I hope this Tam Cowan "controversy" passes at BBC Scotland, that his apology for being disparaging about women's football is accepted, and life can move on.

I have my doubts, though. The Beeb, it seems to me, are stalling a bit, and hanging Tam out to dry. That's two weeks now he has been off-air for his "crime".

I use inverted commas for "crime" because, in my book, he committed no such thing. And I write this as someone who values political correctness, who has been teased regularly for being PC, and who is very glad we have all moved on from the Alf Garnett age of years past.

Tam Cowan is no Alf Garnett figure. Nor, in his comedy and humour, is there even a hint of Bernard Manning. But what his output always has had is a hint of Benny Hill slapstick, a love of "sending up" and gentle piss-taking.

Yet it is these two latter qualities which have now landed the Daily Record columnist in trouble.

Tam, in his usual wise-cracking way, took the mince out of women's football in his column. Strangely enough, his newspaper has been able to live with all the fuss, but not BBC Scotland, Cowan's other port of call, which has taken grave offence and suspended him.

I have to admit, I'm surprised at the Beeb in Glasgow. I work there myself and love its range of people, ideas, subject-matter and torch-shining on Scotland. This fuss, though, has taken me aback.

Let's go through Cowan's column again, point by point, gag by gag, in order to defend what he wrote. Because defend it I do. His column, in trashing women's football, was all of wickedly funny, a bit off-colour, a bit daft, and definitely aimed at "the PC brigade", of which I am one.

Plainly, Tam finds women's football utter rubbish. Well, there's no harm in that, is there? I happen to disagree with him but, in calling the women's game "turgid", "dross" and "guff" he was only repeating what I've heard many men and women say.

He also stated that Fir Park, home of his beloved Motherwell, should be "torched" for hosting such "guff" as the women's international between Scotland and Bosnia last week.

I hope this gag doesn't need defending. Clearly, Tam intends no-one to take a flame-thrower to Fir Park.

Then we come to this delicate bit. "I've not seen a lot of women's football - just a few snatches," wrote Tam, chortling in his study as he wrote those very words.

This is a touch of laddish lunacy. Anyone over the age of 50 wouldn't even get this joke - I nearly didn't myself. It's not the sort of language I would use, but it is part of that blokey humour that surrounds so much of Scottish football.

My wife actually laughed at that bit. "Daft stuff," she sniffed. For the life of me I cannot view this line as a serious offence.

Arguably, the "offensive" part of Cowan's column was his gag about meeting two women footballers recently, and describing them as "two of the nicest blokes I've ever met"

This will cause offence to some, although many a sportswoman would just laugh it off as idiocy. The joke plays to a crude stereotype, but I have to ask, is this really a sacking offence?

If it is then, my goodness, we live in an age of idiomatic tyranny.

For me, the most important point of all here is context. Context is everything in terms of Cowan's ongoing right to play his humour as it is.

BBC Scotland, like the Daily Record, have bought into Cowan's style for years: his bawdy Lanarkshire humour, his edginess, his sometimes old-fashioned, behind-the-times daftness. All of these, plus his acute mind, have made him extremely popular.

Both the Record and the Beeb have enjoyed all this and encouraged it. In doing so, moreover, they have made Tam a major hit in our media. Suddenly, though, here he is deemed to have over-stepped the mark by inches, and his career is in jeopardy.

I genuinely cannot believe it.

Humour, of course, is subjective. I'm a fan of Cowan, just as there are many out there who find him unfunny and old hat. Me, I'm a part of that very sizeable minority who enjoy him and laugh with him. Cowan has one of the sharpest minds on BBC Scotland.

What I cannot get is Tam being regularly praised for his wacky BBC output - "Off The Ball" has a massive following - but then suddenly being upbraided for this very vein of humour.

The worst of it is, there is not a prejudiced bone in Cowan's pudgy, rotund body. Ask anyone who knows him. He regards anyone who is either a racist or a bigot as "a nutjob".

He openly laughed, like many people, at the growing pains of women's football. Come on, get over it.

Click here to read Catriona Stewart's column, Tam Cowan's cheap shot was beyond a joke.