The ABC’s ‘Q&A’ programme on 28 April was to be about republican change in Australia.
But because of the refusal of the BBC to allow its feed on the Royal Wedding to be used as material for the Chasers programme, one panellist was demoted to the audience to be replaced by the Chasers' Craig Reucassel , a republican.
…balance: 5 republicans to 2 monarchists…
So the panel consisted of four republicans -"Aboriginal activist Marcia Langton; Howard Government Minister and republican Amanda Vanstone; rejected wedding commentator Craig Reucassel; and former Labor Premiere of New South Wales and republican Bob Carr."
There were two monarchists "Howard Government minister and monarchist Nick Minchin and entertainment reporter and monarchist Angela Bishop".
As well there was a presenter who is obviously a republican. A fine sense of balance, 5:2.
…Duke of Edinburgh…
During the course of the programme, a “skit “ which was to have been included in the Chasers programme for theRoyal Wedding was shown . It was about the Duke of Edinburgh.
Now the Duke of Edinburgh enlisted in the Royal Navy straight from school in 1939. He was clearly good student at Dartmouth and later at Portsmouth. He served in the Indian Ocean, protecting Australian convoys and later at the Battle of Crete where he was mentioned in dispatches.
He was awarded the Greek War Cross of Valour and was involved in the invasion of Sicily. He was in Tokyo Bay with the British Pacific Fleet at the time of the Japanese surrender.
Given that he was a volunteer , we may assume that he was opposed to Nazism and all that it stood for.
The skit ended with the following:
Queen Elizabeth II (watching a film of Adolf Hitler): What's he saying?Prince Philip: Oh, I'm not sure. But if it's about Jews, I agree with all of it.
This is disgraceful and demonstrates why the BBC would not allow a wedding ceremony to be tainted by the Chasers.
Their freedom of speech was in no way restrained. All that happened was that the BBC reminded that its property was not to be abused.The Chasers have been known to cross the line, for example their “skit’ about a child dying of cancer.It is inconceivable that their skits- racist, bawdy, vulgar and often insensitive should be used in relation to a wedding ceremony.
As we asked recently, will the ABC management next have the Chasers accompanying state funerals?
The management of the ABC have demonstrated a serious absence of good sense and professionalism.We have separately commented here on the use of an unsourced and unsubstantiated story of an alleged conversation between the Duke and The Queen without the viewers being warned that its veracity was highly questionable. Parliament should investigate just what is happening in this publicly funded corporation.