Lots of people in the UK wear poppies to commemorate those who've died in wars and there's nothing wrong with that. Similarly there's nothing wrong with those who choose not to wear a poppy either. It doesnt mean they don't respect or care about British soldiers who have lost their lives in wars - it means they don't feel they have to go about with a plastic flower somewhere on their clothing to show it. In recent times however the sincere and voluntary act of wearing a poppy at this time of year has morphed into something else - something ugly and almost fascist in its intolerance towards anyone who deviates from poppy wearing.
Furthermore might it not be a good idea to not send people to die in wars in the first place? Indeed the second world war aside - a war against the terrifying evil that was Nazism and which had to be fought - i cant think of a single war the British have been involved in which has been necessary or couldn't have been resolved by other means. I certainly include the first world war in that list of unnecessary conflicts - a disastrous and pointless War brought about by a falling out between Europe's corrupt ruling classes and fought by clueless aristocratic generals indifferent to the deaths of their largely working class soldiers.
But unfortunately FIFA's hair brained inflexibility over the matter of 'symbol' wearing by national teams has this week resulted in the Wales football team targeted for abuse by the poppy fascists http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/katie-hopkins-criticised-wales-football-12162346.
The hypocrisy involved in all of this is simply breathtaking - the UK's home nations have played football matches on or near Armistice day without wearing poppies on numerous occasions before and there hasnt been a murmur of protest. Course amid all the hullabaloo and the abuse currently being directed at the Wales team by the likes of Hopkins and right wing hacks the tribute the Welsh FA are in fact planning before their game this weekend seems to have been missed http://www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/spectacular-poppy-gesture-wales-make-12156753.
One other point - i wonder how those currently lambasting the Wales team would react if England met Argentina in the next world cup and the Argentinian team wanted to wear something on their shirt to commemorate the hundreds of young Argentinian conscripts drowned when Margaret Thatcher gave the order to sink the Belgrano? I strongly suspect the likes of Hopkins and the Daily Blackshirt.....er i mean Mail ....would be singing a different tune then.
But the Welsh football team should perhaps consider it a badge of honour that they are the latest victims of Hopkins bile - anyone who urges the machine gunning of drowning child migrants surely ceased to be a member of the human race long ago http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/katie-hopkins-when-is-enough-enough-10186490.html.
Finally - and i thought it was a fitting way to end this post - if you watched telly in Britain in the 80s chances are you would have been a fan of the comedy series Blackadder and chances are you would have been touched by the shows profoundly moving last scene. In a few short minutes - courtesy of some brilliant script writing by Ben Elton - it managed to capture the sheer insanity of much of what was supposed to be 'the war to end all wars' and the terrible human cost involved.