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Twitter users furious at BBC gay debate

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  1. “Should homosexuals be executed?”

    The question is chilling, isn’t it?

    If you heard that Muslims were asking this question in a local mosque you would click your teeth and shake your head, knowing that this is the kind of question that backward groups still ask.

    But, no, this isn’t some group of fundamentalists asking this question, it’s a BBC website, apparently!

    It makes ME feel very uncomfortable.

    You think to yourself, hold on, we’ve got a Labour government that has wonderfully passed a whole raft of great anti-gay legislation in the past ten years to make life less threatening for us . . . and yet here’s the BBC asking IN PUBLIC whether we should be executed or not?

    There is something horribly awry here in the minds of those who have set up the page on the BBC website asking this question.

    We have made such a lot of progress, we have covered so much ground, yet we’re still subject to knifings in public places like Trafalgar Square . . . AND the BBC blithely invites people to say whether they think we should be executed or not!!!!!!!

    This is OUTRAGEOUS!

    More than one person at the BBC needs to be sacked over this!

  2. Is there a link to the web page? can’t find it…

  3. Should blacks be hung from trees by rednecks wearing white sheets?

    Should hispanics be run down by pick-up trucks full of rednecks wearing white sheets?

    Should women be forced back into the kitchen, barefoot and pregnant?

    Should asians be forced to build the railroad in Canada again??

    Should children be seen and not heard?

    Should gays be executed?

    Where is the BBC’s email so I can send them this list or topics I would like to see covered…

    Of course, this is tongue-in-cheek,,, I am dismayed and so shocked at this,,,my 18 year old daughter was in tears,,,shame on BBC

  4. I’ve been saying for years that the BBC are homophobes! Even that Murderer sentenced to 36 years didn’t get a whisker on there TV News channel and worrying whenever there is news about the gay community they ignore it and put on stories about pedophiles, like they are giving the gay community the index Finger.

    Look at this Pink Paper story I wrote:
    http://tinyurl.com/yangec6

  5. The link to the Have Your Say page is http://newsforums.bbc.co.uk/nol/thread.jspa?forumID=7347&sortBy=2&edition=1&ttl=20091216154023

    They also say you can follow them on Facebook at facebook.com/africahys

    Or on Twitter at @bbcafricahys

  6. You can make a complaint to the BBCs governing body via the BBC Trust don’t bother with complaining to the duty officer this is a BB Trust issue.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbctrust/about/complaints_appeals/index.shtml

  7. Tim Hopkins 16 Dec 2009, 4:47pm

    This “poll” subject is completely inappropriate for the BBC, and one that encourages the grossest homophobia.

    The fact that Uganda is considering legislation is no excuse – would the BBC run a poll “Should women who have sex with someone other than their husband be stoned to death?” and excuse it on the grounds that that is the law in Iran? Of course they would not.

    Here is the address for complaining to the BBC

    Here is the address for complaining to your MP

  8. This is the page at which to make your complaint:
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/complaints/forms/

    Thanks, Abi, and John.

  9. The page you need to refer to, i.e. the page you are complaining about, is:

    http://newsforums.bbc.co.uk/nol/thread.jspa?forumID=7347&sortBy=2&edition=1&ttl=20091216154023

  10. The page you need to refer to, i.e. the page you are complaining about, is:

    http://newsforums.bbc.co.uk/nol/thread.jspa?forumID=7347&sortBy=2&edition=1&ttl=20091216154023

    And here is the body of my complaint to the BBC:

    “Should homosexuals face execution?”

    This is the title on this BBC web-page.

    It is chilling to read it.

    If one heard that some fundamentalist or extremists were asking this question you would click your teeth and shake your head, knowing that this is the kind of question that backward groups still ask.

    But, no, this isn’t some group of fundamentalists asking this question, it’s a BBC website!

    It makes ME feel very uncomfortable.

