During a recent appearance on Good Morning Britain, Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party member Jim Wells made quite a fool of himself when he said LGBTQ people shouldn’t be shown on television before 9 p.m.
During the interview, the topic of Strictly Come Dancing (the U.K.’s version of Dancing With The Stars) arose. Specifically, the possibility of the show featuring same-sex dance partners. Wells was quick to say he opposed the idea.
“It’s family viewing,” he said. “You’ve had a busy week, you sit down with the family and you watch pure entertainment. The last thing you want is to be challenged or to be asked deep intellectual questions.”
Deep intellectual questions? About… dancing?
Wells went on to explain that seeing two people of the same sex dancing together was “challenging” for young viewers.
“They’ll be asking why are the two men or the two women dancing,” he continued. “They want to be entertained. They don’t want to be challenged.”
When asked specifically what time he thought gay people should be allowed to appear on television, Wells referred to the BBC’s old stance on same-sex couples being featured on Strictly Come Dancing, saying, “Exactly the same time as the BBC thought two years ago, 9pm.”
Things quickly unravelled from there.
Piers and Susanna challenge former DUP Health Minister Jim Wells, who says he will refuse to watch Strictly Come Dancing in case he sees same-sex couples dancing.@piersmorgan | @susannareid100 | #GMB pic.twitter.com/Wc7lYLsIba
— Good Morning Britain (@GMB) September 3, 2019
Speaking to The Belfast Telegraph, Wells, who was ousted from his post as health minister in 2015 after claiming kids of same-sex parents were “more likely” to be abused, doubled down on his antiquated beliefs.
The 62-year-old said he was done watching the reality dance competition, which he once believed was “wonderful family viewing,” after it announced it was open to the idea of featuring same-sex dance partners.
“Now we’ve decided to introduce same-sex partners as demanded by the LGBT community,” he lamented. “This goes out at 7.30pm on a Saturday evening when families want to sit down and watch something that won’t be challenging, won’t ask any awkward questions, won’t be embarrassing.”
“It’s going to ruin it for family viewing.”
Sounds like the only person “ruining” anything is Wells.
Related: Will Young thinks the ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ same-sex partner rule is “insulting”
PLAYS WELL WITH OTHERS
His views are as fake and disgusting as the $99 rug sitting on his head….
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The DUP is basically a ultra conservative, fundamentalist Protestant group, who is very anti-Catholic, anti-gay, etc. They were the opposition to the Irish Nationalists during the Troubles (for good or bad), and their old leader Ian Paisley was a nut job.
Your children would not need to ask those questions if they were not raised by bigoted ignorant homophobes like yourself.
I don’t think politicians should be shown on Tv before 9 p.m., so we’re even.
LOSER, ALREADY FIRED FROM ONE JOB.
I am old enough to remember England during the post war period and into the 60’s when Dance Halls
were common in England ,one frequently saw women dancing together due to shortage of men ! Try telling the Greeks, the Russians and very Orthodox Jews that its wrong for men to dance together Just look at their National Dances need I say more ?
He didn’t exactly say what has been reported.
He did say that same sex couple dancing should be post watershed (9pm) – an outdated and repugnant view.
But he did not say NO gay people.
He accepted that there is a gay judge on the same show; with whom he takes no issue.
He accepted that there are gay characters in our soap operas; he takes no issue with those being on air pre-watershed.
This views re: 9pm were specific to same-sex ‘activity’ and didn’t include gay people as whole.
Does it exonerate him? No. Does it make him less homophobic than the article makes out? Yes.
Josh in OR
Less homophobic = still homophobic.
Homophobia is unacceptable, no matter the ‘degree’.
There are no degrees of homophobia – there is just homophobia. This man is homophobic. As far as I know, there are two gay judges on the BBC program – I just looked it up. I also cannot understand why Northern Ireland – which is a part of the UK – is still exempt from things like gay marriage and abortion rights. Clearly, someone has to stand up to those people and force them into the 21st century. It is simply absurd that one small part of the UK is allowed to ignore human rights. It reminds me of people like Moore who tried to exempt Alabama from SC rulings. Bigots should never be allowed to dictate policy.
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