Be thankful every day that you don’t live in California or in Britain where the newest, craziest, and most extreme forms of contemporary insanity flourish, multiply, and metastasize in more outrageous and virulent forms every week.
Douglas Murray, in The Spectator, recently noted in an editorial that British Counter Terrorism’s Prevent’s “Research Information and Communications Unit” (RICU) identified some potential sources of indoctrination in right-wing extremism.
[A]ccording to RICU there were warning signs if people absorbed information or opinions from ‘pro-Brexit and centre-right commentators’. These included Jacob Rees-Mogg, Melanie Phillips, Rod Liddle and yours truly. So everybody reading this column is at as much risk of being ‘radicalised’ as some young Muslim settling down with a tape recording of Ayman al-Zawahiri or Osama bin Laden, and Rees-Mogg becomes the equivalent of a finger–waving imam sending the young off to become martyrs in the cause of Allah. Which is strange because he never came across that way to me when we crossed paths at Conservative Philosophy Group meetings.
I have since been able to look over some of this pathetic material provided at public expense and can confirm that it gets worse. In one RICU document a number of books are singled out, the possession or reading of which could point to severe wrongthink and therefore potential radicalisation. These include a book on the Rotherham rape gangs, books by Peter Hitchens, Melanie Phillips and – once again – me. Without wanting to beat my own drum, the book of mine that is singled out for this sinister treatment is my 2017 work The Strange Death of Europe. This book spent almost 20 weeks in the Sunday Times bestseller lists, has been translated into dozens of languages and was for some time the bestselling non-fiction book in the UK. So that is an awful lot of potential radicals just there. …
When I first saw these documents I felt a sort of white-hot anger. But then I read on and saw that these same taxpayer-funded fools provide lists of other books shared by people who have sympathies with the ‘far-right and Brexit’. Key signs that people have fallen into this abyss include watching the Kenneth Clark TV series Civilisation, The Thick of It and Great British Railway Journeys. I need to stress again that I am not making this up. This has all been done on your dime and mine in order to stop ‘extremism’ in these islands.
These include Leviathan by Thomas Hobbes, John Locke’s Two Treatises of Government and Edmund Burke’s Reflections on the Revolution in France, as well as works by Thomas Carlyle and Adam Smith. Elsewhere RICU warns that radicalisation could occur from books by authors including C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Aldous Huxley and Joseph Conrad. I kid you not, though it seems that all satire is dead, but the list of suspect books also includes 1984 by George Orwell.
So in general, I begin to feel in good company. If government agencies are going to compile lists of suspect books, then I am very happy to stand condemned alongside these fine people, both living and dead.
The last episodes of Harry and Meghan’s Whingefest aired on Netflix last Thursday and my own favorite Briton, Top Gear lead presenter Jeremy Clarkson responded with some frank personal reaction in his Friday column in the Sun.
Jeremy is what the British would describe as “a bit of a lad” and, sadly, today’s Britannia is even more infested than America with pious left-wing holier-than-thous. In response to Jeremy Clarkson’s remarks, Woke Britannia essentially had a cow.
Something in excess of 20,000 shocked and offended bed wetters wrote in to Britain’s press regulator (no First Amendment in Blighty), demanding Clarkson be fired or beheaded or otherwise suppressed.
His column has been taken down, but apparently what provoked all the brouhaha was his writing anent Duchess Meghan:
“I hate her. Not like I hate Nicola Sturgeon [leftist Nationalist Scottish Prime Minister] or Rose West [female serial killer]. I hate her on a cellular level.” And: “At night, I’m unable to sleep as I lie there, grinding my teeth and dreaming of the day when she is made to parade naked through the streets of every town in Britain while the crowds chant ‘Shame!’ and thrown lumps of excrement at her.” He also contended that “everyone” his age “thinks the same way.”
British papers have been absolutely filled with denunciations of Clarkson’s politically incorrect remarks by everyone from Rishi Sunak to Nicola Sturgeon to his own daughter.
