascinating, often moving stories were told, because they don’t fit a narrative that demands we only list names and numbers so we can say they all fell bravely for a single cause. But when people are so reduced, are we really remembering the human cost? I got the impression that anyone listening yesterday didn’t think much about it. This is how trivialised our remembrance has become: we seem more impressed by how quiet we were in the minute's silence than anything else. In the end, were those deaths more tragic than, say, the loss of our first-team goalkeeper, John Mulrooney, to a heart attack days after the outbreak of war? His lack of rank alone means his name will never be read out at McDiarmid. And Johnny Cameron’s war death will forever eclipse his moment of greatest bravery: when he rescued a wee girl who’d fallen into the Tay at spate in the dark in late February 1913. Cameron jumped fully-clothed into the river by Perth Bridge to swim to her and save her. But I want to close on a wider point. In offering my views on an Armed Forces Day – which would have passed without comment a few years ago – I’ve insulted no-one, nor been rude to anyone who holds a different view. I’ve attempted to put facts behind my opinions, and asked questions I was open to hear answers to. But I’ve realised most of those I’m discussing it with aren’t listening. In lieu of counter-arguments I, or others who hold similar views, have been called ‘blinkered’, ’idiots’, ’knobs’ and ’assholes’. I’ve been told to hang my head in shame and ‘get [my] attitude sorted out’. I’ve been informed that my comments were ‘offensive’ and was advised to miss the match. This thread hasn’t promoted discussion. Instead – and surely there’s irony here – it’s shown intolerance. Being called ‘assholes’ by a fellow Saints fan – and seeing the names on the list of ‘likes’ attaching themselves to such a nasty comment – strikes a new low. So this will be my last post on the topic – and in this forum. Compassion inflation and intolerance towards differing views will ensure the same Armed Forces spectacle is repeated next year. I won’t making the same argument against it then. I may not have managed to change minds, but I don’t regret for a minute speaking out against it.