Mediawatch special: Arsenal, ‘hippy crack’ and The Sun
1 weeks ago, 14:58
Where to start with The Sun’s front page? As tempting as it is to simply scream into a paper bag at a national newspaper’s front page being given over to the phenomenon of young men having entirely legal fun in their own free time, this sh*t needs pulling apart.
— The Sun (@TheSun) December 6, 2018
So we start with the phrase ‘hippy crack’, which is used by literally no person outside of a tabloid newsroom. It is not ‘hippy crack’, it is laughing gas, nitrous oxide, balloons or – we are reliably informed by people so much younger than ourselves – ‘nos’. For over 200 years, it has been used for recreational purposes.
Oh and it is also given to children at the dentist and women in labour.
The Sun of course use the term ‘hippy crack’ because it is a dog whistle phrase. It’s particularly powerful when used in a combination with other words to make ‘hippy crack club binge’. Which is a hell of a way to describe young men having having entirely legal fun in their own free time.
One man who should know a thing or two about the law is Sun journalist Nick Parker, himself a convicted criminal after being found guilty of handling a stolen mobile phone. You should not judge a man solely by the calibre of his friends but…
I worked with Nick Parker at The Sun, 20+ years ago. He's not a criminal, he's a superb reporter who just did his job.
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) December 9, 2014
The second thing to note about this whole story is that it happened in August. It’s simply not news. And clearly has absolutely no relevance in December, when those same Arsenal players have just stretched an unbeaten run to 20 matches.
‘ARSENAL footballers have been filmed passing out after inhaling “hippy crack” from balloons at a wild champagne and vodka party.
‘The shocking footage obtained by The Sun shows Gooners stars Alexandre Lacazette, Matteo Guendouzi, Mesut Ozil and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at the heart of the dangerous binge on nitrous oxide.’
Surely it can only be termed ‘shocking footage’ is anybody is actually shocked. And surely it can only be termed a ‘dangerous binge’ if you actually know they binged in a dangerous way. Or are we just bandying around powerful adjectives with no actual evidence. Oh we are…
‘The boozy bash enjoyed by about a dozen players, and 70 girls, took place in London in August – just days before the start of the season.’
‘Just days’. Sod days, it was ‘just hours’. A lot of hours, granted, but ‘just hours’ nonetheless.
The key part of that sentence is of course ‘before the start of the season’. Which sounds to Mediawatch like a whole heap more sensible than getting absolutely rat-arsed before and after games like the Arsenal players of old. But good old-fashioned booze is obviously fine; it’s ...
Category: sports football mediawatch