England allowed to play with Poppies somewhere on their shirts
FIFA have pulled their ban on England wearing poppies somewhere on their shirts. But it’s a hollow gesture on all sides now. Do the England players care? No. It’s just become a tool men like David Cameron to get public opinion on their side.
What does the poppy represent? It’s a way of remembering the people who died in World Wars One and Two. It is also a way of remembering non-conscripted soldiers who have died in other wars, which is more controversial.
Whether wearing a poppy is important or not – whether that appeal is where you want your money to go or not – the England shirt discussion was never about that. To begin with it was about FIFA misunderstanding a gesture. Then it became a chance for points scoring by men like Cameron who called the ban “an appalling decision.” Even for people who support that sentiment, the fact that a man in elected office has said it has to subvert its meaning: it’s become a cynical attempt to grab votes.
The irony? A politician coming out and declaring that poppies are not a political issue.
So what do we have?
We have hollow sentiment. Which sounds about right for England, a team that is marked on how loudly it sings the national anthem.