It’s sad really that, just like America, Britain, once a nation of lions has today wound up ruled by sheep.
Alec Marsh describes just how far the rot has set in in today’s Britain.
[In] Sebastian Payne[‘s] forthcoming book about the last days of Boris Johnson’s government…. [h]e tells the story of [Dominic] Raab arriving to counsel the Prime Minister during his last hours in Downing Street, dressed in white tie. ‘Raab awkwardly told Number 10 staffers he had to attend a white-tie dinner at the Mansion House in the City of London that evening, but required assistance with the outfit. An attendant was found with the skills to fix his bow tie.’
An attendant was found with the skills to fix his bow tie. Have standards of British public life ever been quite so damned in just 12 words?
Dominic Raab can’t do up a bow tie. And nor, it seems, could the coterie of those around Boris – or perhaps they didn’t want to get too close to him to do it? Either way, it looks bad.
Because to my mind, a Tory grandee who can’t tie a bow tie is like a Labour bigwig who doesn’t know the words to ‘The Red Flag’. They’re a bungee short of the full roof rack. And that’s because, if nothing else, the Tory party is still a very black-tie party – you know it, don’t you? The men at least. These are people who love nothing more than squeezing into a 35-year-old cummerbund and listening to an after-dinner speech having drizzled three courses down their dress shirts.
Raab stands for the party of Winston Churchill – he is a lineal political descendent of the man who, don’t forget, didn’t just wear a bow tie more or less daily but also masterminded the defeat of the world’s most fearsome war machine as well as the world’s most odious regime while doing so. It’s not going too far to say that Churchill saved the world while wearing a bow tie.
Eight decades on and of course things have changed, but not that much.
Not every man can carry off a bow tie in ordinary dress. But it is impossible to move in upper adult circles without finding oneself present from time to time at occasions requiring wearing semi-formal (black tie) and formal (white tie) attire. Few men today can afford valets, and wearing pre-tied ties is profoundly infra dig. Therefore, knowing how to tie (and adjust) a bow tie is an essential adult male skill.
Capel Lofft fears that when Queen Elizabeth passed on, she took with her the traditional values and virtues that made Britain admired world-wide.
There has been much talk since the Queen’s death — and indeed during the Platinum Jubilee celebrations — about how the Queen embodied certain admirable, old-fashioned ideals: commitment to duty, stoicism, discretion and so forth. Underlying many of these (entirely correct) statements is an undertone of regret that such sterling qualities are in such short supply now. She stood out in such sharp relief because the background of our culture and society has become so clearly marked by the opposite qualities. Exhibitionism. Emotional incontinence. The elevation of outward appearances and tacky self-promotion over substance, character and service. Flakiness, fragility and self-pity. We have become a society of precious, whining narcissists talking at and past each other, all whilst congratulating ourselves on our “openness” and being so pleased at how “modern” we are.
That by and large is what most people have wanted, or at least it’s a culture they have acquiesced in and often enthusiastically embraced. The death of Diana gave many people an excuse for openly parading just those values. A profound cultural shift was taking place. It found its symbolic apotheosis and triumph in those days of September 1997, and in the cheap emotionalism that Tony Blair proved himself so fluent in when he reacted to her death with his “People’s Princess” speech. The Queen stood against them, and the majority of the public hated her for it.
I don’t wish to comment on the character of Diana — no doubt in many ways she was a kindly woman with good motivations. But a sort of caricature of the worst elements that could be extracted from her life, or perhaps more accurately her public image — making a spectacle of oneself, ostentatious virtue-signalling, a lack of emotional self-control — has become the model for our culture for 25 years now. One reason why the death of the Queen is so painful and seems to herald such uncertain and disquieting times is because, in our heart of hearts, we’ve all become sick of it. We saw in the Queen one last outpost of the old values that most of us endorse but struggle to emulate because they are counter-cultural and unpopular and difficult to stick to. We embraced a Diana culture whilst deep down we knew that the Elizabeth morality we were leaving behind was superior.
