‘It’s a national poison. Take some heroin or something.’
More than 30,000 people have backed a petition calling for British Airways to stop offering its passengers a copy of the Daily Mail.
The petition started by Greg Sayer states:
“It is ironic that our national carrier gives out a paper which is so xenophobic and critical of most things that are not home grown.
“What must many of the overseas visitors think of some of the anti-european and other headlines that they read when flying into the UK.
“All British Airways is doing is keeping up the sales levels of a newspaper that could not be objective if it tried to be and one that then has the hypocrisy to question the integrity of the BBC.”
Comments on the petition, which is nearing its goal of 35,000 signatures, include: “Why would you insult your international customers with this loathsome, insulting, rubbish?”
Another reads: “The Daily Mail does not reflect opinions of ‘the people’. It is against democracy and the rule of law.”
The paper has been hammered by commentators in recent weeks following its coverage of the Calais child refugee story and after referring to one of the judges who decided Theresa May does not have the power to trigger Article 50 without approval.
Alastair Campbell has tweeted his support for the ban.
“Assuming I have not been able to get there first and cover up the Mails with Financial Times or any other freebies on offer – or bin them, as is my admittedly childish wont – I watch as fellow passengers approach and glance at the front-page mix of screaming headlines and soft teasers for features or giveaways inside,” he wrote.
Campbell claimed that Virgin boss Richard Branson supports his campaign to rid Virgin Atlantic flights of the Mail, “but those who run his airline day to day insist the passengers want it”.
He also spoke of the frustration of watching readers enjoying the newspaper: “I want to take them by the neck – indeed, sometimes I do take them by the eyeball, and I ask: ‘Why are you reading that shit? It’s a national poison. Take some heroin or something.’”