Hokey Cokey: Hate Crime

But according to the Catholic Church and some Scottish politicians, singing the popular tune that begins with the words "You put your right hand in, your right hand out," may constitute an act of religious hatred.

A spokesman for the leader of the church in Scotland said the song had disturbing origins.

Critics claim that Puritans composed the song in the 18th century in an attempt to mock the actions and language of priests leading the Latin mass.

Now politicians have urged police to arrest anyone using the song to "taunt" Catholics under legislation designed to prevent incitement to religious hatred.

Leave aside the triviality of the complaint for a moment, the derivation looks very suspect to me.

Doesn\’t the next verse go "you put your right foot in, your right foot out"? And this is a reference to "standing on the square"? To being a Freemason, something that Catholics were not allowed to be (it would breach the obligation not to make secret oaths, not just because the Prods wouldn\’t let them in) and this is what leads to Papists being called "left footers"?

9 thoughts on “Hokey Cokey: Hate Crime”

  1. Watch out. If you dance the Gay Gabot that will be a hate crime too.

    What pisses me off is the mind numbing triviality of this not to mention one of the all time crappyest songs ever written. It sounds like stupid sectarian bollox to me.

  2. “Critics claim that Puritans composed the song in the 18th century in an attempt to mock the actions and language of priests leading the Latin mass.”

    Doesn’t this make it legitimate satire rather than “religious hatred” then? I mean the catholic mass *is* a pretty ridiculous ritual, and surely deserves to be mocked.

  3. If I get up tomorrow and say God has a personal message for me, and then I find a few other people who take me seriously, and then we go around perpetrating a bit of ultra violence to convince a few more people of our wonderfulness, and then we calmed down and tried to influence public policy, it’s a pretty good bet I’d be spending some time in the local psych unit.

    Just because someone did the same a bit longer ago, doesn’t make them saner. So how did they get into a position where what they say is taken seriously – respected even?

    When are we simply going to treat *all* public pronouncements from the Sky Fairy believers with a kind smile and bland disregard or a good dose of mockery?

  4. My theory is that the welcome decline of anti-Roman Catholic bigotry in Scotland has not been matched by a decline in anti-Protestant bigotry. I speak as an atheist from an atheist/Protestant/RC family.

  5. So long as “Sky Fairy believers” are disproportionately represented amongst serious students and teachers of ethics, they will be treated with what Eva regards as excessive respect. This should not, however, excuse them from enormous mockery when they pronounce on macroeconomics or nuclear physics.

  6. I went to Catholic schools and on all dance occassions we danced the Hokey Cokey and all the rest of the standard schoold stuff.

    I, and obviously all the people at school, including teachers and the nearby priests would have had no idea that this was suspected of being anti-catholic.

    Bloody nonsense, although now we will be subjected to the strains of the Hokey Cokey from nearly every Scottish football match, lol.

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