BBC Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson sparked a new controversy by suggesting that long queues at airport control could be solved by “a bit of racism”.
Jeremy Clarkson said that delays were caused because immigration officials could no longer use their discretion to wave certain passengers through.
“Nobody is waved through any more. Immigration officials are not allowed to use their discretion,” Jeremy Clarkson said.
“Common sense has been erased from the system. And the result is plain for all to see. There’s a two-hour wait. And come the Olympics they’re saying that time frame will double.
“Net result: Immigration officials have to assume that the nice family of four coming back from their holiday in Sardinia is going to cheat the social out of millions then blow up during the 100 metres final.”
Jeremy Clarkson then went on to say there is a possible solution to the problem.
“Nobody likes a racist. Nobody likes prejudice. It has no place at work, at play or on the terraces of a football stadium. It has no place at school, or in government.
“But at Heathrow airport? Hmmm.”
However, a spokesman for the Public and Commercial Services Union, which represents Border Force workers, said: “Clarkson is an idiot.”
Meanwhile, some Twitter users took to the social networking site to express their views.
Some said they agreed with his views. A woman known only as Alice said: “Jeremy clarkson (sic) has summed up what will go wrong this summer. GO JEREMY! He is brilliant.”
Jeremy Clarkson used his weekly column in The Sun to highlight the problem of long waits for those coming through border control at Heathrow airport.
He said that since security checks were tightened by Home Secretary Theresa May, officials have been prevented from only targeting those deemed “high risk”.
Jeremy Clarkson, who is no stranger to controversy and has become known for his provocative comments, hit the headlines in December after he suggested that striking public sector workers should be shot in front of their families.
The gaffe came when he appeared on the BBC’s The One Show during Britain’s biggest public sector strike for the past 30 years.
The BBC was also forced to apologize about an item on BBC2’s Top Gear which led to the Mexican ambassador complaining about the “outrageous, vulgar and inexcusable insults” made about Mexicans by Jeremy Clarkson and his co-hosts James May and Richard Hammond.
In February 2009, Jeremy Clarkson famously insulted then-prime minister Gordon Brown by calling him a “one-eyed Scottish idiot” – a reference to the fact he is blind in one eye.
The previous year the BBC also received nearly 2,000 complaints when Jeremy Clarkson joked about lorry drivers murdering prostitutes.