stupid questions

Is the BBC Seriously Asking Whether It’s OK to Murder Gay Ugandans?

The BBC, the world’s oldest broadcaster whose radio network recently took flack when a host derided gay Pop Idol winner Will Young, is now putting the morality of Uganda’s “Kill The Gays” bill up to Internet readers.

Because this is what constitutes “letting readers weigh in” in Web 2.0, the network’s Africa Have Your Say show will be hosting a segment today asking listeners whether Uganda’s gays should be executed. You know, so they can debate — DEBATE! — the issue.

In the meantime, they’re inviting reader comments!


Has Africa Have Your Say also hosted segments on whether Rwanda’s “ethnic cleansing” was reasonable? Or whether the Third Reich’s laws, giving the state the right to detain and execute anyone as they saw fit, were reasonable?

Ah yes, well this is the same network whose board members ruled the word “gay,” even when used in a derogatory manner, means “rubbish” and should not be interpreted as offensive.

UPDATE: After much criticism, the BBC has updated its “debate” question:


And they’ve closed off the comments.

UPDATE: BBC has apologized.

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  • terrwill

    Try and substitute “Muslim” for “Gay” in that poll and
    see how fast they would rescind that poll………

  • Keith Kimmel

    Nah, not Muslim… black. First the NAACP would denounce BBC for it, then they would fall all over themselves to fire everyone connected with the idea of posting the poll. It would be comical to watch the rush to political correctness.

  • Keith Kimmel

    Oh look, no comments now. The debate has been closed. BBC deserves a boycott for even asking such a stupid question.

  • B

    No. 3 · Keith Kimmel “Oh look, no comments now. The debate has been closed. BBC deserves a boycott for even asking such a stupid question.”

    It makes what the Ugandan bill would have done very clear. A lot of people, even homophobic people, would think twice before signing something (you had to log in to vote) that could in principle be traced to them advocating that others be executed for consensual sex. If it got some people to think about what was really going on, it might have had a positive effect, and the BBC did call the Uganda bill “disturbing” so the BBC actually indicated disapproval, which probably biased the results by some unknown amount.

  • romeo

    The English are very good at being condescending, but they’re as big a bunch of horse’s asses as anybody else. The very thought of the cloddishness of putting this up for a viewer poll just makes the mind reel.

    I’ve been over there. Don’t believe the crap about them being better on gay issues. They still look down their noses at gay people for the most part, and English women, at least in London, are worse than American women for trying to get into gay guys pants. They just know they can talk you out of your confusion. LOL

  • romeo

    Also, we all know that it’s wacko conservatives that flood into these kinds of polls, most people think this sort of thing is ridiculous and wouldn’t participate. Hence, the results are skewed toward “death for homos” which would not be lost on Uganda in trying to justify what they’re doing. Way to go BBC.

  • jason

    The BBC is a disgusting and disreputable organization which puts multicultural sensitivies before basic gay human rights.

  • sal(the original)


  • sal(the original)

    they once told me when i sent a story about double standard for gays in the military that they did that story already….yeah,whatever… if you listen to this show they recycle the same stuff over and over

  • sal(the original)

    million dollar question where are the gay announcers on bbc??

  • sal(the original)

    heck i bet if you ask bbc to put a open gay announcer on their africa section they would make up some excuse ,and they better not say that they dont talk about their announcers/reporters personal life cause they had a jewish reporter looking for a jewish girl in ny

  • sal(the original)

    you can the listeners sending messages askin why certain silly stories become tha main debate for the day and your response to them is that its what the people wanna talk,what happen to being a serious news station?basically tiger gossip is more important than gays being persecuted

  • jason

    I say let’s stop sending aid to these disgusting African countries. They’re corrupt tinpot dictatorships presided over by in-bred gorillas.

  • ChrisM

    This was really unbelievable. It’s so frustrating to see people make such radically offensive comments while not even realizing it.

    There are people who are saying that taking offense at the question was akin to ignoring the fact that such extreme homophobia exists and that there SHOULD be a debate when such a bill is being proposed. These people are the ones I am talking about. They should think about questions like “was the holocaust right?” It’s disturbing to ask, and is another one that shouldn’t be posed. Because one side of that debate is so incredibly evil that giving it a platform to promote itself as legitimate is almost as bad as holding that view yourself. Just because we don’t acknowledge executing homosexuals as defensible doesn’t mean we are ignoring the issue. What we need to do is make it CLEAR that killing any class of people for some harmless characteristic is WRONG. Then we need to stop it. Not wanting to pause for “debate” is nowhere near ignoring the issue.

  • YellowRanger

    Really, BBC? Really?

  • sal(the original)

    bbc didnt debate whether African children should be killed cause people believe some of them are witches.religious folks there believe they are right in killing those children so should bbc open a debate “should african children accused of witchcraft face execution” or when bbc did stories on albinos being killed in africa ,there was no debate…HYPOCRISY

  • Robert, NYC

    Romeo, I’m a Brit and also a citizen of the U.S. I know a lot more about my country of birth than your junket there.

    First of all, I find it childish that you would write off a media channel and an entire culture over an inappropriate debate that I don’t condone either.

    Secondly, the British public are a lot more enlightened than you give them credit for. Their government allowed gay couples to form civil partnerships with the rights and benefits of marriage (at the national level), though I’m in support of full marriage equality which according to a recent poll, 60% or more of the British public are supportive of. Gay British couples can also bring in their foreign-born partners with or without a civil partnership; they can adopt children even if they are single; they can serve openly in the three branches of the military as well as the social services provided by the fire and police departments. What do we have here aside from five states with very limited marital rights without any federal recognition, no repeal of DADT, DOMA or enactment of ENDA and an immigration bill that excludes gay binational couples? Aim your anger at that.

    Homophobia will never be stamped out as long as religious cults are given a free pass which is where all of this hatred is coming from if you delve into its history for the past two millenia. Its why we lost in Maine, New York and California, ironic for a society that has no state religion but allows religious ministers to run for public office, while six states ban atheists from running.

  • Attmay

    @17 Robert NYC:

    You English were right to expel the Puritans, but why did you have to send them here? Couldn’t you have just beheaded them instead?

  • Luke

    “I’ve been over there. Don’t believe the crap about them being better on gay issues”

    This is nonsense. Britain is FAR more tolerant, on the whole, than the US. We have marriage in all but name, adoption rights, hate speech protection, discrimination legislation, high-profile schooling anti-bullying initiatives, abiity to serve in the armed forces… the list goes on.

    AND the attitude of people is just a lot better. I can be totally open here, without feeling a little nervous, or anxious. In the states, I can’t, unless in certain areas of the states.

  • Robert, NYC

    Luke, you echo what I said in my last post. People taking trips to the UK for a vacation are hardly in a position to dissmis an entire culture based on the action of a media channel which was definitely inappropriate, offensive and unnecessary, a bad judgement call by the BBC editors. Another thing that the Brits don’t have to put up with are religious cultists meddling in the political process and influencing the outcome of legislation and elections or vote people’s rights away based on who they are, not bad for a country that has state religion in name only with one of the lowest church attendance rates in the western world. I don’t care if people are anti-Brit, the UK and others are way ahead of the U.S. on virtually all social issues.

Comments are closed.