UK Nutter News

 2014: Jan-March



 Update: The Modern World Sits in Judgment of Religion...

Transport for London, unsurprisingly prefers not to carry adverts featuring religious satire. And christians do not understand why


Link Here 31st March 2014  full story: Transport for London Censors...Advert censorship
antony micallef kill your idol There is an exhibition at St Marylebone Church of the work of 20 artists' representations of the Stations of the Cross. Throughout Lent, some of these have been approved by TfL to appear on the London Underground.

But not Antony Micallef's Kill Your Idol , a representation of the first station, where Jesus is condemned to death, this time by an X-Factor style panel of judges.

A spokesperson for TfL said the poster was rejected because it did not comply with the firm's advertising policy. She pointed to a clause that concerns causing widespread or serious offence to members of the public and another referring to advertisements that do not comply with the law or incite someone to break the law.

It is the view of St Marylebone's Rector, the Reverend Canon Stephen Evans, that this work raises:

Important contemporary questions about the fickleness and shallowness of fame and celebrity, success and failure. About who has the power to say just who is going to be a 'hit' and who a 'miss'.

It is not an image that could cause offence, it's not obscene; it is just a very, very strange decision.

But of course the decision is nothing to do with nuances of offence. It's just that everybody knows that religion and satire simply do not mix, and anything coming anywhere close is simply best avoided for fear of either violence or else a station load of moaning minnies. It seems that religion these days is not really very welcome in the normal world, it causes far too much trouble in the world.

 

  A Fashion for Taking Offence...

HM pulls a vest featuring a star and skull at the request of jewish organisation


Link Here 29th March 2014
vest star skull H&M has pulled a vest from sale after receiving complaints that it was anti-Semitic. The top featured a jewish style star emblazoned with a skull. A spokesperson for H&M said:

Please accept our most sincere apologies that this has caused offence. We understand the criticism and in response to this have decided to remove the T-shirt from all stores with immediate effect.

Mark Gardner, director of communications at a jewish organisation called Community Security Trust, said that fashion brands need to be more mindful when deciding on religious-inspired prints.

Fashion statements can work in diverse ways and if you randomly saw somebody wearing this in the street, then you might well believe it to be anti-Semitic and purchased from a neo-Nazi website or similar. It is for H&M to decide if they care about such things, but would they risk such reactions with a Christian crucifix or a Muslim crescent?

 

 Comment: A Bafta for the Makers of Grand Theft Auto...

And the fine achievement is greeted with nothing but miserable whinges from the likes of Mediawatch-UK


Link Here 17th March 2014  full story: Grand Theft Auto...Grand Theft Auto brings out the nutters
Grand Theft Auto Xbox 360 The British Academy of Film and Television Arts has honoured Rockstar Games, the company behind the Grand Theft Auto series, with its illustrious Fellowship award. They will now be presented with the prize for their revolutionary approach to games . They have also been commended for bringing the medium to the masses .

But this fine achievement is met only with a barrage of whinges from moral campaigners, courtesy of course, the Daily Mail.

Pippa Smith of Safer Media, a religious campaigner against violence, sex and bad language in the media, said:

We have had a lot of concerns about Grand Theft Auto, and we would not agree with this at all. A Bafta Fellowship is a very prestigious award and it is giving out a very dangerous message.

Grand Theft Auto is obviously hugely popular and makes an awful lot of money, so as far as the gaming industry is concerned, it is a big money spinner.

But it is horrifying that they are being recognised in this way. We know for sure that people are affected by the violence in these games, and in this particular case players are even encouraged to kill prostitutes.

Vivienne Pattinson, director of lobby group Mediawatch UK, said:

My biggest criticism is that we know that children who are a lot younger than the age limit of these games are playing them. Gaming companies have a very important role to play in making sure that under-age children are not exposed to these games.

They are marketed in places where children are likely to see them, on the sides of school buses for example, and for Bafta to be giving them an award at a time when there is still a lot of work to be done in protecting children from this kind of violence is wrong.

I can appreciate the quality of these games are good. But we cannot just hold our hands up and say that the content doesn't matter.

