Clarkson’s Driving Offence

Where political correctness abounds, thankfully Jeremy Clarkson is there as the antidote. Newspaper commentator and host of the premier car telly programme Top Gear, Clarkson just says what he means. I don’t always agree with him, but I’m glad for his frankness.

On an episode of the show last year, Clarkson opined that the Daihatsu Copen was “a bit gay.” He actually only repeated the words of a member of the studio audience, but then he added, “Yes, very ginger beer.” This is apparently Cockney rhyming slang for queer. So Ofcom, the media watchdog (whatever that means), have ruled that he criticised the car by describing it as homosexual. Apparently you cannot describe a car as homosexual. I can only guess this is because same-sex attracted cars are offended by this.

Ofcom said, “In the context, there was no justification for using the word in this way.” That’s because in this country you aren’t allowed to just say what you think. You have to justify your choice of words to the PC police.

And cars not being able to speak for themselves because of their lack of, well, speech mechanisms, gay people special interest groups have had to come to their defence.   A spokeslesbian for Stonewall said, “We’re glad to see that Ofcom has censured Jeremy Clarkson for the use of the word gay, in what was clearly meant in a derogatory way.”

“There was no doubt that it was being used in the sense of ‘homosexual’ and was capable of giving offence,” said Fraser Steel, the BBC head of editorial complaints.

Clarkson’s reported response shows just how seriously he takes this: “It wasn’t a gay car – it was actually a bit lesbian.”


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