Couldn’t help but write something about Strictly Come Dancing here. A contender in this ridiculous excuse for public service television made a racist comment. He apologised and put his head down … only for Bruce Forsyth (apparently a ‘much loved’ TV personality) to leap into the fray and stuff both his feet into his mouth by telling everyone to lighten up a bit. Apparently ‘the nation [there is only the one of course] should get a “sense of humour”‘. Bruce equates racist terminology to ‘nicknames’ that we can all have a bit of a laugh about and get over:
“We used to have a sense of humour about this,” Forsyth told TalkSport. “You go back 25, 30, 40 years and there has always been a bit of humour about the whole thing. At one time the Americans used to call us ‘limeys’ which doesn’t sound very nice, but we used to laugh about it. Everybody has a nickname. And Anton is such a sweet guy, it’s such a terrible shame.”
The world has clearly become too politically correct for Brucey when a sweet, sensitive semi-celebrity can’t racially abuse another as a bit of fun. Balibar saw nationalism and racism as two sides of the same coin. Bruce’s reaction to this affair arguably highlights the persistence of what Jacobson terms the ‘racial boundary’ of Britishness.