Rosie Jones received ableist abuse after appearing on Question Time. (BBC)
Comedian Rosie Jones has been subjected to a barrage of ableist abuse following her appearance on Question Time on Thursday (7 October).
Jones, who has cerebral palsy, was hailed as “by far the most articulate” on the show’s panel, which also included education secretary Nadhim Zahawi, shadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy, radio presenter Nick Ferrari and National Farmers Union president Minette Batters.
During the broadcast, which was filmed in Aldershot, Hampshire, Jones discussed Boris Johnson’s “scary” speech at the Conservative Party Conference, comparing him to Donald Trump and saying he “was able to excite everyone with his slogans, but when you listen to what he said, he said nothing”.
She also spoke on her experience as a disabled woman in the UK as part of a discussion on the country’s endemic culture of misogyny and violence against women.
“Taking about women’s safety in general right now there’s a government inquiry and a Met inquiry and I really feel like they are both PR stunts,” she said.
“I really don’t feel as a woman that either care about my safety… When we’ve got a government where Dominic Raab doesn’t know what misogyny is, that is scary.
“As a woman, but also as a disabled woman, I don’t feel safe at night, I don’t feel safe with police officers… Any minority, if you’re a woman, if you’re disabled, if you’re on the LGBT+ spectrum, if you’re a person of colour, the fact is right now in the UK, they don’t feel safe. That is a scary place to live in.”
As a gay, disabled woman living in the UK, I don’t feel safe. When will the government and the police support us? https://t.co/m1CruxDgcU
— Rosie Jones (@josierones) October 8, 2021
Rosie Jones says that as a disabled woman she doesn’t feel safe in the UK. It’s a scary place to live in. That’s very powerful to hear. #bbcqt
— Daniela Nadj (@DanielaNadj) October 7, 2021
Despite her brilliant contribution to the discussions, bigots took to social media to respond to her appearance on Question Time with pure ableist hate.
Rosie Jones responded to the abuse, and said she was sadly unsurprised, but would never stop speaking up.
She tweeted: “The sad thing is that I’m not surprised at the ableist abuse I’ve received tonight regarding my appearance on Question Time.
“It’s indicative of the country we live in right now.
“I will keep on speaking up, in my wonderful voice, for what I believe in.”
Viewers applauded Jones for both her appearance and for speaking out against the hate she received.
rosie jones has cerebral palsy. she’s a stand up comic and the audiences for which she performs have no difficulty understanding her.
— Sloane (@SloaneFragment) October 7, 2021
Rosie Jones was by far the most articulate panellist on #bbcqt tonight and all the gobshites on here taking the piss out of her need to have serious words with themselves.
— ilona burton (@ilonacatherine) October 7, 2021
It’s hard to express how pathetic you must be to mock a disabled person daring to be in public. That’s why representation is so important – so disabled people are your boss, your TV host, your MP, your mysterious sexy crush. Love to Rosie who we will PROTECT AT ALL COSTS. https://t.co/mvxFWRcBkj
— Frances Ryan (@DrFrancesRyan) October 8, 2021
As one Twitter user pointed out: “People literally pay money to hear Rosie Jones speak, it’s her f**king job.
“If you can’t understand her, that feels like a you problem.
“Try actually listening instead of being an abelist d**khead on the internet.”
People literally pay money to hear Rosie Jones speak, it’s her fucking job.
If you can’t understand her, that feels like a you problem. Try actually listening instead of being an abelist dickhead on the Internet.#bbcqt
— Chelsea 🤷♀️ (@chelseao_connor) October 7, 2021
Another wrote: “Rosie Jones on BBC’s Question Time slammed the Tories for their behaviour and quite rightly too.
“I unfortunately saw people tweeting they couldn’t understand her!
“I’m going deaf, yet I could understand her easily, there’s still too much ableism in the UK, it needs to stop.”
PinkNews has approached Rosie Jones for comment.