RTE again Disgusting, Shocking Insult to Millions of Irish Catholics, RTE would not Insult the Muslim Faith, in Time Irish people will be second Class Citizens in their own Country. If somebody called Aengus Mac Grianna a Gay little man, would they be called Racist Homophobic? Time for the People of Ireland to Stand together and Protect their Faith and Culture, we still are a Majority

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‘Blasphemous & outrageous’ — Widespread fury after ‘God is a rapist’ RTE clip

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Blasphemous & outrageous’ — Widespread fury after ‘God is a rapist’ RTE clip

A comedy sketch broadcast by RTE on New Year’s Eve – which depicted God as a rapist – has sparked a furious backlash.a man wearing a suit and tie© Provided by Extra.ie

Leading a chorus of criticism against the national broadcaster over the clip yesterday was Archbishop Eamon Martin, head of the Church here.

He complained that the skit was ‘deeply offensive’, ‘blasphemous’ and ‘outrageous’.a man wearing a suit and tie smiling at the camera: The Most Reverend Eamon Martin, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, said the ‘outrageous clip should be removed immediately [by RTÉ] and denounced’. Photo: Sam Boal/Rollingnews.ie© Provided by Extra.ie The Most Reverend Eamon Martin, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, said the ‘outrageous clip should be removed immediately [by RTÉ] and denounced’. Photo: Sam Boal/Rollingnews.ie

Several viewers immediately expressed offence when the segment aired, and Minister Josepha Madigan declared her distaste yesterday that such a sensitive topic as rape would be made light of in such a ‘flippant’ way.

Ms Madigan, Junior Minister for Special Education and Inclusion, told the Irish Daily Mail: ‘Satire is an important part of free speech, but I am very concerned about flippant jokes being made about a topic as serious as rape.

This clip was not appropriate and has clearly caused offence and upset to many people.’a person with pink hair taking a selfie: Josepha Madigan declared her distaste yesterday that such a sensitive topic as rape would be made light of in such a ‘flippant’ way. Pic: Leah Farrell / RollingNews.ie© Provided by Extra.ie Josepha Madigan declared her distaste yesterday that such a sensitive topic as rape would be made light of in such a ‘flippant’ way. Pic: Leah Farrell / RollingNews.ie

The Most Reverend Eamon Martin, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, said the ‘outrageous clip should be removed immediately [by RTE] and denounced’.

He tagged RTE and its director-general, Dee Forbes, in two condemnatory tweets yesterday.

The controversial broadcast by RTE One formed part of its New Year’s Eve Countdown Show.

Former RTE newsreader Aengus Mac Grianna read the fake news segment for the skit by satirical website Waterford Whispers.Dee Forbes standing in front of a laptop: He tagged RTÉ and its director-general Dee Forbes in two condemnatory tweets yesterday. Pic: RTE© Provided by Extra.ie He tagged RTÉ and its director-general Dee Forbes in two condemnatory tweets yesterday. Pic: RTE

He said: ‘In a shocking revelation this year, God became the latest figure to be implicated in ongoing sexual harassment scandals.

The 5-billion-year-old stood accused of forcing himself on a young Middle Eastern migrant and allegedly impregnating her against her will.’

This was believed to be alluding to the Immaculate Conception.

Accompanied by images of an elderly man in white robes and with a flowing white beard being arrested by a garda, the report added that God had been sentenced to two years in prison, with the final 24 months suspended.a man and a woman looking at the camera: The controversial broadcast by RTÉ One formed part of its New Year’s Eve Countdown Show.© Provided by Extra.ie The controversial broadcast by RTÉ One formed part of its New Year’s Eve Countdown Show.

The programme prompted a slew of complaints on Twitter, with the Archbishop’s message shared more than 350 times.

He wrote: ‘I am shocked that [the] producer/editor of NYE Countdown Show didn’t realise how deeply offensive was a mocking “news report” accusing God of rape and reporting his imprisonment. This outrageous clip should be removed immediately & denounced by all people of goodwill.’

He added: ‘To broadcast such a deeply offensive and blasphemous clip about God & Our Blessed Mother Mary during the Christmas season on RTÉ One and on the Eve of the Solemn Feast of Mary, Mother of God is insulting to all Catholics and Christians.’

One of more than 100 people to respond was Cllr Michael Sheehan, of Wexford County Council, who said: ‘Complaint in already. If it was a person of colour, a refugee, Islamic faith or a Traveller, would it have been done? And the uproar? Have to say, it’s crossed the line.’Aengus Mac Grianna wearing a suit and tie: Aengus Mac Grianna at the 2014 Punchestown racing festival at the Curragh Racecourse, Co Kildare. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins© Provided by Extra.ie Aengus Mac Grianna at the 2014 Punchestown racing festival at the Curragh Racecourse, Co Kildare. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

He told the Mail: ‘I have to say, it exercised a lot of people, who were offended by it, and who thought it was crass and very bad judgment.

‘I very rarely get people getting in touch regarding offensive broadcasts, but I got half a dozen calls and more messages from people saying how upset they were.

‘I think they took a very serious topic and belittled it, and they essentially trashed a community of faith.

I know it was tongue-in-cheek, but it was inappropriate and the wrong tone. How they could see that being part of a New Year’s Eve programme, I don’t get that at all.’a man wearing a suit and tie: The programme prompted a slew of complaints on Twitter, with the Archbishop’s message shared more than 200 times. Pic: RTÉ© Provided by Extra.ie The programme prompted a slew of complaints on Twitter, with the Archbishop’s message shared more than 200 times. Pic: RTÉ

Also hitting out, businessman Declan Ganley said: ‘I’m not going to demand an RTÉ apology. Even if they made one, they wouldn’t be sorry.’

The Catholic Arena website complained that RTÉ had ‘crossed a line’ with the sketch. It said: ‘Under new hate crime legislation, Mac Grianna and RTÉ can be prosecuted. We encourage everyone to take the following actions: Call Donnybrook Garda Station and report the hate crime, which violates the new Harmful Communications Bill.’

A Garda spokesman said last night the force had no record of any investigations on its systems regarding the matter. He added that typically complaints of this nature were investigated by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, which is the statutory body with responsibility in this area.

The Archbishop’s complaint about the sketch was put to RTE last night. A spokeswoman said the broadcaster did not wish to comment in response. RTE earlier told the Mail that its complaints office is not open until Monday.

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