Reader comments · How to complain about the BBC interviewing pro-gay execution fundamentalist on Sir Elton’s baby · PinkNews

Enter your email address to receive our daily LGBT news roundup

You're free to unsubscribe at any time.


How to complain about the BBC interviewing pro-gay execution fundamentalist on Sir Elton’s baby

Post your comment

Comments on this article are now closed.

Reader comments

  1. dave wainwright 29 Dec 2010, 1:44pm

    The Director General of the BBC is a roman catholic and notorious in his promotion of a pro catholic , christian agenda and in courting the papacy of Pope Benedict no opportunity is ever wasted in attacking LGBT issues .

  2. DENIZOT Gilles 29 Dec 2010, 1:53pm


  3. The best route is to complain to Offcom, since every letter/e-mail/phone call they receive concerning an issue is investigated; and will not be fudged.

  4. Thank you for embedding the links to the various complaints sites in your article. Please make this standard ‘house practice’ on appropriate issues, It really helps those of us who might shy away from hunting down the various complaints forms to get our voices heard. And this huge misjudgment by the BBC needs a big hearing!

  5. Jamie Beaglehole 29 Dec 2010, 2:26pm

    Please could you post the link to this BBC report so that we can watch it before we complain?

  6. Peter Leeson 29 Dec 2010, 2:48pm

    Last night’s newspaper review on BBC News 24 focused on the fact that they had “bought a baby”.

  7. Dave North 29 Dec 2010, 3:01pm

    Sent the following:

    Why did the BBC not make it clear that Mr Green is an extreme fundamentalist Christian who supports the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill (2009) and its associated penalty of death. He also compares abortion to the Holocaust. Shortly after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans in August 2005, killing over 1600 residents and rendering hundreds of thousands homeless, Green issued a statement claiming that this was the result of God’s wrath and had brought “purity” to the city. After the appearance of Green on Question Time in September 2005, the group was condemned by the Rev Dr David Peel, then Moderator of the General Assembly of the United Reformed Church. Dr Peel said: “It is a matter of some regret that … the BBC should choose to undermine the reputation of Question Time by giving a platform to a small, self-selecting group distinguished by its claim to be a prophetic voice in this country … Christian Voice has the right to express its extreme views, but it is as representative of Christian opinion in Britain as the Monster Raving Loony Party would be of mainstream political parties – and far less entertaining.” To put forth this mans opinion without informing the viewer of the above ‘on record’ facts is grossly irresponsible to say the least. This man is a religious fundamentalist no different from those of other religious persuasions. As far as I am concerned until the BBC publicly apologises for this, you can stick your TV license where the sun don’t shine.

  8. dave wainwright 29 Dec 2010, 3:46pm

    The BBC is most consistent in its biased reporting of LGBT issues , forever failing its LGBT license payers in its misreporting and biased agenda in favour of catholic and christian groups , it always fails in its reporting and coverage of gay pride festivals , rallies and events , nowhere near the same kind of coverage is given as to Notting Hill Carnival a comparable event,
    Or to the Popes visit which had maximum and unprecedented coverage and yet attracted a fraction of the numbers that gay pride festivals attract annually, yet receive minimal or zero coverage of .

  9. The BBC is institutionally homophobic.

    that was the result of the BBC Trust survey held earlier this year.

    Clearly they have learned nothing.

    Do NOT pay your TV license fee.

    Why should any LGBT person fund an a public body which does not represent us?

  10. Hmm, considering the fact that the BBC is chock to the rafters with queens, I find the concept of being “Institutionally homophobic” difficult to believe.

    However they do court controversy and make a rod for their own backs with this crap. As someone pointed out in an earlier discussion, if there was a black immigration issue, would they interview Nick Griffin of the BNP on his opinion? I somehow doubt it.

  11. Made my complaint, feel a bit better now!!

  12. I have filed a complaint, although did not ask for a reply from the BBC, my experience with the BBC’s objectivity and sensitivity to these matters is that they don’t give a monkey’s. As John K says, better to write to OFCOM.

    Something that has been bugging me since I watched the news piece however is why they felt the need to offer an alternative opinion at all. Surely, a Sir of the realm, a happy occasion, why do the BBC feel the need to tarnish the joyful news with a negative approach?

