Springer Show Offends Christians

I came across this on the beebs news site. The gist of the article is how the beebs governors decided not to uphold complaints received about the Jerry Springer musical, but what bothers me most is the increasing number of attempts to censor television, radio, the stage and other entertainment mediums on religious grounds.

Clearly following the success of the Sikhs in Birmingham in having Behzti removed from the stage, the Christians are jumping on the bandwagon. I’ve only heard about the Jerry Springer musical, but thats not the point here. The article talks about the number of complaints that the beeb received both before and after the show was broadcast and how the governors decided not to uphold them. Whats interesting is that more complaints were received BEFORE the show had aired (55,000) than after (8,000).

Wow… 55,000 people knew it would offend them before seeing it. How did they know? Had they seen it before? Heard about it from friends? Had it suggested to them that it may offend their religion? As far as I’m concerned, only one of those is a valid reason to complain… so thats an awful lot of people who’d seen it before. Of course, I doubt that this is the case… I’d suggest its more likely that they had been brainwash… oops that it had been suggested to them that it may offend their religious values (have I mentioned before about religion being mind control for the masses… for people too weak to form their own opinions and views on life and its meaning?).

So, here we have a supposedly tolerant religion trying to censor what the majority of the people who watch the beeb can see. Lets take a typical viewing figure… for the sake of argument, we’ll go with 3 million. 55,000 is a tiny 1.83% of that. So what about the other 98.17% of the beeb viewing populace? Are we not adult enough to make up our own minds?

If you don’t like what is going to be shown on the telly, unless some git has hidden your remote, you can change channels… thats an absolutely amazing fact isn’t it… and guess what… there are at least 4 other channels you can watch falls off chair in amazement

As far as I’m concerned, you can take your religious spiel and shove it. You (meaning the Christians behind this campaign against the show and the Sikhs behind the protest in Birmingham and any other religious group) are basically censoring (or attempting) to censor what we can watch and go and see at the theatre or cinema. Its amazing how practically all religions claim tolerance and yet they are all the most intolerant when it comes to someone elses opinions and views about their religion.

But the debate over the Springer show takes a new twist with this choice quote from the Christian Institute…

The group said the programme breached the BBC’s charter and broke the Human Rights Act by discriminating against Christians.

You have GOT to be kidding… so a show is now capable of violating the Human Rights Act? How does the show discriminate against Christians? Did it say ‘bomb christians’, ‘blow up their churches’, ‘kick them in the street’, ‘burn the bible’… I doubt it very much… had it done so I would have agreed that it shouldn’t be shown as it would have been inciting religious hatred. As for Christians being discriminated against… I suggest a quick forray into history… The Crusades anyone? All in the name of Jesus, so its OK! NOT!

And of course, not forgetting this little nugget from the Evangelical Alliance…

viewers would be “bewildered” by the decision.

“We are deeply disappointed that the BBC felt able to set aside the strong and sustained objections from such a volume of viewers.”

‘Bewildered’… ‘Disappointed’… I’d have been bewildered and disappointed had the beeb listened to your views and decided against showing it. As I pointed out above… 55,000 is only 1.83% of 3 million and only 0.001% of the total population. How is that ‘such a volume of viewers’… even at 1 million viewers its still only 5.5%. I know these people pay their TV licence, but from time to time, the beeb shows stuff that someone somewhere will find offensive. Its the nature of the beast. It has to provide a range of programs for a very broad range of people so its innevitable that from time to time this sort of controversy will arise, but trying to censor the beeb in the name of your own religious views is completely wrong.

The second article is mainly feedback from the public after the event… I’ve mentioned the TV licence above and its quite interesting how many of the complainants also talk about the licence fee and how their money shouldn’t be spent on shows that they find offensive.

I am extremely offended by the portrayal of Jesus Christ. A person’s religious belief is a fundamental human right and others should have the courtesy to respect their belief. The BBC take my licence fee and I feel that they have abused my rights by broadcasting this programme which portrays the image of Jesus Christ in this disrespectful manner.

