|The Poppy on England jacket|
After a wave of media reportage on the issue, British Prime Minister David Cameron has also issued a scathing attack on FIFA after the world football governing body remained steadfast in its decision to prohibit the English national team from wearing poppies on their shirts for the upcoming game against Spain.
“This seems outrageous. The idea that wearing a poppy to remember those who have given their lives for our freedom is a political act is absurd. Wearing a poppy is an act of huge respect and national pride. I hope that FIFA will reconsider.”
Wow. What rhetorical nonsense. Cameron fails to see the irony of a politician playing down the political symbolism of the poppy. Downplaying politics in international sport is in itself futile, since international sport is inherently political, nations representing states and whatnot.
Wearing the poppy might be an act of respect to some, but it also glorifies war in an overtly triumphalist manner. Creating such a bluster over the manner is unneccessary and counterproductive. A cynic might say it demonstrates the obstinacy of the English FA.
Calm down lads, it’s only a poppy. You can pay your respects in other, less ostentatious ways.
You might even have a bit of class.