    Perhaps, as Dave Wainwright points out, it is down to the religious bias of Mark Thompson. I am heartily sick of the BBC news reportage anyway; sanitised, banal, authoritarian.

  13. It’s interesting to read everyone’s comments opposite. I really had no idea that the BBC was so homophobic, but now that I think on the coverage they gave to the Pope’s visit, and the wretched Stephen Green, I can see that they are. I have made my complaint to them, but will also add it to Offcom as John suggests. It seems that internet forums are where homophobia is also flourishing in the media. Take a look at Buzz on the Yahoo website and search for the Elton John story. There are hundreds of offensive comments on there. It makes depressing reading sadly.

  14. Steve@GayWebHosting 29 Dec 2010, 6:55pm

    Thanks Pink News for this follow-up article and links that we need to make our voices heard..

    I would agree with the previous commenter who suggested this might be a good thing to do in the future. Very much appreciated.

  15. Michael J K Findlay 29 Dec 2010, 8:49pm

    Send a letter to the “Culture, Media and Sport Committee” too on

  16. After the BBC’s Have Your Say about executing homosexuals I wrote a letter of complaint to my MP who got a reply back from Mark Thompson, which he forwarded to me.

    In a wry comment in his covering letter my MP wrote: “It’s always difficult to be certain, but Mr Thompson’s letter seems to acknowledge that the BBC overstepped the mark”.

    I’ve written to the BBC on a few matters over the years and I don’t think I have ever had a response that I thought was satisfactory. This is why the Corporation needs external independent regulation.

    The number of hard line religious people in Britain has increased enormously over the last ten years. It’s really important that we fight things like this. Otherwise, 20 or 30 years from now, we really do face seeing the clock being turned back on things such as rights for women and LGBTs.

  17. The Guardian on Mark Thompson: .. views regarded as “extreme” could and should be broadcast by the BBC even within the current rules on impartiality.

    Thompson has effectively sold out to Murdoch, in the hope of keeping in with the Conservative-led government.

    Unfortunately Jeremy Hunt will probably OK the Murdoch takeover of BSkyB, which Vince Cable said he would have rejected.

  18. It looks likely that Murdoch’s takeover will be referred to the Competition Commission for another six month consideration. Though Jeremy Hunt doesn’t have to abide by their decision either.

  19. suzanne simmons 30 Dec 2010, 12:10am

    I agree whole heartedly with this piece. I saw the news with this interview with this nasty individual and was livid at how poor spirited the BBC were. I could see no need whatsoever for his hateful opinions at the end of a happy story with a real feel good factor. No need for a balance in this case at all – if that is their defense. Badly judged by BBC maybe the editor was on holiday??? No – I feer not – a homophobic and nervous institution unable to make sensible level headed judgements.

  20. Our local TV station borrowed the interview here in Sydney Australia and also did not give any of the background about the creep.

  21. Just sent this response to the BBC complaint service.

    In response to the news that Elton John and his partner have become parents of a baby boy, the News at Six broadcast an interview with Stephen Green of Christian Voice. Whilst a balanced approach to stories is to be expected from the BBC, Christian Voice is not representative of Christians in Britain, and the BBC did not indicate to viewers the nature of the organisation Mr. Green represents, or his previous homophobic remarks. These include support for the proposed death penalty in Uganda and criticism of Gareth Thomas as a ‘wicked’ role model for children. He recently (October 2010) spoke at the Trinity College, Dublin, Philosophical Society, proposing the motion “This House Believes That The Gay Rights Movement Has Undermined Family Values”. To quote his words, available on the Christian Voice website, “family values…are the opposite of the values of homosexuality, which are typified by hedonism, vanity, immorality, an obsessive permissiveness, promiscuity and a destructive individualism.” Views like this are offensive to many viewers, including myself, a lesbian and a Christian.

    In addition, the comments made by Mr. Green were pure speculation; there is no evidence at all that Elton John and David Furnish have acquired a child as a ‘designer accessory’, and rather more evidence (eg their previous attempt to adopt an orphan) that they are actively looking to provide a loving home and establish a family.

    I would very much like to know the editorial rationale for seeking and broadcasting this interview, which was very obviously heavily edited, and why the extremist views held by Stephen Green and his organisation were not made clear to viewers.

