Free Speech


It’s nice to see themes pounded on year after year on this blog (and on others as well) are finally sifting into the mainstream media, but is it too late? The politicos talk a big talk in the 24-48 hrs of the massacre, but they’ll soon resort to chastizing those of us who take free speech seriously, that we ”should be more ‘responsible’ in our postings and in discourses.

This is how freedom is killed off. Little by little, piece by piece: LITTLEJOHN on how the State will cede yet more ground to terrorists in the wake of the Paris massacre Islamist terrorists massacred staff at the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris on Wednesday

Over the Christmas holiday, the BBC broadcast a tribute to that brilliant comedian Dave Allen, who died almost ten years ago.

Much of Allen’s shtick revolved around his Irish Catholic upbringing. He poked merciless fun at nuns and the priesthood, who were portrayed as hypocrites and sadists.

At the height of his fame in the Seventies, he outraged the Vatican by performing a sketch in which he played The Pope, dancing a striptease with a group of cardinals down the steps of St Peter’s.

Islamist terrorists massacred staff at the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris on Wednesday

His lampooning of Catholicism even incited death threats from the IRA and for a while he was banned by the Irish state broadcaster RTE.

Despite the complaints and controversy, the various incarnations of the Dave Allen show were a staple of the BBC schedules for 22 years, from 1968 to 1990.

The recent celebration of his work showcased many of those sacrilegious sketches. In fact, the clue was in the title: ‘Dave Allen – God’s Own Comedian.’ You can still catch it on iPlayer until the end of the month.

Now try to imagine the modern BBC broadcasting a series by a comic billed as ‘Allah’s Own Comedian’, which satirised Islam and featured the Prophet Mohammed doing the Full Monty, surrounded by imams peeling off their holy robes.

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