The opening ceremony of International games are a chance to put your best frock on and show the world your defining features – the Weegies are too tough for frocks, they donned thick wool skirts and skitted round Celtic Park dressed as Tunnock Tea cakes. God knows what we would have got if they’d all been pansies.
John Barrowman emerged from under a kilt to kiss the manly ‘bride’ and show the 42 commonwealth countries where homosexuality is illegal exactly what they were part and parcel of as they dodged the massed Terriers in the wake of the Loch Ness monster. The Forth Bridge was supported on a tower of Irn-Bru cans. Glasgow Pride!
Sky helpfully told us that ‘the Queen would be dropping in’ but ‘no parachutes this time’ – the anti-monarchists cheered at the thought. Madge is getting a little hefty in her dotage; liable to make quite an impression in the sacred turf.
Primary School pupils could join in the fun and gain points for ‘identifying the cultural dance of Scotland’ and Scotland’s ‘heritage and aspirations’ – I suppose growing up thinking that kissing cup cakes and mythical monsters are what your country stands for is better than taking up Jihad.
From somewhere they found 3,000 volunteers still able to get off the sofa and dance enthusiastically to show that not all of Scotland had embraced the deep-fried Mars bar culture. It took six months to find them though.
Harriet Harman emerged on cue in London to demand that those who run around on the sofa brigade’s behalf – the horses and the Premiership footballers – hand over more of their ill-gotten gains to fund spaces for the nation’s army of fat kids to run around in. We used to call them ‘school playing fields’. Now we have ‘specialist sports academies’ for those who have magically managed to acquire an interest in sport without the benefit of a school playing field. Predictably, Harriet wants ‘more women on the boards of sporting organisations’ and ‘increased targets for women participating in sports’ – I had no idea there were such targets to be ‘increased’.
The Conservative government is said to have sold off 10,000 school playing fields – in its 1997 General Election manifesto, Labour pledged to bring the then Tory government’s ‘policy of forcing schools to sell off playing fields to an end’ – though the BBC presenter Tim Harford says until five years ago, the estimate was that 5,000 playing fields had been sold in that time, and that included the land belonging to 3,000 schools that had been closed anyway.
Labour promptly sold off another 200 playing fields and 1,000 smaller pieces of surplus school land to eager developers. As usual they are as bad as each other. Labour may be taking the government to task now for failing to ‘capitalise on the 2012 Olympic expectations’ of healthy kids – but you just know that if they got a chance to cover the playing fields of Eton with concrete, preferably with its currently most famous ex-pupils still wheezing in the middle of the field, they would be personally stoking the cement mixers.
The 1976 Adoption Act allowed adoptees to trace their natural parents. Adoption was originally all about protecting middle class adopters from the fearful prospect of the working class girl turning up on their doorstep and demanding the return of her baby – over time, the focus became protecting the child.
In the 60s and 70s there was much emotive conversation of the subject of the right of the child to know his/her natural parents – we were told of genetic illnesses that the child had the ‘right’ to know about. Those with a family history of Glaucoma, for instance, are entitled to free testing from age 40.
‘Children can frequently feel a deep sense of loss if they don’t know about their genetic parents, despite having very loving social parents.’
These arguments are perfectly valid – but surely they should apply to all children, and not merely those born of specific circumstances?
How about DNA testing of all children and their birth Mothers? I do realise what a problem this may be for the 5% of Mothers who give birth to children who are not the child of the man named on the birth certificate – a figure which could be as high as 20 – 30% if anyone ever has the courage to release the ‘Liverpool Flats’ survey which allegedly attributes that figure to the number of children born in a set of Liverpool flats who turned out to be nothing to do with the man named on the birth certificate. (It would be Liverpool, wouldn’t it?)
What is a little local embarrassment for the women compared to the mental and physical health of the children? Think of the childreeeeen!
Best not to have a murder in the family right now. It may feel like the worst thing that could happen to someone you know and love, the most heinous crime imaginable, but Scotland Yard has other priorities these days.
Murder squad officers are being drafted into Scotland Yard’s overstretched child abuse investigation teams to cope with a huge increase in cases.
The Met boosted the size of its sex offences and child abuse unit after the Baby P case to almost 1,200 officers and staff. But the numbers budgeted for had not been realised with a high level of absence with 50 officers on maternity leave and another 150 being diverted to other investigations, including Operation Yewtree which examined Savile and other celebrities.
The Met – which still has 130 officers and staff investigating journalists and phone hacking – has permanently transferred 50 detectives from homicide investigation into the sex offences unit. However, there was still a shortfall with 50 posts unfilled.
A spokesman for the Met said: “This is a crucial time to ensure we are doing all we can to protect the most vulnerable group in our society.”
Priorities Petunia! Those who think they may have seen Jimmy Savile walking across the car park of the Maudsley Hospital 40 years ago have superseded the frail widow tottering home with her pension, the elderly beaten up in care homes, the traumatised ex-servicemen sleeping in our streets – as the most ‘vulnerable group in our society’.
In America, only in America, the ‘sex-abuse police‘ threatened to cart a 17 year old lad off to the local hospital where he was to be given an injection to ensure he had an erection, where they took photographs of said erection. This is NOT sex abuse.
They needed the pictures to prove that when he had ‘sexted’ a picture of his penis to his girlfriend, that it really was his penis…..the ‘sexting’ apparently WAS sex abuse – since the picture was still on his mobile phone, it apparently comprises ‘possession of child pornography’ (he is still a ‘child’) and carries a four month jail sentence and a lifetime on the sex offenders list.
Modern courtship eh?
I don’t think I shall bother reading the rest of the papers.