“Comedians and dramatists delight in ‘pouring scorn’ on Christianity but are ‘timid’ about mocking Muslims, a broadcasting watchdog chief said yesterday.” This from the Telegraph, and Nicolei.
“Islam was accorded far more respect on television and radio than other religions because satirists were ‘cautious’ and ‘self-censoring’ when faced with the prospect of causing offence to Muslims, said Lord Dubs, chairman of the Broadcasting Standards Commission.
“‘In portraying Muslims they have held back, they have censored themselves, they are timid,’ the Labour peer said. ‘I have seen them pour scorn on Christianity more than on other religions. Christianity is an easier and more acceptable target followed, to a lesser extent, by Jews and Hindus.’
“His remarks come on the eve of an announcement by the BSC that it is to impose one of the stiffest penalties it can draw on after Channel 4 re-broadcast a remark by Jamie Oliver about ‘Jesus –ing Christ’.
“The BSC had already upheld a complaint that the comment, made by the celebrity chef in an episode of the fly-on-the-wall series Jamie’s Kitchen, was offensive to Christians. The regulator was angry when the offending remark was aired again in an unedited repeat of the programme.
“A spokesman for Channel 4 said the repeat went out later than the original programme, at 10pm rather than 9pm, and it had been thought that the audience at the later time would not be offended. In a rare intervention of this kind by the BSC, Channel 4 will be forced to broadcast the commission’s new adjudication on air and have it published in a newspaper.
“The commission is subsumed from today into the new super-regulator Ofcom. Lord Dubs admitted that the BSC had also shown bias in favour of Muslims. ‘We have tried to treat the religions equally. I doubt we have succeeded. I think we have shaded a bit on the side of Islam,’ he said.
“The Right Rev Richard Holloway, the former Bishop of Edinburgh and a member of the BSC board, said Oliver’s remark would never have been aired had it been about the Prophet Mohammed.
“‘There is much more sensitivity to disturbing Islam,’ he said. ‘It is partly because the Muslim community does not have a tradition of humour about religion, although Christian leaders will stand up for things that are fundamentally important.'” Christians are also unlikely to kill those who offend them.