First point… how do you know how Christ was protrayed? You must have watched despite the advanced warning that it may be offensive. You made that decision… if I know or think that something is going to offend me I don’t watch… I turn over or turn off. I’m guessing that for some reason, as a Christian, you were unable to make that choice and as such remained firmly rooted in your seat unable to reach for the remote during the entire show. Second point… religious belief is a fundamental human right… so too is freedom of speech and artistic expression. And as a side note… its not a right… its a gift. Given to us by many people long since dead who suffered so that we may not. As for freedom of speech and artistic expression… the writers of this show are only using their rights to express their views. Third point… others should have the courtesy to respect their belief… true, but the same could be said for those of you out there who force their religious views on those of us who don’t want them… programs like Songs of Praise (which is incidentally broadcast on BBC 1 at prime time on a Sunday evening, unlike the Springer show which was shown late on a Saturday night I believe on BBC 2) for example and of course Jehovahs Witnesses knocking on the door. How bloody annoying is that… isn’t that a violation of my human rights? I don’t want to be bombarded with religious clap trap yet still it is forced upon me by various means.

As for your licence fee… currently a colour TV licence costs £121. By my reckoning, that works out at about 33p a day or 0.02p per minute. So, if we assume that the offending show was on for 2 hours, thats a grand total of 2.4p. Now look at it the other way… My licence fee is the same 0.02p per minute. Songs of Praise runs for 35 minutes every Sunday… it offends me because it is an overtly religious display that occupies my television and uses my licence fee… it costs 0.7p every Sunday, so last year, its chewed its way through approximately 36.4p of my licence fee. So as far as I’m concerned, you can keep your feelings… the beeb abuses my rights every single week, but do I complain?

Another quote…

No is the simple answer. If people want to watch this type of entertainment, can it be at their expense, as I do not think it should be supported by the BBC at my expense.

I do find this type of comment so laughable, that I’m almost willing to say that if the people who made these two comments get in touch, I will personally reimburse their 2.4p (it might be a little off 2.4p as I’m not sure I can cut a penny piece accurately enough), although thinking about it, your licence fee doesn’t just cover a single channel, so if we say the 15 major TV and radio channels the beeb runs, its more like 0.16p and the cost of Songs of Praise to me is more like 2.4p.

And another…

Not only Christian organisations objected. Many people objected on the grounds of moral decency. The show has already been aired, the BBC will be prosecuted and eventually lose their public charter.

Moral decency? Its a show… a comedy (I’m guessing based on what I’ve read)… shown after the watershed, with ample warning that it would offend some people and that it contained strong language. In terms of morals and whats right and wrong, generally, I’ve found that people over a certain age… I call them adults… are (unless they are incredibly easily lead) more than capable of deciding what, in their mind, is right and wrong, and as a consequence are able to make an informed choice about what is morally acceptable and what is not. Moral decency is challenged more in a typical day on the news than it is by one showing of this particular show. Everyweek, murders, rape, theft, beatings… and of course not forgetting war… much of which is caused by differing religions and people to biggotted to live side by side. Oh how tolerant religion is.

I cannot believe the BBC, a channel which I have respected for being accepting of all religions, has broadcasted this blasphemous and disrespectful show. I am also appalled that the BBC have not publicised the fact that there were peaceful protests outside their studios across the country on Saturday evening, they have had no problem parading the fact that people who work for the BBC have received death threats for broadcasting Jerry Springer – The Opera. The BBC has lost all the respect I have ever had for them. I believe the BBC should issue an apology for offending so many people (not just Christians) and for broadcasting such a disgusting programme on their channel.

By not broadcasting it, it could be said that they would have offended those like me, who don’t consider themselves religious. I may have wanted to watch it and you may have succeeded in having the show removed from the schedule… how is that right? As for publicising the fact that a lot of fanatics were peacefully protesting? Peaceful protests go on all over the place at all sorts of times… we don’t hear about them all, but publicising the fact that BBC staff received death threats… shows the level to which some of you will stoop to try and get your point across. What is it the bible says, good will to all men (or something like that) or ‘thou’ shalt not kill’… ring any bells? Oh, I forgot… as a Christian, you can randomly quote and abide by the bible as and when it suits you and forget it when it doesn’t. Those of us without such mind control… *oops* moral guidance are clearly incapable of deciding whats right and wrong… although I have to say I generally think threatening people with death for speaking/showing something you disagree with is… erm…. let me think… WRONG!

However you decorate it, religion has been used twice in the last 6 months to censor (or attempt to) entertainment. I have to ask… where will it end? By trying to remove or removing shows from view you are effectively forcing your religious beliefs on people and I for one don’t want them. I am, like the majority of the population of the UK an adult, more than capable of deciding for myself what is offensive and what isn’t. Just because its not your cup of tea, doesn’t mean its not mine. So please, keep your religion to yourself and stop trying to censor the media to suit your own ends.

Story Links:-
BBC rejects Springer complaints
Should BBC have shown Jerry Springer opera?

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