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From The Socialist newspaper, 25 January 2007

Endemol defends racist abuse

You would have to be stuck in the Antarctic or adrift in an open boat (lucky you) to have missed the row over the bullying and abuse of one of the contestants in the strangely named Celebrity Big Brother.

Following criticism of the "celebrity" credentials of the participants, a couple of genuine celebrities Leo Sayer and Ken Russell (who were just a little past their sell-by date) deserted the house. Then a way of boosting the ratings seemed to fall into Endemol's lap with the ignorant racist abuse directed at Shilpa Shetty by multi-millionaire Jade Goody.

It will be remembered that Endemol swore to ensure George Galloway did not use the Big Brother house as a platform for anti-war sentiments. They used the situation to make George Galloway appear foolish - aided and abetted by George Galloway of course. In contrast, they have continued to defend their broadcasting of racist abuse on the grounds that it is not really racist as such.

In the past, there was a term 'racialism' which was applied to distrust and hostility towards other races based on ignorance. This was differentiated from 'racism' which they defined as the manipulation of racialism to stir up hatred. It seems clear that Jade Goody's abuse is an example of the former rather than the latter.

Under pressure, Endemol have muttered about donating a fraction of their obscene profits from this imbroglio to charity but the set-up of Big Brother ensures they continue to profit whatever happens.

Derek McMillan

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In The Socialist 25 January 2007:

Striking to defend public services

Trade unions must give a lead


War and terrorism

Iraq: build for 24 February protest

'No to the US base'


Socialist Party news and analysis

Labour's super-rich friend

Behind the bonus bonanza

Save our school buses

Support the paper that fights for a socialist future


Big Brother

Big Brother viewers reject racist bullying

New Labour hypocrites wade into Big Brother row

Endemol defends racist abuse


Workplace news and analysis

Strike ballots show willingness to fight

British Airways in more battles with workforce

London Underground workers ballot for strike over pay


Socialist Party NHS campaign

NHS still needs national demo

New Labour leads the big-business assault

A socialist programme for the NHS


Socialist Party Marxist analysis

When will the bubbles burst?


Socialist Students

Join the national day of protest on 22 February

Building for the 22 February Day of Action


International socialist news and analysis

Sri Lanka: anti-war organiser attacked

Workers brave regime's bullets


 

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