Exit Jade Goody, spirited away to a safe house, lest the disciples of British
tolerance tear her limb from limb.
So begins Mary Riddell's comment column in the Observer this past Sunday. As a so-called "race row" developed between a plain, loud, working-class (well, that's being generous, under-class in fact) young woman from Britain and a gorgeous, talented, wealthy and well-brought-up one from India, Britain spent the last seven days like this:
- Day one - glued to the telly, hoping for a hair-pulling girl on girl catfight
- Day two - realising that there was maybe some - um - racism at work here
- Day three - frantically disassociating themselves from such racism
- Day four - discovering that it wasn't that simple, there was a class dynamic as well; meanwhile busily pouring money into Channel 4's coffers to register their disgust/approval of Jade's bullying tactics
- Day five - as Jade is evicted, some found sympathy for her, while the tabloids ceased their orgy of asylum-seeker bashing to do some self-righteous racist bashing, without a second's pause to notice the irony
- Day six - Jade apologises, breaks down, apologises some more, weeps piteously (India for one is not entirely convinced) while the C4 executives cringe under the wrath of media critics and all and sundry proclaim (whew!) the death of the CBB and BB "format"
- Day seven - we put our feet up and have a nice cup of tea from the Paki shop