BBC refuses to televise Tyson Fury fights
The headline is, of course, bunkum. The BBC has not refused to televise Tyson Fury fights because the State broadcaster shows no meaningful boxing, just as it transmits no live Premier League football or club rugby, The Open golf tournament, fishing and international cricket.
What the BBC will do, however, is dream up a boring televised AGM awards do, call it – get this – BBC Sports Personality of the Year Awards, and then agonise over the inclusion of any sportsman or woman who refuses to let only their feet or fists do the talking.
And so it is that Tyson Fury, the world heavyweight boxing champion, finds his position as a State TV-endorsed personality under threat because he said a woman “belongs in the kitchen” and “on her back”. Fury also considers homosexuality a crime against the Christian God he wears on his sleeve. For his sins, Fury is being investigated by Britain’s thought police.
Fury is clearly a bigot. Anyone who hears him talk and finds themselves nodding is most likely punch drunk or pitifully – but not criminally – thick.
But he is a more than decent boxer. Beating Wladimir Klitschko to become world heavyweight champion was admirable. He out-boxed his opponent. He did not out-opinion him. He didn’t have to. The debating society is not so rough. A decent right hook can secure you a top job in the Labour Party, but that mob are desperate and flailing.
Neither was the fight a battle of morals. You like Mohammed Ali, the boxer voted BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year twice? You know his view on race? Here’s a dose:
Last year’s winner of the BBC shindig was Lewis Hamilton – the British tax-exile who lives in Switzerland.
Don’t vote for the morals or the words – vote for the sporting achievement.
If you watch a football match and find yourself wondering, “I’m unsure about entering the war in Syria, so I’ll wait and see if Andy Murray wins this point. If he does, I think we should start bombing” you need psychiatric help.
Of course, you’ll have to watch the champions on a broadcaster other than the BBC, which largely eschews sport as a battle of skill, preferring to spend its days inviting the audience to answer the saddest question of all, as it put it to them via Radio 5 Live: “Are sportsman role models”. What it means, of course, is are these athletes cheered by the guileless unknowing, the great unwashed, the kind of people who read red-top tabloids and watch sport in pubs – a demographic so brainless and lacking in parental guidance they see Wayne Rooney as a father figure? Do people not like us see sportsman as role models?
To which we’d say: is the BBC a role model? That question to you, Tyson Fury.