It remains one of the biggest stains on this country that you are forced to pay an annual £159 to the biased BBC, says Dan Wootton

It’s infuriating that in a free society we are not free to boycott the BBC

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It remains one of the biggest stains on this country that you are forced to pay an annual £159 poll tax to the biased BBC.

That’s even if you never watch or listen to one piece of content from the British Bashing Corporation but choose to have a television set to tune into, for example, GB News.

But what remains an even bigger disgrace is that hardworking folk, including the elderly, have been sent to jail for non-payment of what the Beeb prefers us to refer to as the licence fee.

It’s infuriating that in a free society we are not free to boycott the BBC, unless we give up the right to consume any form of TV.

This week even French president Macron agreed to cut his country’s broadcasting tax.

It’s unbelievable that a Conservative government has allowed this anti-democratic madness to continue for so long, especially in a rapidly changing media environment moving towards streaming and subscription.

And especially when the BBC’s output has become everything that so many of us fight against – divisive, woke madness.

Like the way they tried to shame the Lionesses because they happened to be white.

But, let’s be honest, the BBC’s shameful agenda has been clear for years.

I’m hopeful today of change finally coming after the Tory leadership favourite said she will order a review into whether failing to pay for the BBC should still be a criminal offence.

Liz Truss has said she is concerned that 74 per cent of the 114,000 people convicted for non-payment in 2019 were women.

In an exclusive interview with The Mail+ she said: “What I’m very concerned about on the TV licence fee is how many women have ended up in prison for non-payment, a disproportionate number.

"I want to look at how we can make sure that we reform the TV licence fee, so we don’t end up with those punitive results. I’ll look at all the options... I do want to reform the way it works.”

As Culture Secretary, Truss supporter Nadine Dorries has been determined to axe the licence fee altogether, something she says the other Tory leadership contender Rishi Sunak “blocked for many months”.

A plan for a post-licence fee BBC from 2027, when it’s legally allowed to happen, must be part of the next Prime Minister’s plan.

But decriminalisation of the licence fee needs to happen immediately.

In Britain in 2022, we must be free to watch commercial television while refusing to pay for the destructive and unpatriotic BBC as a democratic right.