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Red Road refugees are spared the worst, but damage to Glasgow's reputation is done

So the Red Road flats won't be blown up during the Commonwealth Games after all.

A concern over safety is the explanation for the turnabout. Even as a cover story, the admission that no risk assessment was made suggests astonishing incompetence.

Blowing up five massive structures at a precise moment, within a 15-second window, without mishap or injury, before hundreds of millions of viewers all over the world. What could possibly have gone wrong?

One is filled with trepidation about the other ideas for the opening ceremony. Could we have some early information so new petition organisers can get themselves sorted?

I suspect the real reason for the climbdown was the belated, but nevertheless welcome, recognition of the dubious morality of the proposed 'poverty porn' spectacle and the potential harm it could do to Glasgow's standing. It's for those reasons I was one of the 17,000 who signed Carolyn Leckie's petition.

Sadly, I think that the city's reputation for kindness and generosity has already been damaged, not least because of the treatment of the forgotten players in this farce - the most deprived Red Road community of all, the 250 or so asylum seekers housed there.

A plan to blow up all the blocks during the opening ceremony was a very bad and thoughtless idea. Planning to blow up all except one - the one housing the asylum seekers - was doubly wrong-headed and outrageously insensitive.

The blocks are to be demolished because they are unfit for human habitation - except, apparently, for refugees. Maybe they'll rename the remaining building 'District 9' after that sci-fi film about aliens on earth forced into slum ghettos.

The organisers said that blowing up the flats would show the world how Glasgow is moving forward from the past into a bright modernity. Maybe the new, shining Glasgow isn't for the likes of asylum seekers?

To rub salt into their situation, the refugees housed in the spared block were to be forced to evacuate their homes during the opening ceremony while the explosions took place. To think how we all tut-tut at those stories from nasty, faraway places where the inconveniently poor and ragged are hidden away when foreign dignitaries come to visit.

No thought even now seems to have been given to what life in the surviving block is going to be like during and after the demolitions.

When I first heard of the proposed plans, I thought that if it's explosions the organisers want, why not dynamite some of the statues in George Square?

Minimum risk, no poverty porn and many of those honoured individuals - unlike the asylum seekers - have no connection with the city.

The Red Road asylum seekers don't appear to have been offered even a fish supper as compensation for all the inconvenience that was to be inflicted on them. At the very least, they might have been given VIP tickets to attend the opening ceremony and access to all the big wigs' lavish hospitality. Maybe this could still be done as a gesture of apology?

Dark skins, unfamiliar languages and exotic names - they wouldn't be out of place at the Commonwealth Games, would they?

It's good news that the games' organisers have changed their minds but, unfortunately, not before they have given a whole new meaning to the saying that the warmth of a Glasgow welcome would blow you away.

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