Today's headline is 'UP YOURS' and on their website they have 'England expects flags'. It's rubbish on so many levels.
What I said about the 'controversy' around flying the flag in my last post counts double for this crappy article. And I hate the shouty website and the way it gives each sentence its own little paragraph to make it easily digestible for the barely literate. From the article:
And nothing gets small-minded killjoys on their high horses quite like signs of national pride.Who are these petty jobsworths who brand people as racist and think patriotism is a dirty word? They're the people I spoke about in my last post. The ones who never called anyone racist. Or said anything about patriotism. Plus one new one:
The sight of English flags proudly fluttering all around the country ahead of this month’s World Cup has got the petty jobsworths up in arms.
They brand anyone who dares to show their love for our country as racist — and sneer at anyone who takes pride in being English.
We have news for them. Patriotism is NOT a dirty word.
Killjoys at cable giant NTL are among the latest party-poopers — ordering van drivers and subcontractors to tear down their flags in case they offend Muslims.Now, where did the people at NTL say van drivers and contractors should tear down their flags because they might offend Muslims? You'll notice that bit's not in the quote from the company - which is probably because it's made up. If anyone at NTL had actually said that, why didn't the Sun quote it directly?
One shocked driver said: “If we’re seen with any flags on our vans we’ll be given a written warning.”
The company insisted: “We work in many multicultural areas and in different countries within Britain so we want to maintain a professional image and a sense of impartiality.”
It was a driver who said they'd get a written warning, and not the company itself, which means the driver could have it wrong. He might not, but journalists are supposed to do this crazy thing called 'fact checking' to find out. There is a big difference between the company saying, "we'd rather you didn't display England flags," and "you'll be punished if you display an England flag." So you'd think a reporter might ask the people who make the rules if they'd made this one.
The other thing is that NTL have said they want to remain impartial about football and don't want to look like the company supports one specific team. You can disagree with their line all you like, but it's got precisely sod all to do with racism or offending Muslims.
CONSTRUCTION WORKERS at Heathrow’s Terminal 5. Bosses claim St George crosses pose a health and safety risk — because the flags might get caught in the wind and fly on to a runway.No, bosses claim big, flappy bits of material pose a health and safety risk, you twat.
CABBIES in Cheltenham, Gloucs, who have been threatened with having licences revoked. The council claims flags are dangerous since they could fall off — a view now backed by Hampshire Police.No, Cheltenham council say it's a safety issue because not having flags help people differentiate between genuine cabbies and unlicensed ones. Disagree with that as much as you like, but don't just make shit up. And check out the clumsy way the two organisations are squashed together to create a fake impression of a connection.
They want a blitz on drivers flying “unsafe” flags, claiming they could frighten horses and strike pedestrians.Do they? A 'blitz'? Saying that drivers whose flags fly off and hit people will be prosecuted counts as 'a blitz' does it? Presumably every police force in the country want a blitz on people having hands. You know, because if they punch someone in the face they'll be prosecuted.
FIREMEN in Barking, East London — barred from hoisting the flag at their station. The ruling was imposed despite Barking Mosque Secretary Ashfaq Siddique declaring: “We’re not offended — it’s a national flag!”They were stopped (if they actually were - all we know is that 'a spokesman' said they were discussing the issue with the Station) because they're not allowed to fly flags without permission. Not because of Muslims. The opinion of the local Mosque has bugger all to do with anything.
TESCO also got in on the act by banning its lorry drivers from flying the flag — although the supermarket giant later backtracked. Yesterday Massoud Shadjareh, leader of the Islamic Human Rights Commission, claimed English or British flags still conjure images of racism and the British National Party.What has the leader of the Islamic Human Rights Commission got to do with Tesco making their original decision days before the guy said anything? Fuck all, that's what. Mentioning the two in the same paragraph is just a cynical ploy by whoever bashed out this piece of rubbish with their fists to connect actual flag bans (for whatever reason) with Muslims.
That's where this article begins to look a bit nasty, rather than just boneheaded. Some of the bans here are incorrectly connected to Muslims - no, scratch that - every isntance where some connection between a specific ban and Muslims is made, it's most likely a false one. That doesn't exactly create a nice impression of Muslims, does it? Even if the article says, 'Most of the country’s Muslims are happy to get behind the flag — although there are some who never will.' Yeah, and I'm not racist, but . . .
This article has the opposite effect on me to the one it intends. Instead of making me want to display a flag in defiance of small minded lefties and Muslims, it makes me not want to display one, in case people think I really believe I'm doing it in defiance of small minded lefties and Muslims. And I do wear St George Cross t-shirts and stuff during big tournaments like the World Cup. The only thing that would discourage me is not that I believe people would think I'm racist, but that people would think I'm the sort of cretin that believes this clumsy pretend conspiracy theory - the sort of person that thinks that joining in with everyone else is actually an act of rebellion.
If you give a million monkeys a million typewriters and an infinite amount of time, they'd eventually type out the complete works of Shakespeare by fluke. If you gave one monkey a crayon and a bit of paper he'd come out with a better article than this. Even if it came out spattered with monkey cack.