Thursday, 24 April 2008

Pubs Ban English People, Apparently

Seeing as Septic Isle has taken a few days break from savaging the press, I thought I'd better have a go. Especially when I saw this piece of garbage, brought to us by that most august of publications, the Daily Star. While never the most serious of newspapers, it did at least used to have Judge Dredd and Beau Peep to keep us amused. Even Linda Duff's atrocious celebrity column used to be worth a laugh for the unintentionally hilarious recycling of weeks-old stories. But since Richard Desmond got his hands on it, if anything the content has gotten worse. Staff cutbacks has seen it transform into a pure soft core porn rag, beaten only in the gratuity stakes by the Daily Sport. A sample of the last week's headlines are typical of its fare - 'Becks Lover to Tell All', 'Chanelle Big Bro Sex Tape Leaked' and 'Mucca's '£10k Lesbian Romp''. Each front page tastefully adorned by scantily-clad young women, of course.

As for the stories themselves, they're unbelievably poor. I forget the amount of times I've chuckled when this self-proclaimed 'Official Big Brother' newspaper has acquitted itself with three day-old "exclusives" long-since reported in The Sun and The Mirror. Naturally, these exclusives usually revolve around alleged sexy goings-on between house mates. In short, The Star reads as if it was written by embarrassing and slightly pervy middle-aged dads trying to be down with da yoof. It's pathetic.

There is another side to The Star too. Being trashy and sexist is not enough. Like its more "respectable" cousin, The Express, it is incredibly xenophobic. It has no problem stirring the pot of national resentment on a slow celebrity news day, such is the case today. Here's their front page article in full:
......but it's ok if you are a Pole

Pubs banned English drinkers from marking St George’s Day with a pint yesterday but kept their doors open for Polish immigrants.

The Punch And Judy pub in Covent Garden, central London, barred anyone wearing the cross of St George, the English flag. Even a lapel badge was enough for a reveller to be shown the door.

In London, barred drinker Lisa Rathbone, 29, fumed: “We are not thugs, we have come out to celebrate St George’s Day and have a normal drink.

“Who the hell’s country is this now?”

A spokesman for Spirit Group, which owns the Punch And Judy, said: “We had problems last year.

“We stopped people coming in to protect the safety of other drinkers. This wasn’t intended to offend anyone.”

A similar ban sparked a riot in Boston, Lincs – where a quarter of the population now are immigrants – after a pub put up a sign saying: “No English.”

Shops were looted, a police car was torched and windows smashed by enraged yobs.

Rioters caused £1million damage in Boston after the “No English” sign was put up at a pub in the town after England lost 2-1 to France at Euro 2004.
Hold on a moment here. We're talking about one pub, The Punch and Judy, in London. And the people who were banned from entering were those wearing the cross of St. George. So can we not say the headline was a little misleading? English drinkers were as welcome to The Punch and Judy as Poles, Irish, Romanians, Stokies ...

And then there is the second part of the article. It informs us a riot took place in Boston, so enraged were the local citizenry after a pub banned English people. Hang on, it actually turns out The Star is referring to events that took place FOUR YEARS AGO, while implying it took place yesterday! Surely there must be some mistake? I've checked the BBC North West and indeed, short of a cover up, nothing appeared to have happened in Boston at all.

So what we have here is a story about a single pub banning drinkers decked out in St George regalia. But fed through The Star's news filter it becomes an inflammatory piece inciting hostility toward Poles and implying a politically correct conspiracy against plain normal English folk. What a load of hateful cobblers.

The Star stands as a the indictment against trashy tabloid journalism. The sooner the media ceases to be the plaything of vile, right wing press barons, the better.


Charlie Marks said...

What is striking about the front cover is the way women are depicted - still! - in tabloid newspapers not so much as individuals but as wenches (Gemma's arse, Billy's bump) or witches (Amy inebriated).

Nick said...

Boston is not the North West, so that's why you might have found it difficult. It's in South Lincolnshire, and experienced rioting in 2004 which was allegedly organised by BNP sympathisers.

Phil BC said...

Duh, my bad.

Darren said...

The pic accompanying the piece suggests that you're going for Splintered Sunrise's readership. ;-)

PS - I'm nicking your meme. Too good to miss.

Phil BC said...

What can I say, Darren. The competition for readership's a tough one. If it means I have to start doing features on Maddie and Princess Di, so be it.

Anonymous said...

I cringe whenever I see that wretched little flag as well. Badges, yuk.

Has this driven you to contemplate exile Phil? Are you planing to leave England behind? I mean using the fat American toad of a past participle, 'gotten'.. Instead of got (conjugation: get, got, got).

Does some Professorship in post-Baudrillian simulacra-fetishism at Houndstown California beckon? I await your on-line courses in the deontological semiotics of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.


Phil BC said...

In a word, no. However bad things are in Blighty, all I have to do is look across the pond and despair at how things are so much worse for the left over there ...

Madam Miaow said...

I see Darren has beaten me to the observation that you are turning into Splinty.

Wossis meme, then?

Hey, AC, don't knock Buffy. She's a fine role model for any working class gal. And well worth the PhD time.

Phil BC said...

Wot is this?

I post up two (two!) pictures of women showing a bit of flesh, and all of a sudden I'm competing with Splinty for the crown of the lefty Benny Hill. It's political correctness gone mad! ;)