Lovely but racist!

By Ligali Media Network | Wed 1 September 2004

The BBC broadcast racist comments, apparently in the name of comedy.


'There are far too many African children in the world.. we ought to strangle them at birth to stop them coming over here in their thousands when they grow up. [They] look like horrible little monkeys the lot of them….little chocolate monsters, munching on bananas all day’.
Ethel in BBC 'comedy' Alison and Maude

These were the words broadcast last month during a so-called comedy on the station the BBC pitch as the home of intelligent speech (Radio Four). In a throwback to the overtly racist BBC programming era the BBC programme complaints unit denied the words were offensive and wrote ‘the unacceptable nature of Ethel's views was made clear; she was described as lovely but racist’. Eastenders actress June Brown played the character of Ethel in Author Dave Lambs drama Alison and Maude. Interestingly Johnny Speight , the creator of the xenophobic BBC character Alf Garnet believed that ‘[d]espite appearances, his [Till death Us Do Part] series was never a racist comedy’.

June


Transcript of Audio

Dave: The company that makes them does terrible things to children in Africa.

Ethel: Whose been hurting children?

Mark: Er.. No one Ethel

E: children are the most precious thing in the world,

D&M: Really…..

E: oh yes, we can learn a lot from children, there lovely little faces lighting up the day, there aint a bit of nastiness in them is there when their little, I reckon its cause they are still so close to God, they’ve only just come into the world haven’t they, they can still hears Gods voice, that’s why people call them little angels cause that what they are, lovely little angels who still talk to God , I don’t understand how anyone could ever hurt children.

M: Yeah.. Dave was just saying how this Crisp company are hurting African children.

E: African children, Well that’s different, there’s far too many of them horrible little things in the world, we ought to strangle them at birth [to] stop them coming over here in their thousands when they grow up. [They] look like horrible little monkeys the lot of them.
E: Little chocolate monsters, munching on bananas all day, make my flesh crawl.




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