Radio-Canada: what moralizing police! | JDM
Last Friday at Upside-down worldDany Laferrière pronounced the title of his first book How to Make Love to a Negro Without Getting Tired.
Luckily it happened at TVA.
Because if the program had been live on Radio-Canada, Stéphan Bureau should have:
- prevent Dany Laferrière by all means from repeating the N-word;
- apologize to the audience as soon as his guest says the N-word and…
- when the segment was replayed, the video would have been purged of the N-word.
Yes, according to the new rules of Radio-Canada, the small police of the language must release the soap to clean the mouth of the delinquents.
1984 OR 2022?
This is Boris Proulx from To have to who told us yesterday that Radio-Canada had made public its Guidelines on offensive language, after a request to do so from the CRTC.
Here is the excerpt that made me jump to the ceiling: « In the event of an unexpected and unjustifiable broadcast of offensive language by a guest during the live broadcast, the presenter or journalist acts in a way to reduce the risk that the guest repeats offensive remarks during the interview and apologizes to the audience if deemed necessary in the context of the program. Offensive language whose rebroadcast has no editorial justification must be removed if the interview is rebroadcast or made available on demand on CBC/Radio-Canada platforms.”
And what are those offensive words? The list is both very long, very broad… and very vague… “’Offensive language’ refers to language that is abusive, degrading or unduly discriminatory, stereotypical or negative with regard to race, national origin or ethnicity, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status or physical or mental disability”. (What does marital status have to do with that?).
Radio-Canada also ruled that “warnings” or “audience notices” may be required before the broadcast of segments deemed offensive, in order to “mitigate their impact”.
Misery: what madness, what moralizing police!
On the Radio-Canada site, we also learn that the broadcaster must comply with the rules of the CAB (Canadian Association of Broadcasters) which prohibits: « to unduly deride the myths, traditions or practices of certain groups because race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status or physical or mental disability”.
Can we no longer criticize religious practices? Or the retrograde myths of certain communities? Can we no longer question the extreme ideologies of certain minorities?
WHO WILL DECIDE?
One of the intellectuals I admire the most, the late Christopher Hitchens, once gave a lecture in which he posed a fundamental question: « Who do you give the right to decide what speech is offensive and who is an offensive speaker? ? (…) To whom are you going to delegate the right to decide for you what you can read, to whom are you going to delegate the right to decide for you what you can hear? »
My answer to Hitchens’ question: I don’t grant Radio-Canada, CRTC or CAB the right to decide what I can read and hear.