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Exclusive: Spike Lee wants US soccer team to wear “BP Sucks” shirts vs. England

Photo by David Shankbone

I did not attend last night’s Brooklyn Blogfest event (my invitation must have got caught in my spam filter). But my spy tells me that film director Spike Lee, the keynote presenter, took the occasion to bash the British about the Gulf oil spill. In doing so, Lee joined a growing chorus of high-profile Americans – including the President - who are starting to take pot-shots at the Brits in frustration over the seemingly endless oil leak.

Apparently, in his speech Lee urged the US soccer team to wear undershirts that read "BP Sucks". His idea is that they can reveal the shirts when they score a goal against England in their World Cup match this coming Saturday. (Of course, England supporters might say “if they score”.) The Brooklyn bloggers laughed along.

Lee has been outspoken about the oil spill. Indeed, he is one of many prominent commentators who have called on President Obama to adopt a more emotionally correct response (see my post about this phenomenon here). On Anderson Cooper’s CNN program, Lee said, “He's very, as I know, as I've seen, calm, cool, collected - but one time, go off! If there's any one time to go off, this is it.”

Well, on cue, Obama has been ratcheting up the rhetoric on a daily basis. In an interview on NBC’s “Today” program, he said he wanted to know "whose ass to kick" over the spill. And now one of his latest ploys is to refer to BP as “British Petroleum” over and over, with extra emphasis on the “British”. Obama obviously wants to divert the enormous amount of flak he’s catching over the oil episode, and, despite his reputation as a cosmopolitan, has no qualms of blaming it all on foreigners. This proves my point in my earlier post that when pundits egg on Obama to get angry, bad stuff follows.

This Brit-bashing is a worrying and backward trend, and Lee and Obama are not the only ones engaging in it. Democrat congressmen Anthony Weiner says Americans should know that anyone from BP with a British accent is lying (see video below). As a resident of Brooklyn, I'm embarrassed to say that Weiner represents parts of my borough and Queens. Apparently, Weiner has watched so many Hollywood films that cast Brits as the bad guy that he thinks the typecasting reflects reality.

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