Archive for July, 2006

Getting used to it

Now that the national tour of Jerry Springer: The Opera has come to an end and, according to Stewart Lee, is unlikely to be staged anywhere ever again, all that remains is the film of the show. This is set to get its first public airing in the border town of Melrose in an art cinema called The Wynd.

Not much dissent is expected. Council Chairman Willie Windram:

I think Melrose people pride themselves on a level of cultural sophistication and some will be quite chuffed the town is hosting the first local public screening.
I’m sure Borderers are more than capable of making up their own minds what they should and should not see

Only the local vicar expressed his “sadness”. He trotted out the usual self-pitying clichés, but there was a welcome note of resignation in his words:

I have to say I think it isn’t good for the Borders to have Jesus Christ trashed in its arts theatres and to follow in the footsteps of Christ’s detractors. If some other religions were similarly depicted, this show would never have seen the light of day, but unfortunately Christians are becoming used to being vilified.

Congratulations, Christians, on becoming used to it.

Even Stephen “Dog Shit” Green appears to have given up the idea of prosecuting the BBC for blasphemy. It is now over 15 months since he sent out his begging letter asking for donations to fund the prosecution whose chance of success was, according to the NSS, “virtually nil”.

What, we wonder, has happened to all the money raised specifically for this purpose? If Mr Green has indeed bottled out of taking on the Beeb, will all the donations be returned?

Christian Voice mocked at EuroPride

The censorious bigots of Christian Voice are being challenged wherever they go nowadays. Last weekend’s EuroPride march was no exception when, for the first time, they were confronted by a small-but-perfectly-formed counter protest.

More pictures on Flickr.


The Daily Mail reports that art-house porn film Destricted is to be shown at the Tate Modern, upsetting the usual crowd.

According to the Tate website,

The seven films are explicit in content, highlighting controversial issues about the representation of sexuality in art, opening up for debate the question of whether art can be disguised as pornography, or vice versa, and leaving the viewer free to choose his or her own line through these intersections of art and sexuality.

Adults free to choose? God and Beyer forbid!

By showing this film, the Tate is giving porn an air of respectability. It is normalising it

Says the Sage of Ashford and director of Mediawatch-UK.

Lifestyle Extra has more quotes:

This is more evidence that the Board is giving into pressure from the industry and failing to represent the public interest.

This is also further evidence of the urgent need to strengthen the Obscene Publications Act, and while the Home Office is delaying the results of a consultation on the subject, the BBFC is getting more extreme pornography under the wire before the government takes action.

John Beyer wants pornography viewers to be imprisoned for up to three years. Because porn breaks up families, you see. And prison terms don’t.

The film has had pretty bad reviews, but sounds a hoot. Marco Brambilla (director of Demolition Man) contributes a fast-moving two-minute montage of money shots. Sam Taylor-Wood’s contribution features a cowboy masturbating in Death Valley (where “safe sex” presumably means sunblock). And Matthew Barney’s fifteen-minute segment depicts an act which John Beyer himself might derive some benefit from – a man having sex with the lubricated drive shaft of a customised deforestation vehicle.

Bollocks to Blair

(From The Times) Two stallholders at a Norfolk fair have each been fined £80 for displaying t-shirts bearing the words “Bollocks to Blair”.

According to Norfolk police:

The notices were issued under Section 5 of the Public Order Act as the language was deemed to cause harassment, distress or alarm at an event, where a cross section of people were present including families and young children who may have found the displays offensive. Police did receive a complaint from a member of the public.

This is not the first time police have acted against someone for offending the Rev Blair with this t-shirt. In September last year a 20-year-old gamekeeper from Goucester was arrested at the Midlands Game Fair for wearing it. She was forced to cover up with a friend’s coat.

Bollocks to that.

Praying for censorship

Mediawatch-UK’s Summer Newsbrief has just been released. It doesn’t contain much of interest – just the usual self-congratulatory list of “Massah” John Beyer’s media appearances, and a reaffirmation of the perennial confusion between correlation and cause which is their raison d’être.

And a prayer, which we reprint here in full:

Creator God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, enlighten the eyes of our minds, that we may see the path that You have mapped out for us.

Help us always to do Your will, not ours. Give us the grace and determination to speak out against those things that are offensive to You and to us in today’s media-driven society.

You have brought us together as this group to fight for truth, decency and honesty, to protect society – especially young people – from the insidious harm which pervades our world. May we be always aware of the trust You have placed in us, and be strong in living our principles.

Guide us as we seek to discern out future, and send us many more eyes and voices to help in the work which our founder Mary Whitehouse began.

We make this prayer through Christ our Lord.

Oh, so it’s God’s will they’re doing, not theirs. Why didn’t they tell us that before? Maybe we wouldn’t have made so much fun of them if we knew.

It is an interesting fact that if you are a censorious prude, the god you worship is highly likely to be censorious prude too. Similarly, if you are a radical liberal, your god will share your radical liberal views. And if you are a murderous jihadist, so too will be your god.

Is this just a correlation, or could there be some causal factor at work there?