Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Carol Thatcher - an issue of free speech?

The Telegraph nows says that One Show insiders say that Carol Thatcher was referring to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga when she made her green room "Golliwog" remark - not Gael Monfils as was reported elsewhere earlier.

Thatcher's agent is now demanding an apology from the BBC. They (the Thatcher camp) just don't get it, do they?

Is this a matter of free speech (as mentioned at Himmelgarten Cafe)? Hardly. As far as I am concerned Thatcher can repeat her jibe wherever she likes as long as she stays within the law (she might have trouble with Equalities legislation). This is an issue of common decency. If you make a remark which clearly offends, you should apologise unreservedly and move on. It is also a matter for the BBC as an equal opportunities employer. They have a duty to uphold proper standards on behalf of current and future potential employees. I think they have made the right decision. How on earth could the BBC hold its head up as an equal opportunities employer if they don't act decisively on this sort of complaint from an employee?

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