Here are a few phenomena we’re probably all familiar with: The dead look behind the eyes of the Instagram influencer as they parade the latest shiny, fake incarnation of their carefully crafted “personal brand”. The hollow ring of the LinkedIn drone as they post their latest screed on wellbeing or diversity, or how they manage their “executive schedule”. The grotesque voyeurism of the Reality TV show peopled by walking advertisements for brands of fake tan who demean themselves by participating in a series of staged emotional “dramas” and tawdry public sexual acts in order to kickstart a 15 minute career as a professional strumpet. The blue-haired Twitter progressive activist who claims to be “literally shaking” or traumatised by some opinion they don’t agree with.
All of these things and a million more besides are a product of the society that we have created in defiance of all those old-fashioned values the Queen stood for, values that our institutions and, sadly, most of the public have spent decades spitting on, sniggering at and ignoring. Our elites routinely smear a predilection for tradition as “fustiness”, a dedication to duty as being “uptight”, stoicism as being “uncaring”, and a desire for privacy as being “out of touch” or “stiff”. Too many of us have bought into this narrative.
It seems to me to be more than a coincidence that this cultural shift, which was so sharply symbolised by the reactions to the death of Diana, came at a time of accelerating globalisation and the consolidation of an intensified, deregulated form of capitalism. The guiding principle of that new economic settlement was that anything and anyone can be commodified, ranging from individuals’ appearance and sexuality to a country’s history and aesthetics: think of “cool Britannia” and the emergence of Britain as a sort of marketing brand in the eyes of Blair and his successors. Emotional “openness”, self-obsession and vanity, perpetual and self-conscious public assertions of one’s fragility, vulnerability and need for the appropriate forms of therapy in response, the temper tantrums and grievances of self-righteous progressive identity politics: all are new cultural fissures that can be mined for profit.
There isn’t money to be made out of restraint, quiet commitment to duty and self-control. A political economy that has become so heavily dependent on monetising our personal vanity, exhibitionism and the crises of self-perception and emotional insecurity that inevitably result, despises those who are private, self-contained and resilient. Other than tourist tat and Corgi soft toys, the monarchy is one thing that cannot be commodified, strip-mined for its cultural assets. It’s an institution that depends for its success on cultivating those qualities that have become radically counter-cultural in a world of hyper-capitalism built upon the commodification of the spectacle: those qualities which our late Queen personified with such dignity and common sense.
After social norms had been inconveniently interrupted by the Second World War, presentations at court were revived by George VI in 1947. But the business was less exclusive, less glamorous than before. And it felt uncomfortably anachronistic in a postwar Britain which was struggling with rationing and bomb damage. The presentation party went into a slow decline until finally, in November 1957, the lord chamberlain’s office announced that there would be no more presentations after the following year’s Season. “The present time is one of transition in the sense that the traditional barriers of class have been broken down,” admitted the author of a rueful leading article in the Times the following day. “It has long ceased to be true to say that the Court is the centre of an aristocracy, the members of which form a clearly recognizable section of the community.” Princess Margaret was more succinct: “We had to put a stop to it,” she said. “Every tart in London was getting in.”
So 1958 was to be the last royal Season, and anxious social commentators predicted that its demise heralded the end of the Season altogether. In fact, the hectic round of social activities continued into the 1960s, with the overlapping worlds of aristocracy and plutocracy simply getting on with the business of bringing out their daughters and advertising their availability for marriage. Traditional fixtures were maintained—Queen Charlotte’s Ball, the Royal Caledonian Ball, both held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in Mayfair—as were the great sporting occasions—Royal Ascot, Henley Royal Regatta, Wimbledon, and the Royal International Horse Show at White City Stadium.
There were also the private events, the cocktail parties, the “small dance” in Holland Park or Hampstead, perhaps shared between two or three debutantes, the grand ball with royal guests. There were around a hundred private dances each year well into the 1960s. Mothers whose own debuts had taken place in prewar days went for familiar venues—stalwarts like the Hyde Park Hotel and Claridge’s, the Ritz, the Dorchester. Others, with impressive addresses in Mayfair or Belgravia or Chelsea, opted for their own town houses.
