Petition as Clarkson suspended for ‘fracas’
Jeremy Clarkson fans have already started an online petition after the BBC suspended the Top Gear host “following a fracas” with a producer.
The presenter has lurched from controversy to controversy in recent months — offending foreign diplomats, viewers, MPs, and his own bosses at the Beeb.
This Sunday’s episode will not go ahead, the BBC said.
Clarkson watchers were quick to respond with wisecracks and support as news of his suspension began to sink in.
Comedian and television presenter David Baddiel joked that Clarkson “has been suspended following ‘a Fracas’. Who makes them, Citroen?”
The controversial character Dapper Laughs, whose jokes about rape and homelessness caused massive offence that led to his TV show being cancelled and a national tour being pulled, tweeted: “Hope the Jeremy Clarkson comeback video isn’t better then mine.”
Journalist and Clarkson’s long-time sparring partner Piers Morgan made the offer: “I’m available. #TopGear”
Clarkson was put on what was called his final warning last year following a racism row during filming of the programme.
In recent years he has been cleared of breaching the broadcasting code by watchdog Ofcom after comparing a Japanese car to people with growths on their faces and faced a storm of protest from mental health charities after branding people who throw themselves under trains as ”selfish”.
He was also forced to apologise for telling BBC1’s The One Show that striking workers should be shot, but it is the claims of racism that have really damaged his standing with the corporation.
Top Gear is one of the BBC’s biggest moneyspinners, pulling in millions of pounds from a devoted — and international — audience. Its latest series was given a global launch with a simultaneous broadcast in more than 50 countries.
Clarkson has so far remained silent about the suspension on his Twitter feed.
Right-wing blogger Guido Fawkes started a petition urging the broadcaster to rethink its position, which thousands of Clarkson fans had signed last night.
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