    You think to yourself, hold on, we’ve had a government that has wonderfully passed a whole raft of great anti-gay legislation in the past ten years to make life less threatening for us . . . and yet here’s the BBC asking IN PUBLIC whether we should be executed or not?

    There is something horribly awry here in the minds of those who have set up the page on the BBC website asking this question.

    We have made such a lot of progress, we have covered so much ground, yet we’re still subject to knifings in public places like Trafalgar Square (yes, it happened to one of us just recently) . . . AND yet the BBC blithely invites people to say whether they think we should be executed or not!!!!!!!

    This is OUTRAGEOUS!

    More than one person at the BBC needs to be sacked over mounting title!

    It is no use justifying this title by saying it was mounted with the intention of allowing free and open debate. The question has been universally phrased. It does not confine the question to what is being proposed in Uganda. It ignores legislation and progress in the UK and many other countries and turns the clock back decades, if not centuries.

  11. Complaint sent. Thanks Eddy.

  12. This is a complete disgrace. I knew the BBC was completely homophobic but never imagined they would go this far.

  13. vulpus_rex 16 Dec 2009, 5:49pm

    This is a deliberately contentious headline that is immediately qualified and explained as a stark reality for the LGBT community in Uganda – it is bold but not in itself homophobic.

    Some of the comments are vile, but then frankly so are some of the comments in here. The mistake the BBC make is in their moderation policy which doesn’t allow speedy, robust counter comments.

    The reason they are not asking a question along the lines of:

    “Should blacks be hung from trees by rednecks wearing white sheets?”

    ,is that no government is passing laws to this effect.

  14. “The reason they are not asking a question along the lines of:

    “Should blacks be hung from trees by rednecks wearing white sheets?”

    ,is that no government is passing laws to this effect.”

    Would it be a valid question if a government was passing a law like that?

  15. I could hardly believe my eyes when I read this report. What the hell are the BBC thinking! Why didn’t they ask a “normal” question such as “Should Uganda be refused aid in light of their proposed homophobic legislation” or something like that.

    Also, they are supposed to vet all comments before they are posted on their website, but in order for this sort of debate to have opposing opinions, they end up posting blatantly severely homophobic views & opinions. This is NOT what I pay my TV licence for.

  16. “I see this as a major breach of the BBCs own code. Its the equivalent to having a debate on if Jews should be exterminated in concentration camps.

    How would heterosexuals feel if PinkNews debated if heterosexuals should be executed!

    The must fundamental human right is the right to life, it is not open to debate to be rubber stamped by the heterosexuals.”

    My full quote that PinkNews quarter used at the bottom of article

  17. Richard GS 16 Dec 2009, 6:05pm

    Grossly inappropriate. Someone with an agenda slipped that one in. We live in a society (Western civ. in general) which unquestionably rejects the killing of people based on prejudice of any kind. I’d think that particularly in Europe, with its experience with the Genocide and the Holocaust, no news media would consider asking this question. They could have asked, is it appropriate that a country consider changing its legal system to outlaw homosexuality. There’s a world of difference between the two. I hope an example is made of whoever allowed this.

  18. vulpus_rex 16 Dec 2009, 6:10pm

    “Would it be a valid question if a government was passing a law like that?”

    It wouldn’t be a valid question for a government to ask but it would be an acceptable way for the BBC (or any other respectable (just about in the case of the BBC)) news organisation to attract attention to the issue.

  19. Twitter users are not the only ones who are furious. If a retraction and apology aren’t seen by the end of today they really are a disgrace.

  20. This really does render my speechless . . . When my voice returns I will decide what to say in my e-mail to the BBC.

    Perhaps we can formulate a group e-mail to avoid reinventing the wheel and push this concern forward by numbers.

  21. They’ve now changed the title of the debate to “Should Uganda debate gay execution?” and ended all discussion

  22. The BBC’s official advice pre-2005 had this to say:

    “Gay and lesbian people, and those who are bi-sexual, make up a significant minority entitled to be served and treated fairly by the BBC …”

    That bit was removed in the current guidelines, which are up for revision. The BBC Trust’s consultation on Editorial Guidelines ends next week.

