On my mind
IN November 1917 in Australia a perfectly aimed egg knocked off Welsh-born prime minister Billy Hughes’s hat.
If you think that’s fowl act, read on.
Back in the 19th Century there are examples of criminals pelted with eggs, but for politicians today on the receiving end of a large free range from the supermarket it’s no yolk.
Yet sharing eggs and other foodstuff with political opponents has a long and distinguished history.
The earliest recorded incident took place in 63 AD, when Roman governor Vespasian was hit with a load of turnips.
It seems you are nobody in politics if you have not been egged – ask Harold Wilson, Helmut Kohl, David Cameron, Jeremy Corbyn, Emmanuel Macron, Richard Nixon (twice on the same day) and Bill Clinton among others who all took an unexpected breakfast.
Whereas Ed Miliband took his egg sunny side up with a big smile, John Prescott’s pugilistic response to a perfectly launched North Wales free range yolk at point blank range reflected, he alleged, Tony Blair’s order to connect with the people.
However, the major political shift in recent weeks is from the egg to the far more expensive and spectacular milkshake.
The targets have been purveyors of dubious philosophy who squelch away from what has been described as political theatre but is in reality political violence.
No-one can justify that kind of assault, but neither can we accept the rise of the far right in this country and in Europe which feeds on prejudice, purveys hate, trades in bigotry, rants from bully pulpits, preaches xenophobia and inevitably provokes the anger we have seen.
We all know what the outcome of that was in Europe not too long ago. And it was not milkshakes that were thrown.
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