'There's nothing left to joke about in this woke world': Anti-Semitism 'is new rock and roll', Maureen Lipman fears

14 February 2024, 18:30

Dame Maureen blamed woke culture for a rise in anti-Semitic "comedy"
Dame Maureen blamed woke culture for a rise in anti-Semitic "comedy". Picture: Alamy/Social media
Connor Hand

By Connor Hand

Dame Maureen Lipman believes anti-Semitism is becoming the "new Rock & Roll" amid a surge in cases since October 7th.

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Speaking to LBC, the legendary actress also argued that the "woke world" has resulted in comedians fostering anti-Semitic sentiments during their gigs.

Her comments follow a recent case at Soho Theatre involving Paul Currie.

He allegedly "hounded out" an Israeli man who refused to stand up in support of Palestine. He reportedly told the man to: "Get out of my show. Get the f*** out of here. F*** off, get the f*** out of here."

Read more: 'It wasn't bullying': Protester defends protest at Tobias Ellwood's home as he says 'Hamas is not in question'

Responding to this, Dame Maureen suggested that sensitivities surrounding a range of subjects has led to a position where comics are targeting the Jewish community: "These people go to a comedy club [and] they can't do any jokes about gender, they can't do any jokes about being black or white, they can't do mother-in-law, they can't do the wife.

"There's absolutely nothing left in this woke world to make jokes about - and so therefore, they're driven to basically just stand up and say, 'stand up for Palestine. And if you don't, then eff off'."

Dame Maureen's comments come on the eve of the publication of an annual report into anti-Semitism by the Community Security Trust, one of the main organisations tackling this form of discrimination in the UK.

In the immediate aftermath of the October 7th attacks, the Metropolitan Police reported a 1,353% rise in anti-Semitic offences, and Dame Maureen feels this increase is possibly being fuelled by academics on university campuses.

"I think anti-Semitism is rapidly becoming the new rock and roll. I think that young people are disaffected in many ways.

"They're groomed on the campuses by progressive academics. They're groomed to believe that Israel is a rogue state, even though it is a legitimate state; they absolutely ignore the fact that there have been invasions into Israel since the very moment of its inception."

Read more: Third Labour politician 'spoken to' amid anti-Semitism row, as Starmer battles to control crisis ahead of by-elections

"What's happening on the campuses [is] kids having to hide [and] kids not being allowed into them. It's the drip, drip of what happened to us in Germany - and for the last 4000 years.

"Everyone in [Paul Currie's] audience should go and see the film the Zone of Interest and see what happened in the camps and how easy it is to be utterly disinterested."

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