In this season of Remembrance, we are again in the midst of the "poppy wars". Politically correct folk of every hue are questioning the mass wearing of the poppy as a symbol of Remembrance for the pity of war.
Was Earl Haig, whose wife suggested setting up a poppy factory in England after WW1 to provide employment and raise funds for ex service personnel, a war hero or a butcher?
Is the poem written by Canadian Lieutenant Colonel John MacCrae and oft repeated in Acts of Remembrance glorifying war and calling for more sacrifice?("Take up our quarrel with the foe...)
Should we wear red or white poppies or both?
This year, I feel a bit like the Queen in Alice in Wonderland, crying " It means whatever I want it to mean"
I wear a poppy as a symbol that, though I believe war can never be justified, still I respect those who served their country and paid with their lives, as well as those who still bear the scars of war, service men and women as well as the countless civilians who simply got in the way of war.
I will continue to wear a poppy to show that respect and to symbolise my commitment to working toward peace, to bringing about the day when talking will happen before fighting, when those who have served are properly cared for and when joining our armed forces will not seem an attractive alternative to long term unemployment for our nation's young people.
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