But around half of the coming-out dances held both before and after the end of presentations at court didn’t take place in London at all. In 1956, for instance, Lady Cynthia Asquith gave a ball for her granddaughter at Stanway House in Gloucestershire, the Jacobean country home of her nephew Francis, Earl of Wemyss and March. Also in Gloucestershire, Mrs J. H. Dent-Brocklehurst gave a ball for her daughter Catharine at the family’s 15th-century seat of Sudeley Castle. The Marchioness of Abergavenny brought out her daughter, Lady Anne Nevill, at Eridge Park in Sussex; Mrs Bromley-Davenport did the same for her daughter at Capesthorne Hall in Cheshire, which had belonged to the Davenport family since the mid-18th century.
The country house was coming to rival the traditional hotel and the Mayfair mansion as a fashionable venue for a coming-out ball, as indeed it had been for years both in Ireland, where the season revolved around the Dublin Horse Show in August, and in Scotland, where the best of the Northern Season’s autumnal entertainments had always taken place in private homes. And while the country house made for a very different experience—guests were more likely to meet with country doctors, inebriated clergymen, and horse-mad matrons rather than the determinedly sophisticated types that might be found at the big London dances—it was usually a pleasant one.
“The best dances were in the country, in some castle or huge house,” remembered Angela Huth, who came out in 1956. Fiona MacCarthy, who came out two years after Angela and, like Angela, went on to forge a distinguished career as a writer, reckoned that “the Season only came alive out in the country.” People dressed less formally and were generally more relaxed. “In the last hour or two of a good party in the country, as dawn rose on dancing partners sleepily entwined on the dance floor in the garden, even girls who had their reservations about the Season felt fortunate indeed.” Angela Huth agreed: “The unforgettable part of the country dances was the return to the house at which we were staying to find the brilliance of the previous evening veiled in early mist, melancholy wisteria drooping more heavily, mourning doves cooing—all so uniquely English that tears came to tired eyes.”
Dr. Arianne Shavisi, on the left (in more ways than one).
In Britain, there has recently arisen a patriotic, Feel-Good movement calling itself: “One Britain, One Nation.” It was founded in 2013 by one Kash Singh, a Punjabi who immigrated to Britain with his parents at the age of six and who grew up to become an Inspector with the West Yorkshire Police.
One Britain, One Nation (OBON, for short) has called for “schools across the UK to celebrate One Britain One Nation Day on 25 June, when children can learn about [British] shared values of tolerance, kindness, pride and respect”, and in particular for children to sing a patriotic song written by school children at St John’s CE Primary School, Bradford titled “We are Britain and we have one dream / To unite all people in one great team.” (Gag me with a spoon!)
All this goody-goody, goo-goo-ism has attracted the support of Boris Johnson, Joanna Lumley, Brandon Lewis, Lord Tebbit, Lord Steel of Aikwood, and various religious leaders, including bishops and imams.
What can one say? It’s not my kind of thing, but it is obviously true that human beings differ in all sorts of tribal ways in every society and need to tolerate one another’s differences and get along, and recent immigrants ought to be grateful to be where they are and should be endeavoring to assimmilate, not complaining.
I came across an editorial this morning in the hoity-toity London Review of Books by one Dr. Arianne Shavisi, who is a Senior Lecturer in Medical Ethics & Humanities (Clinical and Experimental Medicine) at Brighton and Sussex Medical School, a specialist in feminist bioethics, gender studies, global health ethics, social determinants of health, and the philosophy of mind, and a Free Speech opponent.
Dr. Shavisi has degrees like a thermometer from Oxford and Cambridge, and in addition to her university position sits on editorial boards, publishes in prestigious venues, and even advises the British Government on Abortion and Women’s Health. Pretty darn good for a first generation British subject fresh off the banana boat.
