One of the more interesting debates on the forum lately was also football related. "Bigot Ron" (as the Sun called him - like they can talk !) was in the dock for making some rather unpleasant comments about Chelsea's Marcel Desailly. Despite setting his stall out with a heartfelt "some of my best friends are black" defence early doors, Ron was well and truly reduced, leaving the field himself without waiting for the curly finger. So next season someone else will be mangling the English language on ITV every other Wednesday night.
Now, political correctness was a bit nuts (although I suspect that the more extreme examples were made up by the papers) but don't forget that in the 70s family entertainment like "Love Thy Neighbour" and "Mind Your Language" was prime-time. Incidentally the same writer was responsible for both, which begs the question, why did no one kill him ?
Love Thy Neighbour was before my time, but Mind Your Language I remember all too well. It was set in an English as a Foreign Language class where the plucky teacher tried to maintain order in his class of national stereotypes - the pretentious Frenchman, the humourless German, the lecherous Italian, the promiscuous Dutch girl, etc. Basically it made 'Allo 'Allo look like 'Amlet *. To give you an idea how bad it was, it's never been on UK Gold.
So now we have people being removed from their jobs for a careless word when they thought no one was listening, but we don't have Mind Your Language on TV. Make your own judgement. I would have thought Ron would have been a bit more careful mind you, as a few months ago his half time off-air comments were broadcast to most of Europe. In between asking for more sandwiches he mused "I'll tell you what, he's a little tw@t that Totti".
* I freely admit that the whole raison d'etre of this piece was to do that line.