LDV readers say: BBC not justified in banning Carol Thatcher

by Stephen Tall on February 11, 2009

Last week, in the wake of the whipped-up hysteria surrounding Carol Thatcher being banned by the BBC from The One Show for using the term ‘golliwog’, LDV asked our readers if you thought the corporation was justified in its actions.

Here’s how you voted:

Yes, the BBC was justified – 44% (116 votes)
No, the BBC wasn’t justified – 52% (139)
Don’t know – 4% (11)
Total Votes: 266. Poll ran: 5th-10th February 2009

So, a bare majority of you think the BBC over-reacted to Carol Thatcher’s use of racially-loaded language.

The poll was picked-up by the Telegraph’s James Kirkup, who used it as a hook to make a wider argument:

Ever since the party’s creation, the Liberal Democrats have had an ambigious attitude to liberty, embodying what philosophers call the positive vs negative liberty debate.

In essence, a sizeable chunk of Lib Dems (especially the ex SDP lot) aren’t too keen on the idea of letting people spend, speak and generally live as they wish, believing instead that the benign state should help them reach their full potentiall, usually by taxing them and stopping them doing the things they enjoy.

The other strand of Lib Demmery tends more to the idea of liberty as freedom from interference and constraint: do what you like as long as you don’t harm others, in essence. … Anyway, [this poll’s] the latest straw in the wind, which suggests that JS Mill is still beating TH Green, so to speak.

All interesting stuff, though of course Lib Dem Voice polls are open to any and all of our readers, no matter what their political allegiance. By the way, do have a browse through the Telegraph reader comments, which are quite charmingly dotty.