January 9th, 2005

SB - Max - Oy

I've inherited Lorna's rantivirus.

So, Jerry Springer: the Opera was on BBC2 tonight.  I've taped it and will be watching it tomorrow.  Actually, we nearly saw the show in London back in October but decided there wasn't enough time given everything else I wanted to do, so I'm quite pleased the Beeb decided to show it.  Even though they nearly didn't.

Oh, for fuck's sake...  (Link from x_ariadne_x's journal.)

Okay.  I'm an atheist, which is fairly common knowledge.  I'm not anti-Christian, or even anti-religion. I think faith and belief is a wonderful, powerful thing.  I know lots of lovely people from lots of different religions.  But they're not annoying evangelist extremist idiots trying to force their beliefs onto the rest of us.  And this rant is going to be incredibly incoherent as I'm tired and trying to fight off a cold and failing horrendously, but bear with it.  I'm not intentionally trying to upset anyone and I apologise if such happens; it's nothing personal to anyone who reads this.  (And if frightened wants to take this and run with it, I'll let her. ;) )

Some points.

Firstly: burning your TV licences.  Yeah, that's a good plan.  You'll be the first to complain when you get a huge-ass fine.  And really, it doesn't do anything.  The BBC probably couldn't give a damn whether or not your TV license is intact or a pile of ash, because you've already paid for it anyway, and they're not going to make a special list of people who've burnt their licences then remember not to fine them when the time comes to check people have got one.  It's not a protest, it's pathetic attention-seeking.  You are not martyrs, and in all liklihood, the executives up in their warm offices are staring out of the window laughing at you while you freeze your backsides off, and are about three seconds away from throwing a fire extinguisher out of the window in the hope it knocks one of you unconscious.

Secondly: "The use of foul language together with mocking Jesus Christ and portraying him wearing a nappy with sequins is highly offensive to Christians and we felt that it was totally wrong," apparently.  Is that a royal 'we'?  Just how many protesters are there in all of this anyway?  A whole country's-worth of church-goers?  I doubt it.  Most likely it's a few fundamentalists with nothing better to do than find things to complain about as being 'offensive' and 'wrong'.  Guess what?  Not everyone cares what you think.  Some people like foul language and obvious visual humour.  Get over it, and stop trying to shove your morals into our faces.

Thirdly: "He said the BBC would not risk upsetting minority faiths like Islam or Buddhism."  He's right, they wouldn't.  And they're not trying to upset the sodding Christians, either.  The BBC didn't produce the show; they didn't write it, and they weren't responsible for Jerry Springer's chat show in the first place.  They're not sitting there thinking, "oh, let's show this, it'll really upset those Christians."  They're just trying to provide an entertainment service, for those who cannot afford to go to London and see the show live, for those who've already seen it, for those who are morbidly curious.  They're highlighting the fact that this is a unique, interesting show that, yes, may not be to everybody's taste.    Deal the Hell with it.

Fourthly: "Because we are Christians they think we are fair game for any insults..."  When you act like morons, what more do you expect?  Shut the Hell up and follow your faith quietly like everyone else in the world, and we'll leave you alone.

Fifthly: "Religious leaders fear the hundreds of swear words the Springer show contains would cause offence when broadcast."  It's on after the watershed.  Also, human beings have this amazing little thing called 'free will', even though half the time they choose to ignore that fact.  Don't like it, don't watch it.  Yes, it's really that simple.  The television has an off-switch.  There are at least four alternative channels to choose from.  Nobody is forcing you to sit down and watch it.

Sixthly: I get the distinct impression that most of the hoo-hah is revolving around the fact that it's being shown on the BBC.  If it were any other channel - Hell, even another less-establsihed BBC channel like BBC3 or 4 - then the level of complaints wouldn't be so high.  If it was on Channel 5, nobody would bat an eyelid.  But because it's the almighty holy BBC, which - of course - never shows anything with swearing in, never shows anything controversial, suddenly everyone's up in arms about it.

Seventhly: leave my nightly entertainment the Hell alone.  Do I come into your Sunday communion or your carol services and complain that they're anti-atheist?  No, I don't.  Just because Christianity is one of the largest established religions in the world does not give you the right to inflict your beliefs on those of us that choose not to follow them.  I do not want to be saved; I will not be going to Hell, because that's your belief, not mine.  Go pray for someone else's salvation.  Put some of that energy you've been using to burn your TV licences and shout about it into, say, raising money for the tsunami appeals.  Do something useful for a change, and maybe we'll stop "insulting" you.

I think I should probably stop there.

This rant is brought to you by the letters O and Y, and is a product of having redisovered the truly terrifying Chick tracts last night.  Thank you and goodnight.

And, again, it's not directed at anybody I know. :)