Offsite Comment: GTA, The Baftas And How The Daily Mail Make Morons Like Mediawatch-uk Look Even More Ridiculous

the bothersome blog logo 17th March 2013. See comment from bothersomeblogger.wordpress.com

  So the Daily Mail is whipping up outrage over the Grand Theft Auto games being given a BAFTA award. This is a classic example of the Daily Mail trying to make outrage over absoloutly nothing. To demonstrate that there outrage and controversy they've wheeled out two of their favourite rent-a-quotes, Pippa Smith from Safermedia and Vivienne Pattison from Mediawatch-uk.

...Read the full comment

 

  Beware of the Dog...

Leeds students get all aggressive and yap about jokey greeting cards


Link Here 28th February 2014
beware of the dog greetings card Some greeting card companies have taken rude jokes to the point where they offend the easily offended.

Helena Brooks, a student at Leeds University, recently found a card on sale in her university union shop that read:

Beware of the dog. (She might look sexy in those hot pants but she's probably got Chlamydia.)

She then tweeted a picture of the offending card, with the message:

Is this really okay to be selling in Leeds Uni Union? For a union that's just banned page 3 how is this appropriate?

Her complaint racked up support and the university union eventually responded by deciding to remove the card, made by company Brainbox Candy. Mark Williams, a Brainbox Candy director, told a Telegraph contributor:

We certainly don't set out to make cards that are sexist or offensive, far from it. But often how far do you go? Our cards are meant to be fun and irreverent and certainly not meant to offend.

Offsite Comment: Leeds University's war on filth

28th February 2013. See  comment from  spiked-online.com

Spiked logo Student unions are becoming increasingly intent on mollycoddling students instead of treating them as adults capable of forming their own opinions. LUU is trying to be progressive by appealing to feminist sentiment and banning offensive material; in fact, it is just patronising and pandering to a bunch of prudes.

...Read the full comment

 

 Updated: Recommending Dark Horse by Katy Perry...

Petition claims music video is blasphemous


Link Here 28th February 2014
katy perry dark horse video A petition has been started to get Katy Perry's latest music video banned. The fantasy video for the song Dark Horse includes a necklace disintegrating in a flash of CGI lighting effects. Apparently the necklace has script bearing the name of the Muslim religious character, Allah.

Shazad Iqbal of Bradford, England, condemned the video claiming that the image of the  disintegrating necklace is somehow blasphemous and should be banned from YouTube. The petition states:

Such goes to show, that blasphemy is clearly conveyed in the video, since Katy Perry (who appears to be representing an opposition of God) engulfs the believer and the word God in flames,

This is the reason for lodging the petition so that people from different walks of life, different religions and from different parts of the world, agree that the video promotes blasphemy, using the name of God in an irrelevant and distasteful manner would be considered inappropriate by any religion.

By Tuesday afternoon, the petition had been electronically signed by more than 42,000 people, a number dwarfed by the 30 million views the video has garnered on YouTube since Feb. 20.

Update: Necklace gets removed but have muslims achieved any more 'respect'?

28th February 2013. See  article from  freethinker.co.uk

Today we learn that, although the video of Katy Perry's latest single has been cut by censors. The bit that was deemed "offensive" has been removed.  It showed the zapping of an Allah pendant worn by a character in the video.

Shazad Iqbal of Bradford set up a petition claiming this was tantamount to "blasphemy". More than 50,000 people signed the online petition, and now the petitioner is cock-a-hoop:

Guys I'm thrilled to let you all know the name of Allah has been removed from the 'Dark Horse' video we couldn't have done it without everyone's support so I thank each and every one of you deeply, our voices have been heard! God bless you all.

This clearly shows that our voice has been heard, having gained so much publicity on the matter and by getting everybody talking we have put the message out there that such inappropriate material will not be accepted.

 

  Recommending Dark Horse by Katy Perry...

Petition claims music video is blasphemous


Link Here 26th February 2014
katy perry dark horse video A petition has been started to get Katy Perry's latest music video banned. The fantasy video for the song Dark Horse includes a necklace disintegrating in a flash of CGI lighting effects. Apparently the necklace has script bearing the name of the Muslim religious character, Allah.

