I no longer wear a poppy on my lapel, any more than I wear my heart on my sleeve. It does not mean I don’t care, nor that I don’t care to remember, but I am angry that this opiate poppy of the masses has become a platitude. When the politicians can stand at the Cenotaph with their sad faces and scarlet poppies, who just weeks ago shook hands all round at an international arms fair, how can ‘wearing a poppy’ mean anything? I remember that people lose lives and minds and limbs in wars their politicians tell them to fight, that families are torn apart, that my son’s best friend lives with the fear that daddy might not come home again. And I look at the poppy on the PM’s lapel, and I do see blood, but it isn’t his. The poppy was supposed to make us remember, but I think it’s helping us to forget. And if seeing me daring not to wear one makes someone sputter in outrage, then good. Remember what it stands for now?
November 10, 2013
Why I won’t wear my poppy with pride any more