I was looking forward to The Graham Norton Christmas Show. I am a huge Helen Mirren fan, and she was a guest and made a statement on that show. I had checked ahead several days ago. That show was scheduled for Christmas Eve on BBCA. Dame Helen was listed as a guest along with Will Smith and Noemie Harris. Now, suddenly, that show will not air. Why not? Is it possibly because Dame Helen had this to say about 2016?
She was quite outspokenly anti-Brexit and anti-Trump. She appeared at a huge Broadway fundraiser for Hillary whom she supported heartily.
Given Trump’s media connections, one has to wonder why that show, which normally airs on Saturday nights at 10 pm EDT has been replaced. I checked my Verizon listings about five days ago, and it was listed. Now, mysteriously it is not. So WTF???
Is this the beginning of censorship of the media? We should wonder.
Tonight I watched the Royal Shakespeare Company’s 400th Anniversary of the Bard’s death on PBS. Dame Helen appeared with a host of others. Most impressively, Sir Ian McKellen performed a monologue of Sir Thomas More from a play that was never published. It was the most enlightening moment. Here is some background. There is a video of Sir Ian performing the monologue.
The play The Book of Sir Thomas More contains a series of scenes covering the events of the May Day riots of 1517, within the period covered by this project. Immigrants from Lombardy in Northern Italy are being threatened by Londoners who accuse them of taking jobs and money from the locals, and want them to be deported back to where they came from. The same arguments were being put forward at the time the play was written, with respect to Huguenot migrants. The play was never completed and exists in manuscript form in the British Library. In a series of speeches written by Shakespeare, Thomas More makes the argument for the humane treatment of those forced to seek asylum by being expelled from their home land. It’s surely never been made more persuasively.
The play was never completed. One can speculate as to why not. Here is the script. I would love to hear it read by many on Inauguration Day. Loudly!
Grant them removed, and grant that this your noise
Hath chid down all the majesty of England;
Imagine that you see the wretched strangers,
Their babies at their backs and their poor luggage,
Plodding to the ports and coasts for transportation,
And that you sit as kings in your desires,
Authority quite silent by your brawl,
And you in ruff of your opinions clothed;
What had you got? I’ll tell you: you had taught
How insolence and strong hand should prevail,
How order should be quelled; and by this pattern
Not one of you should live an aged man,
For other ruffians, as their fancies wrought,
With self same hand, self reasons, and self right,
Would shark on you, and men like ravenous fishes
Would feed on one another….
Say now the king
Should so much come too short of your great trespass
As but to banish you, whether would you go?
What country, by the nature of your error,
Should give you harbour? go you to France or Flanders,
To any German province, to Spain or Portugal,
Nay, any where that not adheres to England,
Why, you must needs be strangers: would you be pleased
To find a nation of such barbarous temper,
That, breaking out in hideous violence,
Would not afford you an abode on earth,
Whet their detested knives against your throats,
Spurn you like dogs, and like as if that God
Owed not nor made not you, nor that the claimants
Were not all appropriate to your comforts,
But chartered unto them, what would you think
To be thus used? this is the strangers case;
And this your mountainish inhumanity.
Let’s read this on Inauguration Day! Let’s be loud!
Here is the link to the jolly and complete Graham Norton Christmas Show that was wiped off the air. Shame on you BBCA for deleting this show! Spines of jellyfish!
This is only the beginning. Today, Trump promised that things will be different after January 20.