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Ding Dong Thatcher row - Why freedom of expression trumps taste

The BBC's rather comic 'compromise' in playing seven seconds of a 58-second protest song is itself an ironic reminder of Margaret Thatcher's term in office.

For all the rhetoric about her as champion of liberty, it was Thatcher's censorship that necessitated the 'compromise' on the BBC of actors performing a voiceover for the words of Sinn Fein.

Tony Hall's defence on grounds of taste and respect would carry weight in the context of a family calling for a private mourning.

Instead, the funeral has been planned as a public event. The campaign song is populist dissent.

Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead may seem a clumsy protest, but if we consider freedom of expression as important, it is so regardless of whether the mode is distasteful, disrespectful, or banal.


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