Bottom of the barrel

Queen graphic from the Yoto music player website

Following in the ridiculous footsteps of the Daily Mail and Daily Telegraph, The Spectator is the latest publication to get in on the manufactured outrage over the supposed censorship of Queen’s Fat Bottomed Girls. According to the article by noted thought leader Richard Madeley, what we’re seeing is “neopuritanical cultural censorship”.

For the benefit of people whose mouths don’t move when they read, the background to this story is that Queen licensed its music to Yoto, a music player for toddlers. Yoto makes its target audience very clear: it describes itself as “Yoto, the screen-free music player for children”. And Yoto has decided not to include the song, which is quite clearly about having sex with fat women, in its child-friendly version of Queen’s music. I imagine it probably wouldn’t include NWA’s Fuck Tha Police, Cardi B’s WAP or The Sex Pistols’ Belsen Was A Gas either.

As much as I like to imagine Richard Madeley playing the entirety of Flux of Pink Indians’ The Fucking Cunts Treat Us Like Pricks to soundtrack a four-year-old’s birthday party, I don’t believe for a moment that he doesn’t think there are some forms of media that are not appropriate for children – and I’m pretty sure that if Fat Bottomed Girls were Fat Bottomed Boys, he’d be leading the charge to ban it for adults and children alike.

I honestly don’t know whether these outrage farmers really believe the shit that they write and publish, but it doesn’t really matter: it’s just more grist to the grievance mill, a machine powered by bullshit whose only product is spluttering bile and whose job is to make its solipsistic readers red-faced with rage.