Britain's Defiant Twitter Humor Proves They Are Not "Reeling" After Attacks

Photo: AP Photo.
The U.K. was hit by two terrorist attacks in two weeks, and no one argues that the country is in mourning. What the British would like to debate, however, is the assumption that they are "reeling," after what happened on and near the London Bridge on Saturday and in Manchester in May. That word, which the New York Times used in a front page headline on Sunday morning, just doesn't jibe with their "stiff upper lip" mentality.
J.K. Rowling was one of the first to take the Times to task for this phrasing, tweeting, "The thugs who mowed down innocent people would love to think of the UK 'reeling' but it isn't," she wrote in response to the paper's tweet. "Don't confuse grief with lack of courage."
Author Robert Harris shared a photo of the Times' front page, saying, "This sort of hyped-up headline does the terrorists' job for them. UK isn't 'reeling.' "
English Twitter soon took up the cause, inventing the hashtag #ThingsThatLeaveBritainReeling that has been trending through Sunday. Those things do not actually include terrorism.
There are many tea-related suggestions:
Quite a few other references to British comfort food.
Jabs at American pronunciations of words.
The struggle of the extremely polite.
After a van drove onto the sidewalk of the London Bridge, assailants with knives attacked people on the street on Saturday night, killing seven and injuring 48, which is no laughing matter. But as London Mayor Sadiq Khan said, residents refuse to be cowed by this incident. This is, after all, the country that invented the phrase "Keep Calm and Carry On," printed on posters to be used in the event of a German invasion during World War II.
Many posted photos of this guy, whose response to the attack on Saturday was to flee with his pint of beer still in his hand. Whatever his intentions at the time, he has become the embodiment of defiance in the face of terror.
Britians kept the hashtag going with these quips.
One person noted it was trending above the attack in the U.K. Talk about keeping calm and carrying on.
But if you think these Brits are laughing at the attack, think again.
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