The 2000 Film “Almost Famous”;
How old are you?
How old are we really?
Actually I'm 16.
Me too. Isn't it funny? The truth
just sounds Different.
I watched “breakfast” on BBC today for 2 mins before I could not take it anymore. This media furore about Jeremy Clarkson’s comments on the public sector strike is ridiculous. If you look at what he said before he said that the ‘striking civil servants should be shot’ it was quite moderate and simply pointed out London was very quiet on the day of the strike (true). Then the presenters expressed surprise at his lack of vitriol! They wanted Clarkson to be more, well, more Clarkson-like! So he threw in a clear joke that they should all be shot just to please the presenters. (In some ways this may indicate he is becoming a parody of himself but that is beside the point.)
The point is it was a joke, and not an especially tasteful one, that attacked nobody personally. However these union types queue up to demand he be fired from the BBC! I mean we live in a democratic country with freedom of speech (within bounds) this kind of lack of any sense of humor would fit in nicely in a totalitarian state but otherwise people should just chill out. Instead the media makes a big deal of it spinning it out for days analyzing and commenting on a comment. Clearly the union leaders are enjoying the chance to extend their PR beyond the November 30th strike by lining up to condemn said comments but how does everyone involved feel when they go home at night and look in the mirror.
What I find funny abstracting myself from this situation is that it all appears to be theatre. These union chaps have to step up and play their part which is the ‘indignant, righteous union leader,’ as a few thousand of viewers played their part “the public offended on behalf of some notional group of ‘hard working teachers and nurses.’” Then the presenters play their part in stirring up reaction and so on. Whilst I can accept that in our society we are all actors, or advocates if you will, for our given jobs, roles, professions and allegiances the real issue is to remember that *you are acting.* If you forget this you lose your sense of humour and your sense of irony. Unison seeking legal advice on whether Clarkson should be referred to police is a case in point.
The truth just sounds different because, well, it sounds true. This is not what the news sounds like. Lowering the tone of our social discourse seems to be the aim of most live news media and current affairs shows. We all continue to live in the shadow of human nature but let us remember the comedy of it all while luxuriating in the tragedy.