I tried very hard, I really did, but I just haven't been able to escape conversations about Jeremy Clarkson's most recent 'controversy', if you can even call it that. A term often used by Spectator columnist, Rod Liddle, could be used to label those who are 'offended' by Clarkson's recent gaff as 'faux liberals'. These are the people who use all aspects of modern technology to find something somewhere that happened, solely so they can be offended by it. They will then pass these things on to their faux liberal friends so they can be offended by it too, because that's the IN thing these days. It's cool to be offended, but what's Jezza done this time that's caused this entire furor?
Well, there is some footage that was filmed by the BBC for an episode of Top Gear. This footage had been edited out of the episode and was described by the Mirror, in reporting this controversy, as 'unseen footage'. In this unseen footage which is, thanks to those reactionary chaps at our favourite tabloid, now seen quite a lot - he is seen choosing between two cars whilst reciting one of the older versions of the Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe nursery rhyme. The version used by Clarkson contains the line 'Catch the n***er by the toe' (I self-censored, because you can't recite things verbatim these days without the faux liberals branding you a racist).
So let's get this straight. In an unaired scene filmed by the BBC, Jezza recited an old version of a nursery rhyme, which was not broadcast, and he faces the sack over it. Why? Thankfully, in a poll put on the Mirror's website with a question of Should the BBC sack Jeremy Clarkson for using the n-word?, a large majority have voted no.So there is some sense in the world. But why does this controversy still prevail? It wasn't broadcast, nobody died, and the video itself was only made known to the general public thanks to newspapers needing to fill a bit of space. So what if people are offended by his words? Are these people totally incapable of getting on with their lives unless everybody tells them how wonderful they are and how they accept their diversity?
Be warned, if you watch this video and have the mentality of an infant, you may be offended.
Is Jeremy Clarkson a racist? He might be, I don't know him, and as an adult with the ability of non-reactionary critical thought, I won't make such a judgment about him based on a piece of unaired footage in which he used a word that he clearly tried to mumble anyway. Should the n-word be an acceptable word to use on broadcast television? Of course not, and I expect the BBC agree, which is why that scene didn't make it through the final edit. Was Jeremy wrong to use such a word? I actually don't think he was. Of course, he used the outdated version of the nursery rhyme (a version I actually didn't know existed until this media frenzy), but all he was doing was reciting a nursery rhyme, how does that automatically allow the general public to brand someone a racist?
Those on the side of the argument that he should be sacked will likely bring up the argument that some may find the use of the word 'distressing'. In an attempt to add some absurd legitimacy to their article, the Mirror had lawyers examine the footage to see whether the use of the word could have broken the law. One lawyer remarked that, should a crewmember have found the use of the word 'distressing', he could have fallen foul of the law. Really? Here's an old saying that some people may have heard: 'sticks and stones may break my bones, but names shall never hurt me.' When did that turn in to 'sticks and stones may break my bones, but if you offend me, I'll get the police onto you'?
If you don't like Jeremy Clarkson or Top Gear, don't watch it. If you don't like Jeremy's political views, don't read his Sunday Times column. If you are so offended by Jeremy's use of the n-word in a video clip that you wouldn't have seen or even known existed hadn't it been for the Mirror, you should probably go and see someone about getting the help you so clearly need. I don't write this blog as a fan of Jeremy's or even a regular viewer of Top Gear, I write this in the hope that common sense will - eventually - prevail, and people will move on from such a stupid excuse for a 'race row'. Of course the faux liberal lynch mobs who have nothing better to do with their time won't be happy until they draw blood, which is ironic considering the UK is still supposed to be a country that operates on basic democratic principles such as free speech. Funny old world, isn't it?
Here he is begging for forgiveness. Will you forgive him? Of course not, his head isn't currently on a spike.
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