British tabloid The Daily Star has slammed several British soaps because of a lack of poppies on-screen.
The paper has slammed Coronation Street, Emmerdale and Hollyoaks for their poor poppy representation; claiming they had not featured a single poppy at the time of the story’s publication. The only soap character to have worn a poppy up till 8 November was Peggy Mitchell (Barbara Windsor) on EastEnders, it claims.
Poppies are worn in the lead up to Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day as a mark of respect and remembrance for all those who had died in conflict. The wearing of one is entirely voluntary, however, Ed Abrams, spokesperson for the English Democrats has hit out at the soaps.
“It’s disgraceful. Millions of people watch these soap operas every night of the week and they should reflect reality, it should be compulsory that the characters wear a poppy and the actor should also want to, out of respect for people who gave their lives. They should be setting an example.” – Ed Abrams
Emmerdale hit back at the criticism with: “We have characters wearing poppies in the next few episodes including Turner, Ashley, Terry, Edna and Brenda. We do it every year – last year we also had a storyline with all the characters gathered at the memorial outside the church.”
Jon Snow, news anchor for Channel Four News, hit out at “poppy-fascism” last year and defended his decision not to wear one on-air. Snow also said, in the same blog, that he refuses to wear any kind of symbols have could reflect the opinions he has.
“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. Additionally there is a rather unpleasant breed of poppy fascism out there – ‘he damned well must wear a poppy!’ Well I do, in my private life, but I am not going to wear it or any other symbol on air.” – Jon Snow