  23. Congratulations everybody! We scared them! But save the picture that Pink News has used with the article as evidence of what the title WAS before they changed it – just in case it comes in handy! I completely forgot to do an immediate screen-grab at the time! If PinkNews hadn’t, then the evidence would have disappeared!

  24. This has also been reported in ‘The Guardian’.

    * News
    * Media
    * BBC

    BBC news website asks users: ‘Should homosexuals face execution?’

    Talkboard post seeks readers’ views ahead of interactive World Service programme Africa Have Your Say
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2009/dec/16/bbc-africa-have-your-say?CMP=AFCYAH

  25. What an absolute disgrace.

    Would the BBC dare to ask “should Jews be sent to concentration camps?” or “should black people get lynched”? Of course not.

    I’ll be sending in my complaint.

  26. I think the execution of gays has more currency among the straights than we allow ourselves to believe. This serves as a reminder to all of us that we must fight until the very last breath; otherwise, the ovens await us.

    We must take to heart the lesson that the Jews learned to their tremendous cost: that there is always another pogrom, it’s just a matter of when.

  27. I’ve already emailed a complaint to BBC and posted about this on social networking. It’s disgusting, irresponsible and bordering on inciting hate crime. Not only the title but a good few of the comments allowed through moderation are simply appalling. As the publisher of these comments BBC have a legal responsibility to be held accountable for providing them a platform. It’s nothing short of homophobic slander. Debate is one thing, inciting an open debate on the murder of innocent people is quite another. BBC has become pure media sleaze. They deliberately aimed that whole debate toward attracting extremist posts from the dregs of society. Too many LGBT people have died already through ignorance just like this.

  28. Reminded me a little of this Mitchell and Webb sketch…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQnd5ilKx2Y
    With the caveat that the above sketch didn’t involve asking the uninformed masses a loaded question about whether gay people should be executed.
    It’s a red flag to every passing bigot with an email account.
    We get enough homophobic trolling on these pages without asking that right wing reactionary’s wet dream of a question. And this is a website for gay people.
    Should whoever sanctioned that grossly inappropriate survey be sacked?
    Yes:
    No:

  29. Mumbo Jumbo 16 Dec 2009, 9:20pm

    The problem is that by asking it, the BBC have legitimised the question.

    As the World Service is funded by grant in aid from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and is supposed to reflect British aims and values beyond these shores, it might also be worth complaining directly to the Foreign Secretary, David Milliband at:

    MSU.PublicIn@fco.gov.uk

    In the meantime, let’s see if major inquiries suspensions and job-losses follow as they did the comparatively trivial Brand/Ross affair.

    *holds breath*

    *turns blue*

    *expires*

  30. Mumbo Jumbo 16 Dec 2009, 9:25pm

    Ah, this blasted page screwed up the address for the FCO.

    Try this and simply click on the link to contact ministers:

    http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/contact-us

  31. Thanks for the above address, Mumbo. I’ve written AND included a copy of the offending web-page image.

    If anyone cannot paste the image itself into their letters of complaint, direct the reader to the image by way of providing this link:
    http://www.pinknews.co.uk/images/bbchaveyoursay.jpg

  32. Brian Burton 16 Dec 2009, 9:49pm

    The BBc is run by idiots and as time goes by, they certainly prove it is run by Idiots!

  33. At the present time, there is an opportunity to respond to the editors’ defence of their debate. You may want to contribute:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/theeditors/2009/12/controversial_debate.html?s_sync=1

  34. Jean-Paul Bentham 17 Dec 2009, 7:49am

    Listen, I don’t mean to contradict all of you; the whole thing is disgusting, no doubt about it.

    But and but, why is everybody talking as if Uganda is acting unilaterally? This hot & enlightening piece in the “Advocate” has answered many of my questions, including: Why do Ugandan authorities believe they can legislate without regard for basic human rights?