You would think this young woman would be grateful to Britain and the British people for letting her parents in, doubtless as refugees from the crazed mullahs’ fanatical regime. Dr. Arianne gets to swan around Decolonize STEM Symposia in overalls and a t-shirt, instead of burying herself in a voluminous black Chador. She can walk down the street or even drink wine without worrying about getting arrested by the Morality Police. She can abuse and attack the country lives in and she is not thrown into a dungeon.
But, no, she is not grateful. In fact, she confusedly considers her Aryan/Arianne self to be a person of color and some sort of victim of Racism, simply because she is a person of foreign, and therefore minority, origin and not a member of the native majority. How terribly, terribly racist and unfair!
She is also a fountain of Marxist CRT nonsense.
From the London Review of Books editorial opposing OBON:
White children experience white privilege regardless of their household income. That doesn’t mean their lives are a piece of cake, it just means that race isn’t part of their burden. Whiteness inoculates them against certain forms of social marginalisation, but it provides little protection against poverty and its variegated effects. (By contrast, wealth fortified with whiteness is practically a superpower.) The problem is therefore not that poor white children are being taught that they’re privileged along the axis of race, it’s that they and others are not being told they’re oppressed along the axis of class. Rather than subtracting conversations about white privilege from our classrooms, we need to ensure that children also learn that the system is designed to keep them poor.
That nefarious system obviously failed to stop her Persian immigrant self.
You can’t demand that children be proud any more than you can ask them not to be ashamed. Poverty and racism pose material barriers, but they also fill people with a shame that is antithetical to their thriving. As Hannah Gadsby put it in her 2018 show Nanette: ‘When you soak a child in shame, they cannot develop the neurological pathways that carry thought.’ Learning is much harder when you’re hungry or humiliated. The government has no place asking children of colour to be proud of a country that fails to recognise racism, and it has no place asking poor children to sing for a country that sells their hunger to private companies which send them half a carrot.
In this talk I counter the claim that free speech is under threat in universities, and instead submit that new opportunities have arisen to make knowledge exchange more inclusive. I argue that there is good reason to demand “political correctness” in the discussion of certain issues, and that far from standing in the way of free exchange, political correctness aims to make that exchange more widely accessible. Political correctness, if judiciously implemented, is a form of censorship whose purpose is to embolden and amplify the voices of the most marginalised and silenced communities within our society, and to bring their experiences and standpoints into collective discourses. I suggest that academics should endorse restrictions on permissible academic speech, with the aim of producing educational spaces within which epistemic outcomes are optimised for all social groups. One concrete strategy is to seriously engage the potent, but currently much-maligned, regulatory functions of “safe spaces” and “no platforming,” which I define and defend against common objections.
Here is Kristie Higgs’s petition that got her fired. (click on the image for larger version)
Toby Young, in the British Spectator, explains how you can lose your job even for anonymous on-line dissent.
Kristie Higgs, a 44-year-old school assistant, didnâ€™t realise that criticising the sex education curriculum at her sonâ€™s school on Facebook would get her fired. For one thing, her account was set to â€˜privateâ€™, so only her family and friends could read it. For another, she was posting under her maiden name, so no one could connect her with her employer. Finally, the school that sacked her for expressing these views wasnâ€™t actually her sonâ€™s, but another one altogether. This seems a pretty clear case of a person losing her livelihood for dissenting from progressive orthodoxy.
Kristieâ€™s case is being heard at an employment tribunal in Bristol this week. The dispute relates to two Facebook posts from two years ago. In one, Kristie urged her family and friends to sign a petition objecting to mandatory new sex and relationship lessons in English primary schools. In the other, she shared an article by an American conservative Christian commentator criticising the promotion of â€˜transgender ideologyâ€™ in childrenâ€™s books. â€˜This is happening in our primary schools now!â€™ Kristie said.
