April 12, 2013


BBC Will Censor Most of "Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead" in Deference to Margaret Thatcher

Andrew Yates / AFP / Getty Images
Andrew Yates / AFP / Getty Images

Morrissey wasn't the only Brit gloating over Margaret Thatcher's death. After the Iron Lady's passing, sales for The Wizard of Oz track "Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead" skyrocketed as part of a politically-motivated prank campaign slamming the controversial conservative leader. Analysts predict the single will enter the Top 5 on the UK charts, if not hit No. 1.

That's a problem for stuffed-shirts over at the BBC. With this Thatcher "tribute" gaining real traction, they've been furrowing their brows and misplacing their monocles while trying to figure out how they can reasonably get away with not playing an official chart hit when the BBC counts down the Official Chart Show this Sunday.

But don't worry! They've managed to weasel out of this pickle by announcing they will play "four or five seconds" of the song during the pop countdown. In a rather infuriating interview, Radio 1 controller Ben Cooper explained that although he believes the song to be "disrespectful" and a "personal attack," he will allow "a clip of the track [to be played] within a journalistic environment."

If they're only going to play a snippet—which Cooper admitted may not even include the words "the witch is dead"—why bother playing it at all? Well, Mr. Cooper told the BBC he was worried about those pesky "arguments about censorship and freedom of speech if I ban the track."

UGH. I hear ya, Coop. People are always whining about free speech when you start censoring them. It's like the rowdy, ignorant masses aren't even grateful for all the wonderful songs by Michael Buble and Pitbull that you benevolently allow them to hear unedited.

In short, the attempt to slam Thatcher in death has turned into a fitting tribute to her legacy and worldview.