Jeremy Clarkson has defended Len Goodman, after the former Strictly Come Dancing judge was blasted after describing what his grandmother thought of curry powder.
During the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations, Len appeared alongside MasterChef’s John Torode to chat about the celebrations with host Kirsty Young, when he was asked, during a conversation on street parties, whether he was a cook.
He quickly responded: ’No, I’m hopeless, honestly. My wife did Coronation chicken yesterday for our tea and I’ve never had it before.
‘I’ve never had curry and curry powder, you know, my nan used to call it all “foreign muck”’ he explained, prompting a laugh from John.
‘I was always worried about it,’ he continued. ‘But I must say, it was ridiculous. It was really tasty.’
After the comment was met with outrage from viewers, with the BBC confirming Clare Balding’s apology for anyone who may have been ‘offended’ was about 78-year-old Len’s answer, Jeremy has defended the dancer.
According to Jeremy, ‘everyone with spots and hormonal issues’ claimed ‘this colonial and racist attitude is exactly what’s wrong with privileged white men today’, while also accusing the BBC of having ‘the same spinal integrity as a sea anemone’ for its apology.
Insisting he’s had ‘enough of this nonsense’, the Grand Tour host highlighted Len’s age, writing the dancer was ‘brought up on a diet of Alf Garnett and Leonard Rossiter, who routinely made jokes about black people and women’, seemingly as an excuse.
‘That’s the world Len’s from,’ Jeremy wrote in his column for The Times yesterday. ‘That’s his nature, and his nurture. And yet he’s adapted. He’s changed. He’s realised the world of his childhood should now be seen as muddle-headed and wrong…’
Jeremy went on to say Len shouldn’t be criticised ‘for saying how things used to be’ but instead ‘praised for having the wit and the strength of character to change his ways’.
The presenter then went on to accuse people of finding new ‘things that expose the meanness that lives in all white heterosexuals’, such as ‘new pronouns and new prejudices’.
He wrote: ‘Well, sorry, but if we leave aside the consequences of war, it’s fair to say that no generation at any point in history has had to change as much or as quickly as mine has. And, frankly, what Len Goodman and I would like now from the acne-ingrained youths and the social media warriors is a bit of gratitude. And an acceptance that we are allowed to say that some food from abroad isn’t very nice.’