Thursday, April 22, 2010

I like my poppies red, but . . .

I have to say, I’m somewhat nonplussed by the opposition to the White Poppies that Wellington “peace” activists plan to sell “just one day before the annual RSA red poppy day street appeal.”

Sure, these are the munters who regularly interrupt ANZAC Day commemorations at Wellington’s Cenotaph with jeering, flag-burning and naked protests—whose pacifist luminaries were somehow found with guns, including a sniper’s rifle, in the ‘Urewera 16’ police raids--but on the issue of the White Poppies I don’t see what the problem is.

I don't agree with them or their argument, and I'm not likely to buy one of their poppies myself, but it seems to me they're perfectly entitled to sell them in whatever market they can.

And I don't buy either the argument that they're competing for the same market. That the white poppies will somehow reduce the sale of red poppies. Why would it?  Last year the Peace Movement poppies earned them just $5000.  That’s hardly competition—even if they were competing for the same market, which they’re not. They’re selling a different-coloured product representing something very different to the red poppy—and no-one who is even moderately awake is likely to mistake the white poppies’ unwashed patchouli-smelling sellers for an old digger selling “the real thing.”

So I’d suggest that those opposed to the sale of the white poppies simply realise that the sale of the white poppies is an example of precisely the sort of freedom the old diggers were fighting for—the freedom to protest—and reflect that the more opposition to them they foment, the more publicity they give them.

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7 Comments:

Blogger I.M Fletcher said...

I guess it all depends on what the money raised is going to. In this case it is to fund a White Poppy Peace Scholarship which I am dubious about, especially if said scholarship promotes the ideals of Peace Movement Aotearoa.

4/22/2010 12:20:00 pm  
Blogger ZenTiger said...

Interesting reaction Peter.

So why exactly is this different to you, than say, Christians "making a different market offering" for a regular pagan event and offering the market "Christmas Day"?

You certainly get plussed about that :-)

4/22/2010 12:28:00 pm  
Blogger MikeE said...

"So I’d suggest that those opposed to the sale of the white poppies simply realise that the sale of the white poppies is an example of precisely the sort of freedom the old diggers were fighting for—the freedom to protest—and reflect that the more opposition to them they foment, the more publicity they give them."

And with that also comes the freedom of the rest of us to criticise them... ;-)

4/22/2010 12:47:00 pm  
Blogger Shane Pleasance said...

Time for green poppies next.

4/22/2010 02:17:00 pm  
Blogger Mark said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

4/22/2010 02:50:00 pm  
Anonymous White Poppies for Peace said...

Thanks for the analysis, more thoughtful than most of the media who left some facts out of their stories, eg, some RSA members ordering white poppies to have them available alongside red poppies, and some choosing to wear both poppies because they also want to honour and remember all the casualties of war (which includes veterans).

And speaking of facts, Peace Movement Aotearoa was not involved in any of the things listed in the second paragraph.

4/23/2010 07:57:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice perspective. It seems you have ministerial support for your viewpoint from the Associate Defence Minister (http://roy.org.nz/diary/the-war-the-poppies )

Cheers,
Tony

4/23/2010 12:27:00 pm  

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