By Andrew Allison, Chief Executive
In his (now deleted) Sun column before Christmas, Jeremy Clarkson took aim at the Duchess of Sussex. He used an analogy from Games of Thrones, which I have never watched before, and his words describing how he felt about her were strong.
I was interviewed on GB News about it, and I said that although I wouldn't have phrased my criticism of the Duchess of Sussex in the way he did, he clearly didn't advocate physical violence against her: he was using metaphors. I felt that it was a storm in a teacup, that MPs had jumped on a virtue-signalling bandwagon when they started making demands from the editor of The Sun, and that after Clarkson's mea culpa, it would blow over as we all prepared for Christmas Day. Sadly I was wrong. (Click here to listen to my interview on GB News)
Instead, the cancelling of Jeremy Clarkson has begun. Amazon has indicated it will not commission any more seasons of Clarkson’s Farm or The Grand Tour and his Sun column has not appeared in the newspaper again. Clarkson also presents Who Wants to be a Millionaire? on ITV, whose Chief Executive, Dame Carolyn McCall, was responsible for Piers Morgan leaving Good Morning Britain after he said he did not believe anything the duchess said during her interview (along with Prince Harry) with Oprah Winfrey. It is said that the duchess complained personally to Dame Carolyn. It is now looking as if she is going to get another scalp, despite Clarkson calling Prince Harry on Christmas Day apologising for his column. Despite trying to appear as the nicest and most caring people in the world, Harry and Meghan rejected this apology and are now baying for blood.
Our friends at the Free Speech Union have launched a petition urging Dame Carolyn not to fire Clarkson. I have signed that petition in a personal capacity, along with more than 18,000 other people. If you would like to sign it, you can do so by clicking here.
Everyone makes mistakes, and in the cold light of day, Clarkson has realised that he should have used his words more carefully, but that isn't a reason to destroy the man's television career.
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