Let’s be clear about what Charles Green, the Rangers CEO, was trying to say in his ludicrous comments about having a “Paki friend” and having once played alongside a “darkie” striker.

Green was interviewed last weekend and, in highly unfortunate remarks, came over as some kind of cross between Alf Garnett and Bernard Manning. He actually sounded as if he had travelled in a time-machine straight from 1972.

Green confessed that he referred to Imran Ahmad, his business partner at Rangers, as “my Paki friend”. Warming to his theme, he also recalled that, when he was a footballer with Worksop Town, there had been another striker on the club’s books called “Darkie” Johnson.

It was bad enough, in today’s climate, hearing a leading executive of a major Scottish football club talking like this. But worse was the actual point that Green was trying to make.

He appeared to assert that he detests modern society’s political correctness and the way it prohibits such language. To Green, it’s all a bit of a shame that in today’s world you cannot go about referring to “Pakis” or “Darkies”.

“You have all these do-gooders and puritanical people saying you cannot say that anymore,” Green complained.

Yes, Charles, and damn right we do.

This stuff has proved to be one more embarrassment to Rangers in recent days. Even worse, when the campaign group Show Racism The Red Card publicly lamented Green’s remarks, he compounded his idiocy by bleating about their scolding of him.

I am actually prepared to give Green the benefit of the doubt over some of this. He doesn’t believe he is a racist. He doesn’t intend to be one. He says that he deplores any such prejudice. “Where I come from,” he added, “it made no difference if you were black, white, Protestant, Catholic…”

Green might not be a racist at all - the problem he has is that he sounds like one.

This kind of talk is the “casual racism” of many who, while claiming that “white or black makes no difference to me”, nonetheless enjoy the so-called banter of “darkie” and “Paki” etc. It is abysmal stuff.

If skin colour or ethnicity makes no difference to Charles Green, why refer to anyone as “a Paki” in the first place? It isn’t just embarrassing - not that Green can see that - but it undermines everything else he says about deploring bigotry.

Green’s comments have actually reminded me of an old Scottish football writer of years past who, when drink went down his throat, suddenly liked nothing better than to talk of “darkies” and “wogs”.

This was around the early 1990s, just at that point when decent society was learning to be more responsible in its use of language. I remember watching this well-known football figure mouthing off like this and thinking: “What a prick you sound.”

It has been a strange saga around Green, given the stupidity of what he said. Can you imagine the outcry - rightly - if either Ally McCoist or Neil Lennon had come out with this stuff? Any right-minded football club today would consider such language by a player or manager as a potential sacking offence.

Ironically, Lennon is currently up on an SFA disrepute charge for far less insidious language - caught by a TV microphone - towards Jim Goodwin of St Mirren.

There is much that Charles Green has done at Rangers that deserves admiration. He stepped into an Ibrox fire where others feared to tred. He pushed through a successful - though hardly spectacular - flotation of the club on the stock market.

Green also has likeable qualities: he is bullish and engaging, and his blunt talking is often entertaining, if sometimes slightly daft.

But he has also made a fool of himself with this racist claptrap. Even worse, he then looked almost oblivious at the need to apologise for it.

Charles Green has severely embarrassed Rangers with his worldview.