Someone circulated screenshots of these posts to Kristieâ€™s colleagues at Farmorâ€™s School in Gloucestershire, where she had worked for seven years, and predictable outrage followed. Senior members of staff compared her views to those of â€˜Nazi right-wing extremistsâ€™, according to Kristie, and someone lodged a formal complaint with the head, claiming her posts were â€˜homophobic and prejudiced to the LGBT communityâ€™. Kristie was summoned to a â€˜disciplinaryâ€™ at a hotel just before Christmas, where she was cross-examined for six hours by three of the governors, supported by three members of staff. When Kristie tried to explain that her objection to her son being taught that a woman could have a penis was rooted in her Christian beliefs, she was told: â€˜Keep your religion out of it.â€™ After the hearing she was dismissed for â€˜illegal discriminationâ€™, â€˜serious inappropriate use of social mediaâ€™ and â€˜online comments that could bring the school into disreputeâ€™.
There are two free speech issues at stake here. The first is whether an employerâ€™s social media policy, limiting what employees are allowed to say on Facebook and other platforms, can legitimately be extended to private conversations, particularly when the employee has taken steps to disguise her identity. On the face of it, that looks like a breach of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protects the right to privacy. The second is whether Kristieâ€™s comments constituted â€˜illegal discriminationâ€™ as defined in the UKâ€™s Equality Act 2010. Did they create an â€˜intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environmentâ€™ for LGBT colleagues, even though they wouldnâ€™t have known about them if they hadnâ€™t been circulated by someone trying to get her into trouble? Or is she permitted to express such views by Article 10 of the ECHR, which protects the right to freedom of expression?
Kristieâ€™s legal team can also appeal to the Equality Act, which makes it illegal to discriminate against employees for their possessions of various â€˜protected characteristicsâ€™, including religion and belief. Her lawyers will argue she lost her job because she expressed her belief about the immutability of natal sex. However, when Maya Forstaterâ€™s lawyers made that argument in an employment tribunal last year â€” she was sacked for refusing to use trans womenâ€™s preferred pronouns â€” the judge said her gender critical beliefs werenâ€™t â€˜worthy of respect in a democratic societyâ€™.
Kristieâ€™s treatment is -obviously deeply concerning for believers in free speech, but thereâ€™s another aspect of her case that worries me. According to a recent white paper, a Bill will soon be brought before parliament empowering Ofcom to regulate the internet. Under the proposals, Ofcom will be able to impose punitive fines on Facebook for not removing content that political activists find â€˜offensiveâ€™, even if it doesnâ€™t fall foul of any existing speech laws.
Twitter already bans users for misgendering trans people, so it wonâ€™t take much of a push for all the social media companies to ban people for criticising trans ideology. The Free Speech Union has just produced a briefing paper warning of the dire consequences for free speech if the governmentâ€™s internet censorship plans become law, and I urge you to read it. Soon, it wonâ€™t just be Kristie Higgs who is punished for challenging woke dogma. It will be all of us.
Central image on breast star of the Order of St. Michael and St. George.
The Guardian finds the image of St. Michael defeating Satan to be racist and offensive.
Campaigners are calling for the redesign of one of Britainâ€™s highest honours personally bestowed by the Queen because they say its badge resembles a depiction of a white angel standing on the neck of a chained black man.
The Order of St Michael and St George is traditionally awarded to ambassadors and diplomats and senior Foreign Office officials who have served abroad. It has three ranks, the highest of which is Knight Grand Cross (GCMG), followed by Knight Commander (KCMG) and Companion (CMG).
The imagery on the awardâ€™s badge portrays St Michael trampling on Satan, but campaigners say the image is reminiscent of the killing of George Floyd by white police officers in the US that led to worldwide protests.
A petition calling for the medal to be redesigned has attracted more than 2,000 signatures on change.org. The petition, started by Tracy Reeve, says: â€œThis is a highly offensive image, it is also reminiscent of the recent murder of George Floyd by the white policeman in the same manner presented here in this medal. We the undersigned are calling for this medal to completely redesigned in a more appropriate way and for an official apology to be given for the offence it has given.â€
Bumi Thomas, a Nigerian British singer, activist and specialist in visual communications, said the imagery on the badge was clear. â€œIt is not a demon; it is a black man in chains with a white, blue-eyed figure standing on his neck. It is literally what happened to George Floyd and what has been happening to black people for centuries under the guise of diplomatic missions: active, subliminal messaging that reinforces the conquest, subjugation and dehumanisation of people of colour.
