A British radio DJ has gotten himself into trouble after making a joke that has been described as “disgusting” regarding flights to Turkey. This comes in the wake of earthquakes that have killed more than 41,000 people there.
On Monday, while hosting his Capital FM Drivetime show, Ant Payne mentioned that right now is the ideal time to begin searching for low-cost tickets to Turkey.
He continued to make jokes about the natural calamity by making a reference to “Love Island,” which is a popular reality dating program in the United Kingdom.
Payne also mentioned now would be an excellent opportunity to get dental work done while the traveler is in that area.
He joked that getting dental work done could make you look like you’re 19 years old. If you accomplish that, then you will be featured on the following season of “Love Island.”
British Radio Host Ant Payne Capital FM Radio makes horrible joke about Turkish Earthquake. Sack him. @CapitalOfficial pic.twitter.com/EfMl1xN0cD
— max (@MaxCamFB) February 13, 2023
According to The Independent, the remark was met with around 600 complaints from listeners to Ofcom, many of whom referred to it as “disgusting” and “disgraceful.” Others on social media also voiced their support for the termination of his employment.
Suzanne Nuri-Nixon, a councilor for the Liberal Democrats, commented on the situation and stated he “misread the room.”
Apology and Severity of the Earthquakes
Payne took to Twitter on Tuesday to issue an apology for the joke, saying it had been “insensitive” and “poorly timed.”
In his letter, Payne stated he wanted to respond to the statement he made earlier that evening on the show. He then admitted he recognized his words were rude and inappropriate, given all the real life horrors happening in Turkey right now.
He continued by saying he never intentionally wanted to upset anyone with his concerts. Following that, he apologized in the most sincere and heartfelt way he could muster.
Hi guys, I want to address the comment I made last night on the show. It was insensitive and ill timed. I would never wish to offend anyone from my shows. My sincere and wholehearted apologies.
— Ant Payne (@ant_man_go) February 14, 2023
As reported by the Associated Press, the earthquakes that struck southeastern Turkey and northern Syria last week with magnitudes of 7.8 and 7.6, respectively, caused the deadliest natural disaster in modern Turkish history.
As a result, Turkey is now facing water shortages and the risk of disease outbreaks. According to recent statements made by the head of emergency relief for the United Nations, Martin Griffiths, the number of fatalities is projected to exceed 56,000 people.
As Griffiths reportedly said on Sky News, he believes it is difficult to quantify it precisely since they need to go beneath the rubble first, but he was confident it would double or even more than that.
It is horrifying. This is nature’s method of getting even with humans rather brutally.
Back to the DJ and his disgusting comment. Are you of the opinion that the DJ should face consequences for his insensitive speech or do you think his apology is enough?