By Kevin Murphy
Legendary Meath forward Colm O’Rourke has called for legal proceedings to be brought against anyone who engages in social media abuse.
The Sunday Game pundit was reacting to the serious abuse his nephew Paddy O’Rourke received following his sending off for Meath last Sunday.
Although Westmeath’s first ever victory over the Royals lit up the Championship the focus has now switched to the growing problem of online abuse.
Speaking on Drivetime on RTE Radio One, O’Rourke slammed the behaviour of these trolls as “disgusting”.
“The defeat hasn’t gone down well in the county. The abuse on twitter of some players, including my nephew Patrick in particular, is just disgraceful.
“I think it’s time at this stage when the law of the land must apply in these cases when people are saying things an incitement to violence or an incitement to hatred.
“The Gardaí need to intervene in these sort of things, people are getting away with far too much with this online abuse.”
Meath suffered a second half meltdown against Westmeath and now face Tyrone in the qualifiers away in Omagh.
Tyrone star Sean Cavanagh has condemned the online abuse and has come out in support of his International Rules team mate O’Rourke.
“Paddy is a good lad, he’s a big fella who hasn’t a bad bone in his body," Cavanagh said in the Irish Star.
“One of the reasons that I don’t go on is that I don’t want to give people the opportunity to abuse me.
“The authorities haven’t caught up with it yet and it could be years down the line that someone cops on to how to police social media. “