  22. Oh pur-leeeeaaase!! PN is supposed to be a news platform, not a step-by-step guide on how to join the hysterical loony militants in reacting to any perceived slur or insult. Good grief!

  23. Here is the Protest The Pope Coverage you did not see on the BBC:

  24. Done:
    Stephen Green was interviewed on the subject of Sir Elton John and David Furnish’s new baby, apparently to show one extreme of view, but the opinions he expressed (and comments he has publicly made previously) are not fit for broadcast and did not contribute to the programme. I am disappointed that the BBC saw fit to present a radical extremist individual on this matter; would Abu Hamza be interviewed about the Church of England deciding whether to allow women Bishops, or Hitler about issues of ethnicity? No.

  25. Thankyou pink news for providing this info.

  26. SENT

    Sirs I am disgusted with the continuing standards of poor journalism and reporting that the BBC employs. Stephen Green, of right-wing group Christian Voice, was allowed airtime on the 28 December on BBC News. Your viewers should have at the very least been alerted to the extreme views of this nasty individual – which has included support for the death penalty for gay men. Other outbursts have included calling openly gay rugby star Gareth Thomas a “wicked” role model for children and compared openly gay singer Ian Watkins (H from the band Steps) to a mass murderer. I wish I had an option not to pay my BBC licence fee as I now view the giving o money to your corporation through the government as tantamount to funding a homophobic organisation. I look forward to your justification for such low standards in news reporting. Mr J Duncan

  27. DONE!!!!

  28. I waited until today to express my concerns about the use of Stephen Green as an interviewee in the coverage of Elton John becoming a father. I wanted to hear what the BBC had to say. The argument that Stephen Green was selected to reflect the real debate in this country about same-sex parenting is ridiculous. We have a real debate about immigration, but the BBC does not interview the BNP for the counterargument – you interview Migration Watch. Stephen Green is an extremist who has condoned execution for gay people overseas and his views are unacceptable to the vast majority of the British public. His organisation commands negligible public support. If the BBC could not find anyone else to interview, perhaps that indicates that there is not, in fact, such a ‘debate’ about gay parenting as the BBC suggests. There does seem to be a real debate about Elton John’s age, however. Perhaps that should have been the focus of the piece. Manufacturing a debate is peculiar and offensive. If the BBC must use hate-mongers like Mr Green as interviewees, it is essential that the BBC introduce them properly, such as by saying ‘Stephen Green, from the tiny fringe group Christian Voice, which supports the use of the death penalty in Uganda to punish gay sex’. It is also essential that you correct disturbing falsehoods such as Mr Green’s claim that ‘A baby needs a mother and it seems an act of pure selfishness to deprive a baby of a mother.’ If you’re going to include a statement like that, then you need to include a child psychologist explaining that the (admittedly quite liimited) evidence on this suggests that kids with two male parents do just as well as anyone else. And if you think that would be tedious in an entertainment report, then maybe you shouldn’t include such mendacious and offensive comments in the first place.

  29. I have been investigating the National Association of Journalists

    I appears that the BBC’s journalist standards (with regards the Mr Green itnerview) possibly contravenes the unions code of conduct concerning public interest.

    It is possible to contact them using the following e-mail address

  30. Would they have interviewed someone who held the same extemist views on racial issues?. No of course they wouldn’t. Sent my complaint in and requested a reply.

  31. “and yet attracted a fraction of the numbers that gay pride festivals attract annually, yet receive minimal or zero coverage of”

    Why should Pride have any coverage? it’s the same every year, and any impartial report would be along the lines of ‘gays make themselves look stupid and reinforce negative stereotypes’ =]

  32. Since we now have the BBC on the defensive . . . thanks to every ones hard work sending e-mails to OFFCOM and the BBC

    The ultimate Irony I think would be . . . A big protest outsiude BBC house, with Sky covering it

    If you cannot beat them . . . why don’t we just wind them up like spinning tops. The BBC would hate to be trumped by Sky

  33. edmund raphael 30 Dec 2010, 10:05pm

    As is it completely ridiculous, wholly ignorant and grotesque for anyone to suggest that homosexuals ought to be “executed” because of their inherent sexuality, I hold the unalterable that upstanding homosexuals ought to deride the adoption of innocent children (below the age of sixteen) by any other than conventional, hetrosexual couples.
    Homosexual men or women are, understably, unable to naturally conceive so ought to be contented with their ‘adoption’ of a dog or dogs or cats or similar animal species, should they find that their love for their partner (should they so have) is insufficient or inadequate for their ability for survival.
    INNOCIENT babies or children, who are unable to make up their own minds, ought not to be subjected to the faniciful whims of the over rich or the fashion concious, or whatever these bored or people of instability consider they require.

