I don't buy newspapers. Sure, I read news sometimes, probably not enough, but I certainly don't use individual publications as my sole source of news, as there's a long history of spin and malice that I can't bring myself to support. Sometimes I may find a copy of The Sun, and peruse it to chuckle and despair at how they'll exploit the most irrelevant facts and figures to inform us that foreigners and benefits claimants are destroying the country. But today I didn't have to seek one out, as a copy was dropped through my door, much like it was dropped through the letterbox of 22 million homes. this is a historic newspaper issue in order to commemorate the start of the World Cup, it's just a shame that there's no news in it at all.
The cover sets the scene for the rest of the paper. We have a photoshopped collage of all kinds of British personalities, with some flowers and Big Ben thrown in for good measure. Excuse the cross marks on the faces up there, that comes from me and the missus playing a game of "Who The Hell Is That?" There are all kinds of people here, from John Cleese and Dizzee Rascal, to David Attenborough and Tinky Winky. Of course, the Royal Family are bigger than everyone else, because England.
On the next page, we have various polls that The Sun conducted with English people about English things. One asks if we are proud to be English, with the "Yes" portion emblazoned with a patriotic flag, while "Don't know" and "No" coloured a putrid green and yellow, because those people make us sick. Also, some don't consider themselves to be English, and they're obviously a dangerous blood red. Other questions include "What are the greatest English inventions?" and "Who do you think is the greatest living English person, and why is it The Queen?"
I could analyse every page in detail, but every "story" is a twee fluff piece about how awesome England is, such as how Robbie Williams is moving back here because he just loves this country so much more than his glitzy LA home, and a full double page mockup of what The Sun front page would look like during historic English moments. Apparently the same pun laden awfulness as always, and I'm sure one of them is just the name of a Horrible Histories book.
I'm probably being a tad cynical here, but hey, it's what I do best. To be fair, there's no mention of benefit grabbing scumbags or foreigners stealing all our jobs, this just seems like a nice little tribute to our country, designed to drum up support for a competition we haven't won in 48 years. But there are little snippets of text that hint at something a bit more sinister when compared to the regular paper's politically charged messages. It's stated that being proud to be English has become seen as toxic, almost racist, but that this certainly isn't the case, and we should be proud of our own country just like anyone else.
I certainly agree that we can be proud of our own country, but with the amount of "Britain for the British" being thrown around, and calls for us to close our borders and send people back home, it's easy to see why such flagrant patriotism is not the most inviting of things. Perhaps The Sun understands this, and wants to change the image of national pride for the better. At least, that's what I thought, until I saw they published a column by Rod Liddle, who says that the best thing about being English is that he's not French or Belgian, and anyone who wakes up and realises they're Belgian would probably want to start self-harming. I wish I was making that up, but it's exactly what he says.
|Ha ha! Only joking. But I'm not really.
My rating: 1/5