â€œIt is a depiction on a supposed honour of the subjugation of the black and brown people of the world and the superiority of the white, a construct born in the 16th century. It is the definition of institutional racism that this image is not only permitted but celebrated on one of the countryâ€™s highest honours. Whilst statues are being pulled down and relocated, emblems and symbols of this nature also need to be redesigned to reflect a more progressive, holistic relationship between Britain and the Commonwealth nations.â€
Sir Simon Woolley, the director and one of the founders of Operation Black Vote, which campaigns for greater representation of ethnic minorities in politics and public life, said he was appalled by the badge.
â€œThe original image may have been of St Michael slaying Satan, but the figure has no horns or tail and is clearly a black man. It is a shocking depiction, and it is even more shocking that that image could be presented to ambassadors representing this country abroad,â€ he said.
â€œThis is the past that informs the present, and thatâ€™s why it symbolises everything that Black Lives Matter are campaigning for. It provides a challenge and an opportunity. The challenge is to acknowledge it and own it, but the opportunity is to put it right. It is easy to get rid of an image, but I would like root-and-branch restructuring, because most of the institutions created by the empire are still there.
â€œFor most black and brown people, there is nothing good about the empire. Most people will see this as an image of George Floyd on a global scale and a symbol of white supremacy.â€
T Harry shooting driven birds at Sandringham in better times.
The Sun is happy to poke fun at Harry for giving up his guns to please his boss Meghan, but “Royal Correspondent” Matt Wilkinson, and whoever-is-his-editor, were themselves obviously neutered so long ago that they never owned any to give up.
Since it was a pair of Purdeys that were sold, they were obviously shotguns, not “handmade hunting rifles.”
The Star simply stole the same story from The Sun, and they refer to Harry selling his “handmade shooting rifle collection.”
Prince Harry has flogged his handmade hunting rifles after giving up bloodsports to please wife Meghan.
A fellow hunter bought the pair of prized Purdey firearms, thought to be worth at least Â£50,000, in a private deal.
Harry learnt to shoot as a child and once killed a one-ton buffalo.
But Meghan is opposed to hunting and pals hinted the Duke of Sussex would give up to appease her.
Harry, 35, was also absent from the recent shoots at Balmoral and Sandringham. He sold his two British-made guns five months ago â€” before he and Meghan, 38, quit the UK for a new life in North America.
A friend of the anonymous buyer said: â€œHe bought them because he wanted them, not because they belonged to Harry, but he was quite chuffed when he found out. They are beautiful examples and heâ€™s very pleased with them but heâ€™s not the sort of yperson who wants to boast about the royal connection.â€
Last week conservationist Dr Jane Goodall said she expected Harry to turn his back on bloodsports.
The Telegraph has today another of those stories that makes you want to launch some Hellfire missiles from a drone at another elite university.
Cambridge University Studentsâ€™ Union has said that having military personnel at freshersâ€™ fair is â€œalarmingâ€ for attendees and could â€œdetrimentally affectâ€ their mental health.
Students voted to ban any societies from bringing firearms along to the fair after Stella Swain, the welfare and rights officer, argued that some people may find them â€œtriggeringâ€.
The motion said that the presence of firearms and military personnel at the fair shows â€œimplicit approval of their use, despite the links between military and firearms and violence on an international scaleâ€.
Ms Swain, who proposed the motion, pointed out that CUSU had previously committed to supporting efforts to â€œdemilitariseâ€ the university, and that freshersâ€™ fair should not be a place for â€œmilitary organisations to recruitâ€.
â€œThe presence of firearms and military personnel at freshersâ€™ fair is alarming and off-putting for some students, and has the potential to detrimentally affect studentsâ€™ mental welfare,â€ the motion said.
Colonel Richard Kemp, the former commander of the British Forces in Afghanistan, labelled the motion as â€œpathetic, to say the very leastâ€.