    Although irreligious, I have the utmost respect for my fellow man, in particular for innocent babes and children, who have no ability to make a decision of any sort, pertaining their future security. I abhor drug-takers or reprrobates of any description, might I add.
    Ed. Raphael

  34. Edmund Raphael

    . . . and Heterosexuals who find they cannot conceive of children ???

    . . . should they adopt a cat or a dog becasue they cannot . . .

    . . . “Naturally Concieve Children” ???

  35. @Edmund – you state that “homosexual men or women are, understably, unable to naturally conceive”. In fact most homosexual men are perfectly capable of creating a child – probably in the ‘usual’ way. Maybe they wouldn’t enjoy the experience much and there are other methods for those who wouldn’t want any physical contact withe the opposite sex. Similarly, lesbians are able to conceive in the usual way should they wish to do so. Or they too can use another method.

    There’s nothing clever about making a baby. In fact some of the stupidest people in our society do it the most often.

  36. DONE, TOO.

  37. edmund raphael 31 Dec 2010, 1:52pm

    To “GS”, might I clarify the point I mae, which is that homosexual couples as partners, connot conceive children…..

    To Jon K. I suggest, that the should read the forgoing, fuller explanation of what I wrote and, in addition, understand my belief that, suitably proven hetrosexual couples, only, ought to adopt babies in need of parents. Jon K is over sensitive, therefore misses the actual arguement or reaction to the point of this discussion

    Edmund Raphael

  38. Thank you for the direct links. Complaint filed with the BBC, will now file a complaint with Offcom as suggested by JohnK.

  39. Ed Raphael, your position is clear – you think that only heterosexual coiples should adopt. Fortunately, the law disagrees with you.

    And – to use your nasty idea – why don’t infertile HETEROSEXUAL couples just adopt a dog or cat?

    Gay people are no more or less fertile than anyone else and we can have children if we choose. The fact that we plan to do so rather than have accidents like thousands of straight people do every year is a GOOD thing not a bad one.

    Moreover, recent studies show that a lesbian couple are the best at raising a child. Therefore I’ll be inisisting that all straight couples hand their children over to me and my girlfriend and couples like us. Except I WON’T – because I’m secure enough in who I am not to feel the need to victimise other people or mark out certain groups as inferior or ‘enemies’.

  40. Edmund raphael wrote

    “Jon K is over sensitive, therefore misses the actual arguement or reaction to the point of this discussion”

    . . . . . . . . . .

    Edmund . . . resorting to putdowns is not an argument

    Edmund . . . your argument appears to be that only heterosexual couples should adopt children

    Edmund . . . In English law it is not illegal for gay couples to adopt children

  41. Edmund . . . Which Catholic Adoption Agency do you belong to?

  42. edmund raphael 31 Dec 2010, 7:41pm

    Oh dear, how sad it is that one can’t give one’s personal opinion, without rousing rather intollerant, frenzied opposition.
    I note that you don’t damn me for my views pertaining to Mr. Green and his homophobic ideas. I am well aware of the legal position, as far as adoptive parenting by homosexual couples is concerned. Also, I am realise that many homosexual couples may well be as good parents as most hetrosexual couples; maybe better than some. However, I give MY view, from MY beliefs that a baby or a child of under the age when it can give its fair consent, ought to be adopted by a male father and a female mother, as I do VERY much worry that this child may feel uneasy in itself, in later years or may be taunted or bullied at school.
    I had considerably older parents than did any of my friends, which caused me lots of embarrassment, believe me. Given MY experience, I’d have preferred to have those which I choose to call “conventional” parents.
    Oh, I already said that I was completely irreligious, John K.