Shazad Iqbal of Bradford, England, condemned the video claiming that the image of the  disintegrating necklace is somehow blasphemous and should be banned from YouTube. The petition states:

Such goes to show, that blasphemy is clearly conveyed in the video, since Katy Perry (who appears to be representing an opposition of God) engulfs the believer and the word God in flames,

This is the reason for lodging the petition so that people from different walks of life, different religions and from different parts of the world, agree that the video promotes blasphemy, using the name of God in an irrelevant and distasteful manner would be considered inappropriate by any religion.

By Tuesday afternoon, the petition had been electronically signed by more than 42,000 people, a number dwarfed by the 30 million views the video has garnered on YouTube since Feb. 20.

 

 Extract: Twenty five years on from Rushdie...

And we are too frightened to say we are scared. By Nick Cohen


Link Here 21st February 2014  full story: Jesus and Mo...Atheist cartoons offend the easily offended

ch4 censored jesus and mo In my You Can't Read This Book , I gave 10 rules for fighting back against dictatorial regimes and movements. The simplest, and the most important was:

If you are frightened, at least have the guts to say so. Once one did not write the word liberal and add hypocrite . Since the Rushdie Affair, the reflex has become automatic. The worst aspect of the fear the ayatollahs spread was that Western intellectuals were afraid of admitting that they were afraid. If they had been honest, they would have forced society to confront the fact of censorship. As it was, their silence made the enemies of liberalism stronger.

...Read the full article

 

 Offsite Article: Freedom of speech: Is it my right to offend you?...


Link Here 3rd February 2014  full story: Jesus and Mo...Atheist cartoons offend the easily offended
Telegraph logo Fascinatingly detailed account of the religious censorship of the Jesus and Mo website

See article from independent.co.uk

 

 Updated: Reduced to Censorship...

Easily offended Ulster council censors the Reduced Shakespeare Company from staging The Bible: The Complete Word of God (Abridged)


Link Here 1st February 2014
Complete Word God Bible Abridged A comedy show about the Bible, which producers say has been endorsed by hundreds of clergy, has been axed from the Theatre at the Mill in Newtownabbey amid claims it was anti-Christian .

The Reduced Shakespeare Company was due to kick off its latest UK tour by presenting The Bible: The Complete Word of God (abridged) at the council-run venue. But earlier this month, calls for the show to be cancelled were made by DUP councillors.

The party's Robert Hill told UTV that members of the public had approached representatives asking them to get it stopped on the grounds that it was offensive.

UUP Mayor Fraser Agnew also told UTV:

There were a lot of people concerned about the nature of this play, that it was anti-Christian - and we have established indeed it was anti-Christian, he said.

I believe there's got to be some form of censorship, otherwise you'll have all sorts of things happening.

The show's producer Davey Naylor told UTV that the production had toured extensively around the world over the past 20 years. The company has even performed the show at the Jerusalem Festival in Israel without objection, he said, calling for people to come and see it before branding it unholy. This is the very first time in the almost-20year life of the show that a performance has been cancelled because of the complaints of a few.

Playwright Austin Tichenor, co-author of the script and one of the managing partners of the Reduced Shakespeare Company, said:

We find it quite staggering that this type of censorship still appears to flourish in the UK and would like to apologise to all the audience members who bought tickets and are therefore unable to see the show. We'd also like to thank everyone for the hundreds of messages of support we have received. It's a shame these voices are drowned out by the few dissenting, uninformed ones.

Update: Comedian Jake O'Kane wades in

25th January 2013. See  article from  bbc.co.uk . Thanks to Nick

Jake OKane Tear Comedy Tour One of NI's leading comedians has criticised the council zealots who have banned a play in County Antrim. Jake O'Kane said unionist councillors who took the decision weren't elected to be moral guardians . O'Kane said:

I haven't seen the play, and unfortunately I'll never be able to see the play because councillors have decided that we will not be allowed to see the play.

It's like getting in a time machine and they went back to before the Reformation and the Enlightenment.

There was £ 7m spent on this theatre, it opened in 2010, and they may as well close the doors. If they are going to be the moral guardians of what we see and don't see, that theatre is dead in the water.

We already have laws, we have hate speech laws, that dictate what the arts can and cannot do. If it is hateful, if it is against minorities, the laws are already there to censor that.

