About three years ago, I went to an awards event at a local authority. There were local councillors there, including the cabinet member with responsibility for looked after children and care leavers. That cabinet member stood up and said to the care leavers there that the councillors were their corporate parents.
Wearing a poppy is, for some, a nice gesture. But if it's done mindlessly - poppies handed out on an armband as the players wait in the tunnel, just for show, just so they can be seen to be wearing one without the accompanying donation - it's essentially an empty gesture. As empty as the outrage over the ban.
Although I have to say, after having lived in Berlin for eight months, this isn't something that I have personally noticed. I have met a lot of lovely Berliners and of course some not-so-lovely ones. So just putting it out there, Berliners are no more or less rude than Londoners, I would know, being the overly sensitive soul that I am.
All things considered, I am no longer sure I want to stay. The only consideration keeping me here is last year's £18,000 university fee - it would really be a waste not to graduate. I can only hope that as Britons are confronted by a longer non-EU queue at Charles de-Gaulle's airport and the need to apply for a visa for a weekend break in Stockholm, these attitudes will change.
For many young people, self-identifying themselves in an unfriendly atmosphere swirls them into a state of disarray. Places for them to go, meet similar people and to feel comfortable are still massively important. In schools and universities, LGBT clubs and societies exist as a good network. If you are gay and don't enjoy going to gay clubs, it can be really hard to meet other gay people...
If Mourinho can rectify what was Ferguson's greatest mistake at Manchester United, he can save the season before it starts. The pill of a potentially controversial and trophyless year is far easier to swallow when accompanied by the sugary return of a prodigal son. And not just any prodigal son, but one that could quite conceivably go on to become the best player in the world.