    Ed. Raphael

  43. What? Ungrateful for having your own biological parents? And if it’s being bulled at school that causes the problem for the child, then it’s bulling at school that should be tackled. Not the parents you oaf. Going by your logic any school child has the right to bully any other school child because every other school child doesn’t like any other school child’s parents. Where the hell do you draw the line on this one? Race, religion, creed, accent, class, single parents, age of parents, weight of parents, career of parents, looks? I for one am grateful that my parents had me at all and could care less about what anyone else thought about them. And that’s what it’s all about. Both were abandoned themselves as children. Neither was adopted. They knew what it was like to have no parents at all. Consider yourself lucky you had the one you did.

  44. “Oh, I already said that I was completely irreligious, John K.”

    Edmund . . . your “Heterosexism” reveals that your religion appears to be that of “Heterosexuality”

  45. Johnk, your last comment about Edmund’s heterosexiam being his religion is very interesting considering that Christianity really is a glorified fertility cult run and managed largely by would be celibates and/or child rapists and their enablers (certainly the Catholicism appears to be anyway)

  46. edmund raphael 1 Jan 2011, 6:59pm

    “Biological”, I didn’t mention.

    I politely respect everyone’s opinion and retain my own.

    Edmund Raphael

  47. Edmund . .

    Resorting to one word prouncements highlights how you have not only lost the argument, but never had one to start with.

  48. “Also, I am realise that many homosexual couples may well be as good parents as most hetrosexual couples; maybe better than some. However, I give MY view, from MY beliefs…..”

    Your perfectly entitled to your belief, but I fail to understand why you continue in it when you yourself have acknowledged that some gay parents may be better than some straight ones. The logical conclusion of that is that you would prefer a child to be placed with WORSE straight parents simply because they were straight, than the BEST parents who, according to you, should be discounted because they’re gay.

    As for being bullied at school – well, at most schools they don’t let the bullies make the rules… I can also assure you that most children aren’t quite as unaccepting as you believe. Yes, there is initial curiosity if a child has two parents of the same sex, but that quickly dispels.

    All children deserve GOOD parents – not necessarily straight ones.

  49. Come and join the new group “Media Watch” on mypinknews

    Group dedicated to action on media bias and homophobia

  50. I complained to Ofcom and the BBC

  51. Colm Howard-Lloyd 5 Jan 2011, 12:26pm

    I have just received a response from the BBC. It fails to address the complaint and I will be asking them to look into it further:

    Dear Mr XXX

    Thank you for your feedback regarding the BBC News bulletin at 18:20, broadcast on 28 December 2010.

    We appreciate some viewers were unhappy that a report on Sir Elton John recently becoming a surrogate father included the views of Mr Stephen Green.

    We recognise this issue can arouse a diverse range of contrasting opinions. This brief report featured Sir Elton John’s thoughts and an opposing view on the matter at hand. It must be stressed that over time we have heard from all sides of this debate, dealing the subject in a fair and impartial manner.

    We acknowledge the strength of sentiment on this matter, thanks again for taking the time to contact us.

    Kind Regards

    BBC Audience Services

  52. Hi Colm

    Come and join us on my pinknews by clicking on the button “MY” under Home.

    We have set up a Media Watch group on mypinknews, perhaps you might like to join us; and share your dealings with the BBC


  53. If the BBC thinks this is the best response to this self manufactured row, they really should think again. What are the Gay M.P.’s going to do about this outrage?

    (BBC Email Response)
    Thank you for your feedback regarding the BBC News bulletin at 18:20, broadcast on 28 December 2010.

    We appreciate some viewers were unhappy that a report on Sir Elton John recently becoming a surrogate father included the views of Mr Stephen Green.

    We recognise this issue can arouse a diverse range of contrasting opinions. This brief report featured Sir Elton John’s thoughts and an opposing view on the matter at hand. It must be stressed that over time we have heard from all sides of this debate, dealing the subject in a fair and impartial manner.

    We acknowledge the strength of sentiment on this matter, thanks again for taking the time to contact us.

    Kind Regards

    BBC Audience Services

These comments are un-moderated and do not necessarily represent the views of PinkNews. If you believe that a comment is inappropriate or libellous, please contact us.