Jon Snow: veteran Channel 4 News presenter in new 'poppy fascism' row
Published 03/11/2010 | 10:46
The veteran Channel Four News presenter, has hit out "poppy fascism" and "intolerance" after he was criticised for refusing to wear the emblem on air in the lead up to Remembrance Sunday.
The 63 year-old told a viewer to get “on yer bike” and that “Hitler lost the war” after he was admonished for not wearing a poppy during broadcasts.
The row, which occurred on the long serving news presenter's Snowblog site and his Twitter account, came after the viewer told Mr Snow that he was “dishonouring” the war dead.
The viewer, who gave his name as Stan, posted the comment asking Mr Snow if he thought of the British troops when deciding not to wear a poppy.
But the criticism provoked an emphatic response from Mr Snow, who said it was “precisely the Poppy fascism, or intolerance” he had railed against previously.
“Stan they died that we might be free to wear a Poppy whenever we wish. i (sic) wish to wear mine on Remembrance Sunday,” he wrote.
“When you wish to wear yours is your business. Compelling people to wear poppies because YOU think they OUGHT to is precisely the Poppy fascism, or intolerance, that I have complained of in the past.
“On yer bike Stan, with or without a poppy, it’s all your own free choice..Hitler lost the war!”
Mr Snow, who said he had bought his poppy in case none was left when he returns from covering the U.S. mid-term elections, later drew attention to the row on Twitter.
“They died that we might choose... I shall choose to on Remembrance Sunday in concert with others, in church, not on telly,” he added.
Viewers of the news programme have previously complained about Mr Snow’s failure to wear a poppy on air. He has refused to wear any “symbols” on air, saying it was a private matter.
Some BBC presenters have been criticised for allowing presenters including Andrew Marr and Clare Balding to wear charity poppies too early.
A Channel 4 spokesman last night said: “We don’t impose a requirement to wear poppies... nor is there a deliberate decision not to do so.”