BBC presenter under fire for saying Jesus had two dads
The presenter has received criticism for accusing Christians of hypocrisy, by saying Jesus had ‘two dads’ and ‘turned out alright’.
Host Ciaran Varley, 28, made the comments on BBC Raw, an online platform launched by the broadcaster in February, in a bid to develop new talent and engage younger viewers in current affairs.
BBC Raw is led by Mr Varley’s mother, Cheryl Varley, the BBC’s social mobility executive.
During one episode fronted by Varley, he accuses the Christian community of hypocrisy, due to their opposition to same-sex marriage.
“Jesus himself had two dads [and] turned out alright”, he says.
The same episode pokes fun at the Bible with an image of a dinosaur in white robes and a halo, above a tagline about God’s supposed views on sex.
Other episodes on the website show Varley – a comedian who also works for CBBC – claim the Queen does not have the right to discuss austerity, because she has “never done a day’s graft in her life” and call Prime Minister David Cameron a “f***ing idiot”.
His comments have come under criticism from a number of MPs, including Tory MP Damian Collins, of the Commons culture, media and sport committee, who said: ‘This is the type of content the BBC should have nothing to do with, let alone commission.
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‘I can’t understand how this was allowed to happen,” an outraged Collins told the Mail Online.
“It brings the BBC into disrepute … the BBC needs to explain why money from [its] budget has been used to benefit [family of staff].”
Labour MP Helen Goodman added that Ofcom should consider looking “at whether they have breached the broadcasting code.”
A BBC spokesman responded to the furore, saying: “We are urgently working with the people involved in running the scheme to ensure [BBC Raw] fully adheres to the BBC’s rigorous editorial standards.
“This is a pilot scheme where young people from a range of backgrounds can post their short, personal – and sometimes provocative – films about issues they care about on YouTube.”
The BBC recently came under fire – after it cut a joke out of an old episode of Top of the Pops over concerns it was homophobic.