Eurovision Song Contest and Patriotism

An Orwellian ‘Big Brother’ moment out of Azerbaijan:

Forty-three people in Azerbaijan who voted for a song by neighbouring Armenia in the Eurovision Song Contest have been questioned by the police.

One man told the BBC he was accused of being unpatriotic and a “potential security threat”, after he sent a text backing Armenia’s song, Jan Jan.

Although amusing, these sorts of stories always make me wonder about the mindset of people who achieve nationally significant positions of power. Is their grip on power so tenuous that they need to monitor who their citizenry vote for in a song contest? Are the government really using resources to read everyone’s phone texts? How distorted has their sense of patriotism become?

For those not familiar with the Eurovision Song Contest, it is an annual music event that has been running since 1956. Each European country enters a song to compete against all the other nations’ songs. Long-time EU members now seem to treat the contest as something of a joke, seeing who can enter the most ridiculous contestant. New inductees into the wider European community, however, tend to take things a little too seriously, perceiving victory as a mode of national advancement.

I could understand if this had been a visit from the Taste Police. Here’s the song—Jan Jan—that the 43 Azerbaijanis voted for:

These people should get life for voting for this tripe. Appalling!

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3 Responses

  1. […] from the Bartender says the incident is Orwellian, but adds that the song didn't deserve being voted for in the first place. Although amusing, these sorts of stories always make me wonder about the mindset of people who get […]

  2. […] Song Contest and Patriotism update Posted on September 21, 2009 by Duffster Following up on our earlier story about the harassment of Azerbaijani citizens who voted for the song performed by neighboring Armenia […]

  3. […] we found out in an earlier post, rather than encouraging cultural ties, these contests can be taken waaaaaayyyy too seriously by some countries, especially those places with inferiority complexes or insecure political […]

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