United Kingdom: The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has fired one of their longtime employees for likening Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan Markel’s son to a monkey.
Danny Baker, a British broadcaster and comedy writer who hosted a weekend radio show on the BBC’s 5 Live channel, was fired by the network for a racist tweet depicting Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan’s newborn son, Archie, as a chimpanzee.
The tweet, which has since been deleted, showed a couple holding hands with a chimpanzee wearing clothes, captioned with the text, “Royal Baby leaves hospital,” per the BBC and the Independent. Duchess Meghan is biracial, and the post was swiftly criticized on social media.
“This was a serious error of judgment and goes against the values we as a station aim to embody,” the BBC said in a statement on their site and to the Independent. “Danny’s a brilliant broadcaster but will no longer be presenting a weekly show with us.” Baker initially apologized for his tweet, before changing course and criticizing the BBC for his firing. At first, he wrote, “Sorry my gag pic of the little fella in the posh outfit has whipped some up. Never occurred to me because, well, mind not diseased. Soon as those good enough to point out it’s possible connotations got in touch, down it came. And that’s it.”
He added later, “Was supposed to be joke about Royals vs circus animals in posh clothes but interpreted as about monkeys & race, so rightly deleted. Royal watching not my forte. Also, guessing it was my turn in the barrel.” Following Baker’s firing, he took a more adversarial tone on Twitter, with a profane message about his former employer. “The call to fire me from @bbc5live was a masterclass of pompous faux-gravity. Took a tone that said I actually meant that ridiculous tweet and the BBC must uphold blah blah blah. Literally threw me under the bus. Could hear the suits knees knocking.” The longtime radio host has had a history of controversy. He was previously being fired from the BBC in 1997 for encouraging football fans to harass a referee over the outcome of a game, and he resigned in 2012 after lashing out against his bosses when the network moved his show to the weekend. Both times, he eventually returned to the network. times afterwards.