Justice is one of the cardinal virtues which we are enjoined to practise: and surely the highly paid men at the BBC have acted in a spirit of justice by agreeing to take a pay cut to their salaries, with the aspiration of just and equal pay for women.
These virtuous men include Huw Edwards (salary: £600,000), John Humphrys (up to £650,000), Jeremy Vine (up to £750,000), Nicky Campbell (£450,000) and Nick Robinson (£300,000). James Naughtie, Jon Sopel, Eddie Mair and Andrew Marr were also in line to take a wage cut.
Bravo. Doing the decent thing should always be applauded, and these chaps seem to have done so with good grace.
We understand that other fellows – including Gary Lineker (BBC income £1.5 million) and Chris Evans (£2.2 million) – will not be asked to volunteer a cut in their wages. These sports and entertainment stars are designated “untouchable”.
So here’s the dilemma about the question of fairness, equality and justice: who sets the rules?
If a corporation has an agreed scale of what is fair, equal and justice, then everyone adheres to this matrix. But once there is a “star system” of remuneration – whereby the star celebrities get paid more because they attract audiences – then it gets more difficult to say what is fair and just.
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