‘So next time call him a fat bastard and don’t say anything about his colour.’
– Judge Paul Darlow
On the face of it, those who say the rows in this year’s Celebrity Big Brother are not racist need look no further than Jo O’Meara, who refused to eat food Shilpa had touched and suggested Indians are skinny because they get sick through eating undercooked food. I remember an uncle of mine once saying he wasn’t racist but wouldn’t eat food, ‘they have touched… but that’s just me’.
I’m sure uncle was in earnest and that Jade is too when she tells Big Brother she’s not racist. But as the Sun points out, she is a dimwit, as are her allies. (Although Jo’s fallen fairly quiet, perhaps realising Jade’s going too far and hoping her most extreme remarks haven’t been highlighted.)
Jade isn’t someone who consciously looks for Asian people to bully… she needs someone to bully full stop. It’s down to a deeply engrained herd instinct that attempts to force conformity on the group. Shilpa is not only very different from Jade, as a young woman she’s easily intimidated physically. Most of us are able to overcome this base instinct, but Jade has never learnt to control it. If someone like Judge Paul Darlow had been in the house, perhaps she would have called Shilpa the ‘skinny bird’. Her followers would have warmed to that theme instead. Then they could have made up stories that she was making herself sick in the toilets, say, or had fun force feeding her (for her own good, of course).
It’s reasonable to assume that most Big Brother contestants are obsessed with thoughts of how the outside world sees them and that this is why they can’t help discussing nominations, despite the punishment that brings. And that being the case, Big Brother taking you to one side to ask what you meant by ‘Shilpa Poppadom’ (which doesn’t even rhyme with Shilpa Shetty) would be a big hint as to how things are going down, especially when fellow dimwit, Danielle, has been asked to explain to Big Brother what she meant by: ‘She should [go] home. She can’t even speak English.’
No doubt Jade will be genuinely surprised to find that instead of a half-cheering, half-jeering crowd to meet her upon eviction, she’s getting a police escort to a safe house. And nobody wants to smell like her anymore.