George Carey, former Archbishop of Canterbury, weighed in a couple of days ago (not sure how I missed it) on the BBC unequivocally NOT BANNING THE USE OF AD/BC: ‘Why are we letting the BBC abandon the Year of our Lord?’.
This myth is interesting because we’ve all been there at the inception of it – that first article plastered on the Mail on Sunday front page. We’ve all known from the off – simply by reading the whole article – that it was complete rubbish and every single idiot that has repeated it since whilst frothing away at a keyboard should hang up their rage-worn fingers in shame. If they did we could kiss goodbye to the following ‘writers':
- James Deliingpole
- Richard Littlejohn
- Melanie Phillips
- Steve Doughty
- Boris Johnson
What a wonderful world that would be.
Anyway, Tabloid Watch has carefully documented the way this myth has been happily repeated by people who must be aware that it is a complete lie, but just don’t care. It’s even won the Tabloid Bullshit of the Month award – for which it was necessary for the award to be issued to everybody writing at both the Mail on Sunday and the Daily Mail.
Anyway, in wades the Bishop irrespective of all this:
Dionysius Exiguus would be dumbfounded at the attempts by the BBC to issue guidelines that amount to ditching the well-known terms in our calendar, BC and AD…
[so] why does the BBC wish to challenge and, we assume, discard this ancient usage?
Wait, sorry Mr Carey, did you just write ‘assume’? You ‘assume’ they are trying to ‘challenge’ or ‘discard’ BC/AD but surely you’ve had enough time to look into the matter? I will not bore you with the whole piece of persecution-complex drivel but I will pick out a few classic Daily-Mail-reader/writer devices/ For example, the classic ‘I’m not… but’ used here:
I am trying to be charitable to the BBC in not seeing this as a deliberate attempt to sideline the Christian faith, but I am quite sure that it amounts to a denial of our Christian heritage.
Breathtaking. Absolutely breathtaking. Just re-read that a couple of times to appreciate the mental leap it takes to join those two opposed ideas together in one sentence.
Next up, wheel out some more tabloid lies to support the lie you’re currently writing about:
The BBC changes are only a symptom of this crisis of historical memory.
We have recently seen the police investigate a cafe owner for displaying biblical texts. Street preachers have been arrested for handing out leaflets about the Christian faith. Nurses and other workers have been barred from wearing crosses.
A doctor is currently being investigated for praying with and for a patient.
The cafe owner was spoken to after the police received complaints that what was being displayed was homophobic – nothing to do with it being a Christian text. Nurses have to remove all jewelry – and a cross is not classed as being an essential part of the Christian faith – i.e. it is not standard practice to wear one, but personal choice (see Bill Hicks on why Christians should perhaps stop wearing them). Basically, tabloid stories about Christians being persecuted should always be taken with a huge dose of salt, not repeated as fact to support the lie you’re currently spreading.
To round off a thoroughly ignorant article Mr Carey finishes with a wish I’ve read all too often lately:
I would like to think that the BBC might rethink the guidelines it has sent out to its programme directors but, if that is too much to expect, is it too much to hope that presenters will use their intelligence and ignore such silly and yet potentially harmful advice?
Editorial decision rests with each producer / presenter Mr Carey, hence why the Daily Mail have also been moaning that different programmes switch between the two – and some programmes even use the terms interchangeably. I do recall watching QI on the weekend and Stephen Fry used BC. What you ‘would like to think’ about the BBC is actually the reality, had you only looked briefly into the matter you could have avoided inflicting your stupidity on the world.
For once, I will leave the (almost) last word to the utterly, utterly brilliant Mail sub who wrote this caption underneath a photo of George Carey:
I could not think of a more fitting term.
With thanks to Metaltoast for pointing out this article to me.