    Hello George Bush, “The Family”, and the Twilight Zone.

    http://www.advocate.com/Politics/Commentary/Uganda_Antigay_Sentiments_Hit_Close_to_Home/

    With information like this, maybe a BBC debate could be turned into an advantage for us, as long as we don’t gag on the stench of contemporary politics.

  35. why is it OK to murder LBG people or debate about people when the same never happens to heteros – it’s more homophobia

  36. J-P, thanks for the link to that Advocate article.

    Horrific is the line that reads: “The new legislation . . . further states that anyone who fails to report a homosexual to the government within 24 hours will be sentenced to three years in prison.”

    We must all imagine the climate of absolute FEAR that that clause, above, will induce! If you suspect someone of being gay in Uganda, then you MUST report him/her immediately otherwise you get three years in prison! Just imagine the effects this will have. EVERYONE in the population will live in a state of fear! For the police may turn up at your door at any time and take you away because, they say, you were aware that someone was gay! People will indeed report anybody they can OUT OF FEAR, to DEMONSTRATE their cooperation with the legislation. People may well report entirely innocent people purely to demonstrate to the authorities that they (the reporters) are cooperating with the law. They will do this as a kind of insurance policy, so that no one will be able to point the finger at them in the future and say “You knew a homosexual but didn’t tell! Into jail you go!”

    This is horrendous.

    A further eye-opener in the Advocate article are provided by these lines:

    “[USA] Republican senators John Ensign of Nevada, James Inhofe of Oklahoma, and Sam Brownback of Kansas would not comment as to whether they supported Uganda’s “kill the gays” legislation. Perhaps the closest eye should be kept on Senator Inhofe, who has made 20 trips to Africa since 1999, most of them to visit President Museveni in Uganda. In addition, he was apparently present at the National Prayer Breakfast in Uganda when the idea for the “kill the gays” bill came up and was first introduced.”

    But it’s not just USA Republicans who appear to behind the outrageous legislation planned for Uganda. It appears that Barack Obama has it in his power to strongly intervene but has not. Why not?

    “This February the U.S. National Prayer Breakfast will be held again. While President Barack Obama spoke at last year’s event and U.S. presidents have almost always taken part, perhaps a closer examination of the Family, which runs the breakfast, should be conducted before our democratically elected president speaks in front of group that has some members who potentially advocate a flagrantly undemocratic and immoral bill in another country that aims to eliminate LGBT people in a genocidal fashion. President Obama received criticism from gays for his choice of notoriously anti-gay-rights Pastor Rick Warren to speak at the Inauguration. Since then, many gays have also criticized Obama for not upholding his promise of equal rights.”

    This is extremely disturbing. We know that in Egypt, Iran, and some other majorly Islamic countries gays are frequently harassed, rounded up, thrown into jail or worse. But in Uganda legislation is to be passed which will produce a climate of such fear that many people who are NOT gay will be reported as such, with dire consequences. And Christian, religious, USA Republicans appear to have sponsored this legislation! And the Democrats now in power have it in their gift to intervene with forceful authority but have not.

    This really needs exposing!

  37. Jean-Paul Bentham 18 Dec 2009, 12:17am

    Thanks Eddy for airing this information so effectively.

    Along with “Egypt, Iran and other Islamic countries”, I hasten to add Honduras where countless gays have been butchered since the revolution in June ousted Democracy and respect for human rights.

  38. Does anyone know of any worldwide campaign against the planned legislation in Uganda?

    This is what we REALLY should be protesting about. What they are planning in Uganda is so similar to what they actually DID in Nazi Germany re. Jews and gays and other “undesirables”.

  39. ellen pauler 19 Jan 2011, 1:25pm

    If being gay is caused genetically only, there should be less snd less gays around since they are not multiplying naturally, so how do they pass on faulty gene.The question is if it is not caused genetically ,then gays are brought up to become gays.

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