We don't need a bunch of unionist councillors in Newtownabbey deciding what we can or cannot go to see.

They call themselves moral guardians - they weren't elected to be moral guardians. We elected them to empty our bins, make sure the leisure centres were open - that's the powers they have.

They didn't put on their manifesto that they were going to decide what we can or cannot see.

Patrick Corrigan of Amnesty International said:

It is well established in international human rights law that the right to freedom of expression, though not absolute, is a fundamental right which may only be restricted in certain limited circumstances to do with the advocacy of hatred.

It is quite obvious that those circumstances are not met in the context of this work of comedy and thus that the cancelling of the play is utterly unjustified on human rights grounds.

Such interference with freedom of speech and artistic expression should be of concern to freedom lovers everywhere.

Update: Saddened by a culture of censorship

27th January 2013.See  article from  u.tv

caral ni chuilin Culture and Arts Minister Caral Ni Chuilin has described the cancellation of a controversial play about the Bible as disappointing:

I was disappointed to hear of the decision to cancel the production of The Bible: The complete Word of God (abridged). I know that the play has travelled extensively and been performed on the international stage for the past 20 years.

I am saddened that audiences here will not be offered the opportunity to see the performance and judge for themselves the virtues of the show.

I fully support the views of the Arts Council that the artist's right to freedom of expression should always be defended and that the arts have a role in promoting discussion and allowing space for disagreement and debate.

Update: Council shamed into revoking the ban

28th January 2013. See  article from  theguardian.com . Thanks to Nick

newtownabbey council logo A ban on a play which was claimed to be blasphemous has been lifted by a council in Northern Ireland .

Members of the artistic board at Newtownabbey, Co Antrim reversed an earlier vote, allowing the Reduced Shakespeare Company to now stage The Bible: The Complete Word of God at Theatre at the Mill, which is run by Newtownabbey borough council.

Councillors who backed the play claimed the ban made them look like a laughing stock.

Update: The inevitable protest

1st February 2013. See  article from  belfasttelegraph.co.uk

free presbyterian church logo 70 fundamentalist Christian protesters made their voices heard at the second sold-out night of the controversial play The Bible: The Complete Word Of God (Abridged) .

Members of the Free Presbyterian Church sang hymns and passed out leaflets at the entrance of the Theatre At The Mill in Newtownabbey as theatre-goers made their way to the play.

The protesters, led by Rev Brian McClung of the Newtownabbey Free Presbyterian Church, handed over a letter of protest to Newtownabbey Borough Council. McClung described it as perverse human nature that the play had sold so many tickets since opposition was raised. He said:

Primarily we are here tonight to stand up for the honour of God's word. We believe this play mocks the word of God.

We are offended because people are mocking the scriptures and we are here to show our offense. Supposedly the council and society is to have regard for minorities, but they don't seem to have much regard for evangelical Christians when it comes to things like this.

 

 Update: Uneducated Censorship...

Pakistan's Peshawar province bans the book launch of Malala Yousafzai's memoir


Link Here 30th January 2014
Am Malala Stood Education Taliban An event in north-west Pakistan to launch Malala Yousafzai's memoir was cancelled after pressure from Peshawar local officials, organisers say.

Dr Khadim Hussain of the Bacha Khan Education Trust told BBC Urdu that the ban was direct intervention by the provincial government .

Malala Yousafzai was 14 years old when she was shot in the head by muslim extremists of the Taliban in the north-western Swat valley in October 2012 because of her campaign to promote girls' education.

She and her family now live in the British city of Birmingham where she has been receiving treatment. She was not expected to attend the launch.

Malala has described the memoir, I am Malala, as her own story - and that of millions of others denied the chance to go to school.

 

 Update: Recommending Beyonce...

The Daily Mail awards Beyonce its highest accolade, 'vile'


Link Here 29th January 2014
beyonce grammys video The Daily Mail has lauded Boyonce's performance at the Grammy's in glowing terms:

Is this really what little girls should aspire to, Beyonce'? Parents attack vile display at Grammys

Singer performed provocative routine at Grammy Awards last night Danced and writhed around on stage in a barely-there leotard Grinded up against her husband Jay-Z who joined her for act. At one point, the mother-of-one straddled a chair and was seen running her hands up and down her thighs in a suggestive manner before leaning back to drape herself seductively over her seat.

