From Peter Okell
ASTRONGLY WORDED protest at the declining standards of BBC radio and television programmes has gone this week to the Director General of the Corporation and to the Controller of Television Programmes.
The protest, backed by hundreds of signatures. has been compiled by the North West Branch of the Look Listen movement and represents Catholics all over Lancashire.
Accusing the BBC of violating its Charter and in some instances of bringing the standard of television programmes down to a "dirty" night club level, the protest was compiled at the annual conference of the Look Listen movement held here today.
The BBC is violating its charter by "permitting the broadcasting of material on radio and TV which is immoral, irreligious and anti social", says the protest.
Stating that they have "detailed evidence", the protest designates radio and TV material as offensive by reason of its being: a) Immoral, Sex "jokes" for example. These are an insult to God and an offence to family life; also the morbid highlighting of unsavoury news items.
b) Irreligious: e.g. the guying of religious institutions and persons.
c) Anti-social: e.g. the ridiculing of heads of state and persons in authority. The BBC is bound by Charter to uphold authority and to leave political action to politicians.
Claiming the right "even as a minority" to "hear and see all BBC broadcasts without being given offence", the Group points out that "this right belongs to us as citizens financing the BBC by the payment of our fees".
The protest sees the current drop in standards as originating in the TV programme billed as "That Was The Week That Was", and gradually spreading lo Other pitogrammes.
Considering the lapse to be "the fault of an irresponsible minority of BBC governors, directors and producers", the protest called upon their colleagues to repudiate and remedy it.
"We consider that the BBC 'air' belongs to the community and not to the entertainment industry, and that there is no room in it for 'dirty' night club entertainment," it continues.
The protest concludes: "The BBC belongs to us and to our families and even as a minority we have the right to demand that it should not harm them. We believe that we speak for many others who know no way to make their views known. We have chosen this way. If it is unsuccessful we shall have to find other methods."