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Rory McIlroy autograph row brought out the serially offended

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Rory McIlroy

Rory McIlroy

Rory McIlroy

It may not seem like it sometimes, but, truly, we live in a democracy in which free speech and tolerance are the cornerstones. How else do you explain the airtime given to the pious prats finding fault on the back of one of the greatest sporting achievements we will ever be fortunate to laud?

Rory McIlroy's 'crime'? Sub-consciously neglecting to sign an autograph at the zenith of his Open golf triumph.

What else would you be thinking about?

The excited lad who broke the ropes clearly meant no harm, but who knew that? Rory was in the zone. Who wouldn't be?

All's well that ends well and there ought not to have been harsh judgements or recrimination, either way.

Strictly speaking, had Rory paused to sign that piece of paper before autographing his scorecard, he could have been disqualified as the rightful Open champion. Imagine the outrage from the same quarters if that had occurred?

Instead, the offended bus did the usual tour of the radio phone-ins. The same opportunist tut-tutters who denounced Darren Clarke for 'over-celebrating' his Open win with a pint or three. Who wouldn't?

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Wait til they see Rory's Twitter feed pictures of him pouring Jägerbombs into the Claret Jug.

This righteous indignation on the radio is less about Rory and more about the attention-seekers phoning in. Democracy, free speech and tolerance are good.

But can we have a radio red button to spare us from the serially offended?

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Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates winning the 2014 Open Championship with his mum at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates winning the 2014 Open Championship with his mum at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

PA

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy kisses the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy kisses the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

PA

Rory McIlroy wins the British Open at Hoylake, Liverpool and the members at Holywood Golf Club celebrate.

Rory McIlroy wins the British Open at Hoylake, Liverpool and the members at Holywood Golf Club celebrate.

Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.

Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.

PA

Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.

Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.

PA

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy chips out of the bunker on the 18thduring day four of the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy chips out of the bunker on the 18thduring day four of the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

PA

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

PA

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy during day four of the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy during day four of the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

PA

Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.

Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.

PA

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy lifts the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy lifts the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

PA

Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.

Fans watch Rory McIlroy win The Open on tv screens at Holywood Golf Course, County Down.

PA

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates with the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates with the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

PA

Terry Carr, Deirdre McGuigan and Julie Carr enjoy champagne at Holywood Golf Club after their very own Rory McIlroy's victory in the Open.
Photo Aidan O'Reilly/Pacemaker Press

Terry Carr, Deirdre McGuigan and Julie Carr enjoy champagne at Holywood Golf Club after their very own Rory McIlroy's victory in the Open. Photo Aidan O'Reilly/Pacemaker Press

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy with the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy with the Claret Jug after winning the 2014 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

PA

Rory McIlroy wins the British Open at Hoylake, Liverpool and the members at Holywood Golf Club celebrate.

Rory McIlroy wins the British Open at Hoylake, Liverpool and the members at Holywood Golf Club celebrate.

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Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy celebrates winning the 2014 Open Championship with his mum at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake.

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