Page 2, 7th August 1953

7th August 1953
Page 2
Page 2, 7th August 1953 — THE B.B.C.

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From C. Brogan read Fr. Drinkwater's letter with bewilderment. Does he seriously ask us to believe that the B.B.C. would or could give Bishop Sheen the weekly opportunity he enjoys in U.S.A.? Does he ask us to believe that the proportion of Catholic broadcasts allowed by the B.B.C. is a just reflection of the proportion of Catholics among the church-attending part of the community?

Hilaire Belloc has just died and the entire Press was prompt to honour a man of immense gifts and unusual views. What use did the B.B.C. make of the services of one of the most brilliant and lucid speakers in the country? Very little. but they built up Mr. J. B. Priestley into a national and even an international figure.

Almost of necessity. a communications monopoly favours the orthodox. The men who run the B.B.C. may do their honest best to hold the balance fairly between Socialist and Tory, and give something to the Liberals to keep them happy. But these are all orthodoxies. I fear the B.B.C. has no stomach for allowing controversy that would be equally unpalatable to all three.

At the present time there is a considerable gap between British and American conceptions of a sound foreign policy. It is immensely important that the people of Britain should understand why this gap has come into being. The reason is that we have forgotten Yalta and the Americans have not. The B.B.C. would perform a high public service by having some speaker remind the public of what happened at that disastrous and inglorious conference and the immense treacheries that followed. But this would he embarrassing to most of the party leaders and somehow I cannot see the B.B.C. doing it.

If I remember rightly, Fr. Drinkwater's views of the Spanish Civil War were far from popular among the majority of Catholics, and he had some hard things to say about the Catholic Press. Nevertheless he was able to make his own minority views heard, precisely because he was not the prisoner of a monopoly. Colm Brogan. 17 Monkhams Avenue,

Woodford Green, Essex.

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