About me
About me

To pin or not to pin? A timely question…


Hold up! Before you read on, please read this...

This post was published more than 12 years ago

I keep old posts on the site because I often enjoy reading old content on other people's sites. Not everything that is old is bad. It can be interesting to see how views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have mellowed and matured.

But given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views might very well have changed in the 12 years since I wrote this post. I have written some very silly things over the years, many of which I find pretty embarrassing today.
  • This post might use language in ways which I would now consider highly inappropriate or offensive.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken; embedded material might not appear properly.

Okay. Consider yourself duly warned. Read on...

As sort of an adjunct to this post, a little more about wearing a poppy on TV.

Jon Snow, on Channel 4 News, won’t (he hasn’t in years):

I do not believe in wearing anything which represents any kind of statement … 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.

Sarah Smith, on More4 News, will:

I agree that newscasters shouldn’t wear all sorts of political or charitable adornments. The news studio is not the place for us to declare our commitment to fighting breast cancer or declaring we want to make poverty history by wearing ribbons or wristbands … But I think poppies are different. They are so ubiquitous for the first 11 days of November that not wearing one makes more of statement than having one on … I know Jon Snow has one on in the office – or in the street. But viewers who don’t see him in real life don’t know that. Many assume he’s taking a stand against militarism or the Iraq war. And so I think if we don’t wear a poppy we raise more questions about our personal beliefs than we do if we pin one on.

I have to say I lean more towards Snow’s point of view. I don’t see the point of institutional edicts, like the BBC’s, that state that all presenters must wear a poppy: Surely that’s no more meaningful than none wearing one. For entertainment presenters, I think it should be a matter of personal choice. But if we’re banning all manner of other symbols for news presenters, then why keep the poppy – its no less a symbol of a personal opinion than a cross, after all.

This 995th post was filed under: Media.

More posts worth reading

What I’ve been reading this month (published 3rd December 2018)

What I’ve been reading this month (published 3rd November 2018)

What I’ve been reading this month (published 6th October 2018)

A sincere apology from me to all of Britain (published 23rd December 2009)

Feelin’ Hot Hot Hot (published 16th July 2003)

Clinical OSCE (published 18th May 2004)

So this is Christmas… (published 22nd December 2007)

Comments and responses

Comment from Omar

by Omar

Comment posted at 16:42 on 1st March 2007.

Hi, all. Nice site…I really like your site ! Good job man.+

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