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Musings on Jeremy Clarkson and the lastest Top Gear news #BBC

Trial by social media is a fact of life in the modern world, at least in the one that we like to think of as being civilised, but is something of a misnomer as social media is no better that mob rule.

I have little sympathy for Jeremy Clarkson because he brings all of this stuff down upon himself with monotonous regularity, so much so that I think that half the time it just helps sell books, DVDs, tickets etc and is little more than a publicity stunt. I don’t like his oafish behaviour and whilst I agree with the sentiments of a lot of what he comes out with that doesn’t redeem the rest, or at least not for me. His greatest black mark for me was his pronouncement, on Top Gear, that the Ford GT40 had won Le Mans four times in a row when that is patently untrue and as an experienced journalist he should know that. Whatever…

This latest row though has seen me spring to his defence and that is over the social media mob, and that includes some of my friends, actual and virtual, who have been screaming for his head over the allegations of him having hit a colleague.

It is for his employer to ascertain the facts and to deal with them in an appropriate manner and there is an established process to be gone through. Having one section of the mob campaigning for his reinstatement and another campaigning, seemingly, for the reintroduction of the death penalty is neither here nor there. Most of it is ill informed in any case and some of the latter element have even been showing their political bias in their comments which shows how far removed from reality they are.

For me Top Gear is a shadow of its former glory and I haven’t watched it four about four or five series now. At one time there was an element of intelligence in the content, but it began to be dumbed down as so many other TV programmes have been and that put me off. Clarkson himself I used to like, but his boorish screen persona I can’t take to and I have no wish to watch any programme that he is part of.

My personal dislike of him aside I cannot be part of the mob baying for his head. If he did assault a colleague then his employer has a variety of penalties that it can apply and it is up to them to conduct a fair and thorough investigation of the allegations. When they have done that they can make a decision on whether or not there is a case to answer for there is a world of difference between alleging that something happened and charging someone with an offense. At the time that this issue hit the news Mr Clarkson was alleged to have done something and that does not mean that he did. His suspension means little either because it is common practice to suspend parties where a serious disciplinary offense is alleged so that the investigation can be carried out impartially.

I find Mr Clarkson offensive; other don’t. Neither opinion should matter here for he is innocent until proven otherwise. I may not like what he has to say, but I will not see him pilloried unjustly.


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