http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/b...ws-how-intolerant-modern-britain-is-becoming/ It’s official: you are no longer allowed to express old-fashioned religious views on British TV. You’ll certainly be censured for doing so, and will be warned never to repeat your wicked words. That is the take-home lesson of the Evander Holyfield controversy. Holyfield, a former heavyweight boxing champ, is currently on Celebrity Big Brother on Channel 5. On Saturday night, in a chat with a fellow contestant, he expressed his Bible-informed belief that homosexuality is not natural. “The Bible lets you know there’s wrong, there’s right”, he said. And from his reading of the Bible he has deduced that homosexuality “ain’t normal”. He also expressed the view held by some Christian groups that homosexuality can be “fixed” through some kind of therapeutic intervention. Are his views outdated? Absolutely. Are they wrong? I believe so, and many others will, too. Are they offensive? To some I’m sure they were. But should Holyfield, and anyone else who is invited on to TV precisely to express him or herself and to be “real”, be allowed to give voice to such moral beliefs? I think they should; Channel 5 takes a very different view. Shortly after he made his comments, Holyfield was hauled into the diary room and told by “Big Brother” – that is, one of the producers of the show – that he had used “unacceptable language”. What they meant was that he had expressed an unacceptable idea. He had not used the q-word or the f-word to refer to gay people; he had simply expressed an idea, his inner belief that homosexuality is wrong. He was told that the expression of such views would not be tolerated. “You expressed the view that being gay was not normal and could be fixed”, said Big Brother. “While Big brother realises these are the view you hold, they are not the views held by many people in society, and expressing these views will be seen as offensive to many people.” This is extraordinary. What Channel 5 is effectively saying is that it’s okay for Holyfield to possess very outdated views about gay people but he is not allowed to express them, because they are not shared by “many people in society”. So what? Are we now only permitted to express views that chime with the mainstream outlook? Are no minority opinions, whether they come from Christians or Commies or 9/11 Truthers, allowed, even on a TV show that prides itself on capturing "real" life and interactions? Whatever happened to that great liberal John Stuart Mill’s insistence that, “If all mankind minus one were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person than he would be justified in silencing mankind”? Today, so cavalier have we become about the old Millian ideal of freedom of thought and speech for all – even for those who offend us – that we think nothing of censuring a man simply for expressing a view that is “not held by many people in society”. Big Brother, indeed. There is a great irony to this censuring of Holyfield, and to the fact that Channel 5 has been cheered for its censure by many gay rights activists and gay commentators. In the not-too-distant past, it was people who expressed favourable views of homosexuals in popular culture or on TV who would have been frowned upon, possibly finding themselves censured by the “moral majority”. They, too, would have been told that their views were weird and perverted and held only by a minority and possibly offensive to “many people in society”. For years and years, openly gay literature and culture faced censure by those who claimed to represent the decent, majoritarian outlook; how sad that some gays now support the censure of religious folk who are critical of homosexuality, again by the self-styled guardians of what “the many” think is right. There’s a further profound irony to the censuring of Evander Holyfield: it has been done in the name of tolerance yet it is actually a prime example of intolerance. In the name of promoting society-wide tolerance of homosexuals, we must not tolerate the expression of any criticisms of homosexuality, the anti-Holyfield lobby says. Singer Boy George has even suggested that, post-Holyfield, there should be a “huge sign” at customs saying: “Welcome to Britain – racism, sexism, homophobia and bad hair are not tolerated.” Remarkably, some people think such censuring and punishment of outdated views about women and minorities is a sign that Britain has become more tolerant. Actually it shows the opposite – that Britain is now astonishingly intolerant of anyone who holds the “wrong” views, views that run counter to mainstream thinking, and it will humiliate them in public if they dare to express themselves and warn them to keep their filthy ideologies to themselves. Intolerance is intolerance, whether its aim is to forbid the expression of gay love or to punish the expression of criticisms of homosexuality.