"ARMED cops patrolling Heathrow Airport have been banned from wearing tiny Union Jack badges in support of British troops.Being ashamed of the flag is nothing new in America: in some circles, it's been all the rage for decades: so The United Kingdom isn't alone.
"Top brass claimed the tie-pin badges - which cost £1 with proceeds going to the Help for Heroes charity - were OFFENSIVE.
"But one officer asked: 'How can the Union Jack be offensive?
" 'This ruling is even more absurd coming this weekend on the 65th anniversary of the D-Day landings.
" 'We must be the only country ashamed to display our national flag.'..." (The Sun)
A Digression: Quotes Without SourcesThe blog post at Creative Minority Report ran that quote, citing another blog which didn't give a source, as far as I could tell. A little digging turned up what I'm pretty sure is the original article, in The Sun, June 8, 2009.
Batty Brits Think Union Jack Offensive - So What?The "my country, wrong or worse" attitude is nothing new here in America. One way to seem sophisticated over here is to act as though Frank Burns, of M*A*S*H, is a typical conservative American, and discuss how America is to blame for the global economic downturn, flooding in Bangladesh, and the Maunder Minimum.
And, either not display the American flag at all, or fly it upside-down, or with alternative designs. Burning the flag seems to have gone out of fashion of late: but that could change again.
I'm not that 'sophisticated.' I like living in a country where I can express views that don't necessarily conform to the dominant culture's view.
I think I see where that attitude toward the flag may have come from in America. When I was growing up, the flag was used quite a bit by organizations like the VFW and American Legion. And, by people with (in my view) narrowly nationalistic views.
But, again in America, the flag isn't - or shouldn't be - an emblem for one particular point of view. It's the flag of America, a country where people are allowed to express dissenting opinions, and protest against the armed forces who sacrifice to maintain the right to protest.
The United Kingdom has a history of freedom of speech, too, and it troubles me to see that the weirdly hypertrophied concern for the feelings of a sensitive few which has developed in America seems to be active in the U.K. as well.
- "Department of Homeland Security No Longer Fears American Veterans?"
(May 14, 2009)
- "Genocide! Racism! Down With Columbus Day!!"
(April 8, 2009)
- " 'America Sucks' - Binghamton, New York, Bullies, and 'Little Eichmanns' "
(April 4, 2009)
- "Professor Ward Churchill is Back: A Glorious Victory for Academic Freedom, Tenure, and the American Academic Way"
(April 3, 2009)
- "Sounds of Silence: 2009"
(March 31, 2009)
- "Carville, Limbaugh, 9/11, Obama, and Objectivity in the News"
(March 11, 2009)
- "CCSU Students Talk About Guns: Naturally, Their Professor Called the Police"
(March 4, 2009)
- "Turkey, the Ottoman Empire, Dead Armenians, and Learning from Mistakes"
(February 28, 2009)
- "Honor Killing, Muzzammil Hassan and Aasiya, Protecting Feelings,and Common Sense"
(February 20, 2009)
- "Goodbye Quagmire, Hello Quicksand: Champions of Relevance Catch Up"
(January 5, 2009)
- "President-Elect Obama's Problem With Left-Wing Bloggers"
(December 22, 2008)
- "The New York Times Banned in China"
(December 20, 2008)
- "Free Speech, Ahmed Abdellatif Sherif Mohamed, Campus Activists, and America's Future"
(December 18, 2008)
- "William Felkner vs. College Conformity: Traditional Information Gatekeepers Face Another Challenge"
(December 16, 2008)
- "Ayman al-Zawahri's Islam and American Culture: Common Ground, Almost"
(November 28, 2008)
- "LittleBigPlanet PlayStation Game Recalled to Avoid Sunni Snit"
(October 21, 2008)
- "The Sign Says 'Obama Half-Breed Muslin' - Freedom of Speech, Politics, Spelling, and Race"
(October 1, 2008)
- "More Academic Freedom, American Style?"
(September 22, 2008)
- "Another Teacher in Trouble in a Muslim Country"
(September 14, 2008)
- " 'Self-Satisfied Ignorance?' Eucharist, Quran, and Atheist Book Trashed"
(August 5, 2008)
- "Islam in the Information Age: Afghan Journalist Charged with Blasphemy"
(July 30, 2008)
- "Famous People Say America Must Lead"
(September 23, 2008)
- "Haditha, Iraq; My Lai, Vietnam: This Isn't the Good Old Days"
(July 13, 2008)
- "United States of America: 232 Years in the Freedom Business"
(July 3, 2008)
- "America, Iran, Freedom of Speech, Censorship: Be Careful What You Wish For"
(June 22, 2008)
- "Union Jack Banned at Heathrow"
Creative Minority Report (June 12, 2009)
- " 'Soldier' badge is banned"
The Sun (June 8, 2009)
A tip of the hat to fatherschnippel, for the heads-up on the blog post.