“War on Christmas” Hysteria: A Dispatch from the British Front

 

Bill O’Reilly and WorldNetDaily have nothing on the UK tabloids. From Private Eye magazine (1199, p.6), helpfully transcribed by blog Botherer:

In early December, Healey Primary School in Rochdale sent a note home to parents of 4 to 7-year-old pupils: “Please could parents send just one Christmas card to the whole class rather than asking school for a whole class name list. This is to avoid tears and tantrums which often occur when Christmas cards are distributed.”

The school was worried about the cost to poorer parents and the feelings of children who are left out. However, despite the fact that the school will be holding several Christmas-themed events, including a carol service, the guidance about cards was reported in the media as “school bans Christmas cards” in the name of “political correctness gone mad” (the descriptor “gone mad” is often added to the phrase “political correctness” by British polemicists):

“Furious parents and campaigners last night slammed the politically correct brigade for spoiling the true meaning of Christmas,” roared the Express. “Festive cards are being banned in schools… the season of goodwill is being ruined by Scrooge-like officials fearful of offending other faiths or worried about health and safety rules.” Its sister paper the Daily Star, meanwhile, kept up its own tradition of ignoring all the facts with the front-page headline: “Ban on Christmas cards in case they upset Muslims!”

A 2004 BBC News profile of Star and Express owner Richard “Dirty” Desmond can be seen here.

One Response

  1. […] tabloid which likes to whip up anti-Muslim sentiment with dubious reporting (I blogged on one story here). Alas, it’s the only source available on this particular subject. One piece  […]

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