Mark Drakeford condemns ‘abhorrent’ Jimmy Carr joke as he prepares to perform in Cardiff
The First Minister has condemned as “abhorrent” a joke made by Jimmy Carr as the comedian prepares to perform in Cardiff next Monday.
On his Netflix special His Dark Material on Christmas Day, Jimmy Carr had said that no one mentioned the “thousands of gypsies that were killed by the Nazis” because “no one wants to talk about the positives”.
Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price asked Mark Drakeford in the Senedd to call of Cardiff Council to cancel the performance.
“While the spectre of fascism is stalking Europe again, the comedian Jimmy Carr is still refusing to apologise for implying that the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Gypsies at the hands of the Nazis was somehow something to be celebrated,” Adam Price said.
“Next Monday, he is performing in our capital city at St David’s Hall. Welsh Gypsies are asking the venue to cancel the performance in solidarity with them. St David’s Hall is owned and managed by Cardiff Council and subsidised by the Arts Council of Wales, which the Welsh Government funds.
“As First Minister, and indeed as leader of the Labour Party in Wales, will you ask the Labour leadership of Cardiff Council to agree to the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities’ entirely reasonable demand, in the circumstances, that no publicly funded venue should be a platform for an unrepentant purveyor of racist tropes?
“If they refuse to do so, will you ask the arts council to urgently review the terms of its funding?”
Mark Drakeford replied that it “wasn’t as easy” as Cardiff Council cancelling the performance.
“The views attributed to the individual are absolutely unacceptable and would be condemned by anybody, I think, in this Chamber,” Mark Drakeford said.
“We spoke only last week about our concerns for Gypsy/Traveller communities, and we discussed those at some length in the policing board for Wales, which my colleague Jane Hutt and I attended.
“If it were as simple as issuing an edict and putting things right, then of course we would be able to do that, but I know from what I have heard from Cardiff Council that it simply isn’t as easy as that.
“The views expressed are abhorrent to my colleagues in Cardiff Council, as they are to all of us here, and I’m sure that those sentiments will be powerfully conveyed.”
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