Well, I’m not re-posting it, at least not without making pointed remarks about how it’s clickbait for a Mafia game Facebook page. Because I’m obviously a heartless bastard, and probably a paedophile to boot.
In the first instance, this.
The Zayn Sheikh / Peppa Pig fiasco has been well-documented, so I don’t think we need to weigh in with anything new. Suffice to say it was a textbook exercise in testing the public’s ability (or inability) to comprehend satire, to the extent that Zayn had to actually go public and admit the video was a hoax – but not before the story had been swallowed hook, line and sinker by over half the internet and a few national newspapers who frankly ought to have known better. This image – which I’d bet came either from Britain First or the EDL – is doing the rounds all over social media, but it’s a hydra, because every time we shoot it down, three more seem to spring up again in its place.
“I’m finding this so depressing today,” said a friend of mine earlier when we were discussing the Facebook timeline where we found this, and the naive, ignorant lady who’d posted it. “She probably didn’t create that meme. Someone who knew exactly what they were doing did. But she spread the lie to hundreds of people who got angry and will have spread it more. Meanwhile she’s free of any comeback. Indeed I doubt she will come back. She seems like a nice lady who loves her children and believes in Reiki healing. But she just added a little more pain to the world. I half subscribe to the theory that us storytellers used to be the moral compass of the tribe – that’s why even today the majority of films and TV dramas celebrate virtues society need to work better. But a place like Facebook is a forum for a new kind of storyteller from the dark timeline.”
“Moral compass is right,” I said. “Except that I don’t think FB is a forum for dark(est?) timeline storytellers. It’s just an extension of who we are, and I’ve said this before. It’s all that playground gossip and bitchiness – people showing off about their new trainers / video games / girlfriends / cars. The rumours and the backbiting. A lot of people say that Facebook has made the world a more selfish place, but I maintain it just gave us a chance to be the people we’d always wanted to be online – except the name-calling is now much worse, because now if you say horrible things about someone else they’re not going to drop your bag in a puddle or stick your head down the toilet.”
Also – ‘Muslims’, not ‘muslims’. And “tvs”, not “tv’s”. Bloody foreigner’s, coming over here, taking our apostrophe’s.
I mean, I don’t get this. I don’t.
It doesn’t strike me as being about equality at all. The reason for gay pride – for any sort of pride – is as a natural response to repression: in other words, being told that you have nothing to be proud about. But I don’t know of any straight people – any at all – who’ve been targeted by the gay community and told that what they’re doing is unnatural, or disgusting, or morally wrong, or will land them in eternal damnation. Perhaps you’ve heard different, of course, but I think if this was happening, we’d know about it.
So this is either an argument founded on utterly false logic, or it’s a guarded way of saying that you’re proud of being straight because it’s the right way forward. In which case it’s homophobic. Either approach, as far as I can see, is wrong.
I just came across this on Facebook.
It was originally posted by a group called Stuff4Sale. I’m not linking to their page because they don’t deserve the publicity. This was the text in their post:
And this was my response.
“You absolute, utter wankers.
Irrespective of the validity (or otherwise) of comments like this (I do happen to think it’s an extremely simple way of looking at an incredibly complicated issue, but most armchair politicians I come across are extremely simple), it is absolutely inexcusable to create and / or circulate a meme that broadcasts a potentially controversial opinion about a topic that has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO DO WITH WHAT YOU SELL OR DO. This isn’t about giving your opinion, it’s about generating traffic (and therefore revenue) by posting a mildly contentious / popular viewpoint (delete as applicable) on a hot topic, and then sticking in a quick plug at the end with ‘PLEASE LIKE OUR PAGE’.
I’m not getting into the rights and wrongs of what you’ve said. That’s for a forum other than Facebook with people who can spell. My issue is with your appalling lapse of taste. Right or wrong, this is the metaphorical equivalent of selling t-shirts at the crucifixion, or producing a Holocaust film and bombarding it with product placement. It’s sickening. Absolutely sickening. And so are you.”
– Tax returns are mandatory: if you want to fight the system, use your vote.
– Enjoying beer or wine (as I am at this very moment) does not make you a drunk driver, provided you leave the car in the garage.
– The occasional McDonalds, enjoyed responsibly and in moderation, will not make your child obese. Long term smoking, however, is statistically likely to kill you.
I will give him the cosmetics.
OK, in the first instance.
I mean, here’s my beef. I know the poppy has become something of a National Front thing. It’s the Daily Mail’s fault. You get one idiotic militant burning a cardboard flower and all hell breaks loose. All of a sudden, there’s an epidemic of anti-white racism. The paedophile-worshipping lunatics are taking over the asylum. They’re all claiming benefits and pleading human rights when we try to deport them. They want to destroy us all. Before you know it the country’s adopted Sharia law and they’re building a bonfire and throwing on copies of the King James.
None of this is actually happening, of course, outside a few isolated cases that are grabbed up by the gutter press and established as the norm. There is no secret plot to destroy our community spirit and force everyone to convert to Islam, any more than there’s a left-wing conspiracy to indoctrinate our children into under-age homosexual relations with the Tatchell brigade. Half of the stories are made up, and forty five per cent are exaggerated. The rest are probably true, but they only make the headlines precisely because of their anomalous nature; it is one thing to report on the idiocy of a minority, but another to tell people that this is a pandemic that is only going to get worse. (A popular phrase, for example, is that “Not all Muslims are terrorists, but all terrorists are Muslims”, which is simply not true.)
The net result of this is that you have a culture where the poppy becomes a symbol of defiance against a supposed hatred that doesn’t actually exist. You burn our poppies? Fine, we’ll wear ’em with pride and dignity and WE DON’T CARE IF YOU’RE OFFENDED. This wouldn’t be a problem except that I’ve not met anyone – seriously, anyone – who was actually offended by the adoption of the poppy as an act of remembrance. I’ve met plenty of people who choose not to do it, but no one who’s ever actually made a fuss about other people doing it.
Perhaps I just walk in the wrong circles. I live in a predominantly WASP community, although we have our share of Eastern Europeans and minorities. I’ve never felt intimidated or marginalised, but from what I gather in my conversations with people online this can happen quite a bit depending on your postcode. So perhaps I have a blinkered view. Nonetheless, it strikes me that to start a war over this is bloody ridiculous, because the whole point of the poppy is to remember those who fought so that we no longer have to.
I don’t wear a poppy, but that’s largely because I never get round to buying one. That’s a democratic right, and has nothing to do with any political stand. It doesn’t mean I’m not thinking about the dead, or observing the two-minute silence. It doesn’t mean I wouldn’t drop a few coppers into a British Legion tin outside Wilkinsons. It’s not about principle. I just don’t do it. Nor will I accept that it’s any sort of ‘duty’ I have. Nor do I accept that you should ‘wear your poppy with pride’, because then it just becomes about beating the Hun, rather than commemorating the dead.
At the same time, and at the other end of the spectrum, all these people complaining about Poppy Facism? Seriously. Grow a spine.