Celebrities

Graham Norton explains why cancel culture is nonsense in just three minutes

'In what world do you cancel?': Graham Norton criticises cancel culture
Times Radio

Over the last few years, “cancel culture” has become a buzzword - typically used in situations when a person believes they have been unduly criticised for something they’ve said or done.

But increasingly people are coming to understand that the phrase is essentially meaningless, especially when those who use it – in a newspaper column or on Twitter to their thousands of followers, for example – still have a major platform from which to speak.

BBC presenter Graham Norton summed it up perfectly in an interview with Times Radio as he explained how cancel culture isn’t real.

Norton said: “You read a lot of articles in papers, by people complaining about cancel culture, and you think, in what world are you cancelled? I’m reading your article in a newspaper, or you’re doing interviews about how terrible it is to be cancelled.

“The word is the wrong word. I think the word should be ‘accountability’.”

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The veteran host then went on to discuss the actor John Cleese who he suggested has been complaining about being cancelled, and who also happens to have been given his own show on GB News.

Norton explained: “John Cleese has been very public recently about complaining about what you guys say. And I just think it must be very hard to be a man of a certain age, who’s been able to say whatever he likes for years, and now suddenly there’s some accountability.

“It’s free speech, but not consequence-free.”

Norton was also asked a question about JK Rowling, who has been criticised for expressing “transphobia”. But, in response, Norton said that rather than focus on what a celebrity has to say about transgender folks, he'd rather “talk to trans people, talk to the parents of trans kids, talk to doctors, talk to psychiatrists, talk to someone who can illuminate this in some way”.

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