The Pogues tell Laurence Fox to ‘f**k off’ while backing BBC censorship of homophobic slur from Fairytale of New York

Josh Milton
·2-min read

The Pogues had a simple message for Laurence Fox after he complained about BBC bosses removing a homophobic slur from “Fairytale of New York”: “F**k off.”

In what can only be described as a true Christmas miracle, the band, whose infamous song is annually dragged into the crosshairs for its use of the word “faggot” in a lyric, waded into Fox’s mentions to, putting it frankly, destroy him while backing the move to edit out the word.

Fox, an actor who has restyled himself as a right-wing commentator to become relevant again, took to Twitter to blast the BBC for its move to play an “alternative” version of the song on BBC Radio 1 so as to not offend younger listeners.

Here we go again,” Fox wrote. “The cultural commissars at the BBC are telling you what is and isn’t appropriate for your ignorant little ears.

“Wouldn’t it be nice if we sent the (proper) version to the top of the charts? #DefundTheBBC. RT.”

“F**k off you little herrenvolk s***e”, The Pogues, who along with Kirsty MacColl actually sang “Fairytale of New York”, gracefully hit back.

“Herrenvolk” is a concept in Nazi ideology referring to the “master race” – a not-so-subtle dig at Fox’s new role as a poster boy for the populist right.

And unlike Fox’s tweet, even with his plea to be retweeted, people actually retweeted The Pogues. Quickly tallying more than 3,300 retweets and 800 quote tweets in less than an hour – Fox netted just 500 retweets at the time of writing.

That is, if you can’t tell, significantly more people who care about what the actual band has to say on the matter than Fox.

Should ‘Fairytale of New York’ be bleeped? Yes, say The Pogues, and it’s not a big deal to do so.

“Fairytale of New York” is a staple of the holidays for many reasons. It’s the anti-Christmas song blasted from speaker systems in pubs and shopping malls. It’s also the song that rankles many an LGBT+ person for its use of the word “faggot”.

Following the announcement that BBC Radio 1 will censor the song, which came alongside news that the British government is scrapping vital funding to anti-LGBT+ bulling schemes in schools, The Pogues made their stance on the debate perfectly clear.