Diversity troupe leader Ashley Banjo has said the controversy surrounding the group’s recent performance on Britain’s Got Talent, which reflected on the events of 2020, is indicative of a deeper issue in British society.
In the first semi-final show of this year’s BGT, Diversity returned to the stage to put on a powerful performance looking back at key moments in the year, including scenes alluding to the coronavirus pandemic, the killing of George Floyd and the ensuing global protests against police brutality.
While the routine won widespread praise at the time, it also led to more than 24,000 complaints being made to Ofcom, which the media regulator eventually dismissed.
Reflecting on the performance in a new interview with GQ Hype, Ashley admitted he was surprised at how much the Black Lives Matter-inspired section of the routine ended up being focussed on.
The ruling by Senior U.S. District Judge John D. Bates in Washington came in response to a lawsuit from the NAACP’s Legal Defense and Education Fund, which sought an injunction against the Presidential Commission on Law Enforcement and the Administration of Justice for violating laws on how federal advisory committees must work. Bates did not issue an injunction, but ordered the commission to change its membership and comply with other aspects of the law.
“Especially in 2020,” Bates wrote, “when racial justice and civil rights issues involving law enforcement have erupted across the nation, one may legitimately question whether it is sound policy to have a group with little diversity of experience examine, behind closed doors, the sensitive issues facing law enforcement and the criminal justice system in America today.”
The 18 member commission was composed entirely of state and federal law enforcement officials, with no one from the civil