NME Gets Morrissey’s Panties In A Bunch Over Accusations Of Racism

Nov 29th, 2007 // 14 Comments

morrissey.jpgEven though it’s not the first time bigoted statements/iconography have earned him terrible “Big Mouth Strikes Again” headlines from the English tabloids, an older, more retiring Morrissey has had enough of being scrutinized for his indefensible positions on evil foreigners and whatnot. Living in America must have made him more litigious as well, because now he’s planning on suing the NME for defamation because they called him a racist after he made remarks about how immigration is destroying the moral fiber of her majesty’s Great Britain.

The magazine quoted Morrissey allegedly saying: “Although I don’t have anything against people from other countries, the higher the influx into England the more the British identity disappears. So the price is enormous.”

“If you travel to Germany, it’s still absolutely Germany. If you travel to Sweden, it still has a Swedish identity. But travel to England and you have no idea where you are,” the singer is reported to have said.

Well, it’s not exactly showing up to an interview with a sign that reads “GO BACK FROM WHERE YOU CAME FROM.” Right? Okay, it’s pretty bad. You’d think Steve would know better after two decades of dealing with reporters hungry for sensationalistic quotes from a noted crank who thinks the modern world blows, and eager to tart up their stories with crypto-racist rhetoric. He later issued a semi-retraction/apology, saying “It could be construed that the reason I wouldn’t wish to live in England is the immigration explosion. And that’s not true at all.” But the NME has yet to print the retraction Morrissey has demanded.

Morrissey Insists On NME Apology [BBC]

  1. Audif Jackson Winters III

    As much as I love Morrissey, when he says stuff like this, it’s a little hard to believe that past lyrics like “England for the English” were sung “in character” …

  2. Lucas Jensen

    Yeah, that statement sucks. But Morrissey lives in LA, which is pretty freaking diverse, too.

  3. Halfwit

    @Lucas Jensen: True, and wasn’t his entire comeback pretty much predicated on his appreciation for, and acceptance by, the cholos in the hispanic neighborhoods of LA?

  4. nulldevice

    Doesn’t he live in Rome now? He’s more of an immigrant than anybody.

  5. OrangeAlert

    ‘a rush and a push and the country is theirs’. oh, mozz. for me, nothing tops ‘all reggae music is vile’. it’s funny cuz it’s true.

    i have to admit, i went to england and had no idea where i was…turned out to be a rendition mix up.

  6. Whigged

    He’s just a little sad today – it is a Thursday. Give him a break.

  7. Jfrankparnell

    De Tocqueville would blush

  8. brownham

    there is more to this story than meets the eye…

  9. Maura Johnston

    @brownham: So spill it.

  10. raihala

    Over at True to You (Morrissey’s sort-of-official Web site), he posted letters back and forth from his manager and the NME’s editor and writer. It’s juicy stuff although to be honest, I don’t think either party emerges looking all that good.

  11. SuperUnison

    Jess, I can’t emphasize enough how thoroughly you were outdone by Stereogum in the arena of covering this story like a reasonable adult instead of a lazy snark monger.

  12. La Mareada

    @Halfwit: Is his appreciation for them OR their appreciation for him?

  13. janine

    @SuperUnison: You may be right, but I keep thinking, “Someone here has looked at Stereogum in the last 18 months? Gross.”

  14. busdriverstu

    @Audif Jackson Winters III: So did you listen to the rest of the song or just jump straight to the “England for the English” part?

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