Newsreader Jon Snow condemns 'poppy fascism'

By staff writers
November 9, 2006

Newsreader Jon Snow condemns 'poppy fascism'

-09/11/06

Channel 4 newsreader Jon Snow has waded into the debate about the requirement of figures in public life to wear poppies, by saying he does not wear a poppy out of principle when presenting the news.

Snow, who has had complaints from viewers about his decision not to wear the emblem, claimed that the pressure on news-readers to wear the Remembrance Day emblem was "poppy fascism".

The same point was made by Ekklesia in a press release yesterday. The think tank suggested that public figures should have the option of wearing a white poppy instead of the red one, or even both together without a storm of protest.

In radio and television interviews for Sky, the BBC and independent media today, Ekklesia's director Jonathan Bartley pointed out that if, as the British Legion suggest, soldiers fought wars to preserve our freedom, then such freedoms also extended to choices about which poppy to wear.

This was a point also made by spokespeople for the British Legion today.

Jon Snow, who made his comments on a Channel 4 blogsite, said: "I am begged to wear an Aids Ribbon, a breast cancer ribbon, a Marie Curie flower... You name it, from the Red Cross to the RNIB, they send me stuff to wear to raise awareness, and I don't. And in those terms, and those terms alone, I do not and will not wear a poppy.

"Additionally there is a rather unpleasant breed of poppy fascism out there - 'he damned well must wear a poppy!' Well I do, in my private life, but I am not going to wear it or any other symbol on air."

See also:
Proper debate at about war 'honours those who have died'09/11/06;Violent solutions not 'normal' but mythic, says theologian 09/11/06; Challenge to political correctness of the poppy 09/11/06; Canadian war veterans attack peace activists over white poppies 08/11/06; Controversy over sale of white poppies. More on the roots of the "myth of redemptive violence" here. Walter Wink is Professor of Biblical Interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary in New York City, USA. His books may be purchased at Metanoia Books. To buy white poppies: http://www.whitepoppy.org/; British Legion appeal: http://www.poppy.org.uk/givemoney.cfm

Newsreader Jon Snow condemns 'poppy fascism'

-09/11/06

Channel 4 newsreader Jon Snow has waded into the debate about the requirement of figures in public life to wear poppies, by saying he does not wear a poppy out of principle when presenting the news.

Snow, who has had complaints from viewers about his decision not to wear the emblem, claimed that the pressure on news-readers to wear the Remembrance Day emblem was "poppy fascism".

The same point was made by Ekklesia in a press release yesterday. The think tank suggested that public figures should have the option of wearing a white poppy instead of the red one, or even both together without a storm of protest.

In radio and television interviews for Sky, the BBC and independent media today, Ekklesia's director Jonathan Bartley pointed out that if, as the British Legion suggest, soldiers fought wars to preserve our freedom, then such freedoms also extended to choices about which poppy to wear.

This was a point also made by spokespeople for the British Legion today.

Jon Snow, who made his comments on a Channel 4 blogsite, said: "I am begged to wear an Aids Ribbon, a breast cancer ribbon, a Marie Curie flower... You name it, from the Red Cross to the RNIB, they send me stuff to wear to raise awareness, and I don't. And in those terms, and those terms alone, I do not and will not wear a poppy.

"Additionally there is a rather unpleasant breed of poppy fascism out there - 'he damned well must wear a poppy!' Well I do, in my private life, but I am not going to wear it or any other symbol on air."

See also:
Proper debate at about war 'honours those who have died'09/11/06;Violent solutions not 'normal' but mythic, says theologian 09/11/06; Challenge to political correctness of the poppy 09/11/06; Canadian war veterans attack peace activists over white poppies 08/11/06; Controversy over sale of white poppies. More on the roots of the "myth of redemptive violence" here. Walter Wink is Professor of Biblical Interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary in New York City, USA. His books may be purchased at Metanoia Books. To buy white poppies: http://www.whitepoppy.org/; British Legion appeal: http://www.poppy.org.uk/givemoney.cfm

Although the views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Ekklesia, the article may reflect Ekklesia's values. If you use Ekklesia's news briefings please consider making a donation to sponsor Ekklesia's work here.