Margaret Morrissey, of Parents Outloud, said:

It is time Beyonce realised she is offending every decent person in this country who I hope in future once they hear her name will switch off their TV.'

Pippa Smith, of SaferMedia, said:

There is something rotten at the heart of this so-called "music" industry when young women celebrities and now a husband and wife start to behave in such an obscenely sexual manner at events popular with all ages. They are doing enormous harm to children's perception of what is normal behaviour.

Vivienne Pattison, of Mediawatch-UK, said:

In this footage Beyonce is wearing a really skimpy outfit but Jay-Z is not. If girls and women are seen exclusively as sexual beings rather than as complicated people with many interests, talents and identities, boys and men may have difficulty relating to them on any level other than the sexual.

The show was aired at 9pm after the watershed

 

 Offsite Article: The right to insult all religions is important, and should be cherished...


Link Here 27th January 2014
liberal conspiracy logo Most religious Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims in Britain still don't understand freedom of speech. They pay lip service to free speech, of course, but the minute they feel their religion is being insulted, they want to see it censored.

See article from liberalconspiracy.org

 

 Update: Aggressive Complaints...

Mothers Against Murder and Aggression are 'outraged' about a Dolce and Gabbana fashion advert


Link Here 21st January 2014  full story: Dolce and Gabbana...Adverts dressed to impress
dolce and gabba knives advert A complaint about a fashion advert featuring guns and knives has been lodged by a moralist campaign group.

Fashion company Dolce & Gabbana created an advert for their winter campaign. It depicts a man with a flintlock pistol grasping a naked woman as they stand over a dead body with a bullet hole in its forehead, while two other men stand poised with daggers.

Dee Warner, of campaign group Mothers Against Murder and Aggression, said:

The poster has nothing whatsoever to do with fashion and everything to do with the glorification of guns and knives.

Dolce & Gabbana should take responsibility for the part they play in the damage caused by these insensitive and irresponsible advertising campaigns.

The fashion industry is looked up to by our young people, those that aspire to wear the clothing that their celebrity idols wear.

The industry is filled with irresponsible adverts that send out messages to these young people that guns and knives are cool and so are drugs.

Warner said she was submitting a complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

 

 Offsite Article: You can't parody Islam...


Link Here 2nd January 2014  full story: Monty Python...Monty Python winds up the nutters
Monty Pythons Life Brian DVD Monty Python star Michael Palin believes religious sensitivities have increased so much it would be impossible to make Life of Brian today

See article from dailymail.co.uk

 

 Diary: Recommended by Christian Concern...

The Last Temptation of Christ continues to 'outrage', this time at Wells Cathedral on 25th January


Link Here 25th January 2013
Last Temptation Christ DVD As part of the Bath Film Festival 2014, Wells Cathedral is hosting a screening of Martin Scorsese's controversial film The Last Temptation of Christ on Saturday 25 January.

The film caused outrage when it was released in 1988 because some hold that it is a blasphemous interpretation of Jesus' life on earth, depicting, among other things, His marriage to Mary Magdelene and raising a family with her.

The Cathedral is standing by its decision to show the film despite nutter pressure to get it banned.

Andrea Williams of Christian Concern said:

The planned screening at Wells Cathedral will spread a wholly false message and obscure the New Testament history of the life and purpose of Jesus Christ from his birth to his death on the cross.

In an age when many people may have the sketchiest knowledge of the Gospel and history of Jesus Christ, the screening of this blasphemous film which challenges the perfection of the life of Jesus, by introducing an offensive dream sequence, will spread misunderstanding of the tenets of the Christian faith and give the impression that the church endorses such false teaching.

We have received calls and correspondence from concerned churchgoers, not only in the Somerset area, and the Western Daily Press has reported that some worshippers have described the film as 'appalling' for introducing the 'theme of debauchery'. It is difficult to understand how screening such a film in a hallowed cathedral serves the Kingdom of God. For that reason we have urged our supporters to make their views known to the Dean, who is principally responsible for the administration of the Cathedral.