Mocking short people is as bad as racism and homophobia, says Commons Speaker John Bercow (who happens to be 5ft 6)
- Bercow said jokes about his height had 'never bothered' him personally
- But he questioned why is was okay to ridicule someone's height
- Speaker said racism was wrong but heightism 'somehow acceptable'
- Comes after Tory MP called him 'stupid, sanctimonious dwarf' in Commons
Tom Mctague, Mail Online Deputy Political Editor
Mocking short people is as bad as racism, the Commons' Speaker John Bercow has suggested.
Bercow, who stands just 5ft 6in tall, said it was 'somehow acceptable'
to criticise people over their height when attacking someone for their
skin colour or sexuality was widely accepted as being wrong.
Speaker has been widely ridiculed in the Commons over his height - with
both Tory backbenchers and even the Prime Minister poking fun at his
Commons Speaker John Bercow -
pictured with his wife Sally - has criticised the public acceptance of
mocking short people. But he said he was 'never bothered' by people
ridiculing his height
2010 the Conservatve MP Simon Burns referred to the Speaker as as a
'stupid, sanctimonious dwarf'. He later apologised to all dwarves for
David Cameron also joked that Mr Bercow was one of the seven dwarfs at a lunch with journalists in Westminster.
Bercow, who is only three inches shorter than the UK 5ft 9in average
height in Britain, has attacked society’s acceptance of derogatory
remarks relating to people’s height.
to The Times Magazine, Mr Bercow said: ‘Whereas nobody these days would
regard it as acceptable to criticise someone on grounds of race or
creed or disability or sexual orientation, somehow it seems to be
acceptable to comment on someone’s height, or lack of it.’
Sally Bercow, who caused controversy
after posing in just a bed sheet in front of Parliament, said her
husband's job had made him more sexy
Bercow claimed the issue doesn’t affect him personally, however he
described rude comments about height ‘intellectually substandard and
schoolboyish’. Mr Bercow, 51, said he was 'never bothered about being
the same interview, Mr Bercow rejected claims from his wife Sally - who
stands at 5ft 10in - that his powerful Commons' had made him more
He said: 'I have most certainly not become a sex symbol. She [his wife] does have a very good sense of humour.'
In 2011 Mrs Bercow sent ripples around Westminster when she appeared in a newspaper wearing nothing but a bedsheet.
She also spoke at the time of the 'aphrodisiac' effect of their life at the Palace of Westminster.
Mr Bercow said the couple are not fazed by scrutiny of their marriage, which has made headlines on a number of occasions.
'Sally and I have our own approach to marriage and we are perfectly comfortable in our own skin,' he said.
in the politest possible way, I think I would say: if other people
disapprove of it or think it should be otherwise, that’s their problem,