There could hardly be a more fitting surname for Mr Tyson Fury who last month, defeated Mr Wladimir Klitschko to become the WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO and “The Ring” magazine unified heavyweight champion – not so much for the skill and measure of Mr Fury’s pugilism but for the fury resulting from his comments about homosexuality and women after the fight.
Indeed, were one writing a novel, it is likely that the publisher would suggest a more “realistic” surname and not one that would tend to be the sort found in a Marvel comic. Nevertheless, Tyson Luke Fury is the name that appears on Mr Fury’s birth certificate and the furore caused by the boxer’s statements are the reason for Mr Fury being the subject of a British Gazette article.
In particular the news reported by such as the Guardian newspaper (GOTO: http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2015/dec/08/tyson-fury-bbc-director-general-tony-hall-sports-personality-of-the-year?utm_source=esp&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=GU+Today+main+NEW+H&utm_term=142452&subid=15907465&CMP=EMCNEWEML6619I2) that Greater Manchester Police are launching an investigation having received a report of a “hate crime” following comments made about homosexuality on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme.
Greater Manchester Police stated: “We can confirm that at 10.30am this morning we received a report of a hate crime follow comments made about homosexuality on the Victoria Derbyshire programme,” AND “As with all hate crime we are taking it extremely seriously and will be attending the victim’s address to take a statement in due course.”
Mr Fury did not appear on the Victoria Derbyshire programme, but his uncle and trainer, Mr Peter Fury, gave an interview in which he suggested that the boxer needed to apologise for linking homosexuality to paedophilia.
Mr Fury is of course not the first gentleman to end up “helping the police with their enquiries” vis-à-vis their views about homosexuality.
In our article of 24th March (http://www.british-gazette.co.uk/2015/03/24/rip-freedom-of-expression/) we reported upon the travails of Mr Mike Overd whose appeal we are pleased to report will take place on 11th December at Taunton Magistrates Court. For those wishing more information about Mr Overd, GOTO: https://www.premierchristianradio.com/News/UK/Street-preacher-to-appeal-public-order-conviction
The British Gazette would suggest to it’s readers that whatever opinions they may hold about Mr Fury and his opinions, Mr Fury should be able to make the comments he has without fearing prosecution.
Insofar as the comments themselves are concerned, we would suggest that as Fred, Scrooge’s nephew said of his miserly uncle; “…..his offences carry their own punishment…..” For in Mr Fury’s case the punishment is heavy indeed and will far outstrip any financial penalty imposed by the courts in the hypothetical scenario of him being convicted of any alleged offence.
This is because a boxer’s professional career is invariably short and to maximise the rewards sponsorship and endorsement by commercial organisations is crucial. Given these remarks it is extraordinarily unlikely that Mr Fury will be able to obtain much in the way of lucrative contracts.
Thus it is that case that Mr Fury will have already received a hefty penalty for expressing his opinions.
It is the opinion of the British Gazette that any prosecution of Mr Fury would be outrageous and would be another nail in the coffin of freedom of expression in this formerly sovereign state.
For those wishing for more details about the origin of the Dickens quote: Herewith from the novel:
“He’s a comical old fellow,” said Scrooge’s nephew, “that’s the truth; and not so pleasant as he might be. However, his offences carry their own punishment, and I have nothing to say against him.”
Background: Fred is Ebenezer Scrooge’s nephew and only living relative in A Christmas Carol. Fred is also a gentleman of some means, but unlike his miserly uncle, he is a kind-hearted, generous, cheerful, and optimistic man who loves Christmas. Fred believes that there is good to be found in everyone, even his misanthropic uncle Scrooge, whom he invites to Christmas dinner every year despite constant rejection. Fred believes that the good in Scrooge can be brought to the surface.
Fred is the son of Scrooge’s sister Fran, who died many years before the story begins. Scrooge, who loved his sister very much, never accepted her death, and the sight of Fred unfailingly reminds him of the grief he still feels from her loss. This is one reason for Scrooge’s antipathy towards his nephew; another is Fred’s unceasingly cheerful attitude, which is anathema to Scrooge’s cynical personality.