Saturday 23 March 2013

The right-wing journalist, dubbed by some ‘The Jeremy Clarkson who doesn’t talk as much about cars”, Richard Littlejohn is the target of a large(r) amount of vitriol currently because of the death of someone he criticised in his column for The Daily Mail.

There is no reason at all to establish any reason for mounting a defence of Littlejohn. Because I won’t be doing this – I dislike him immensely and the article he wrote has no sentiment that I could agree with.

What I am saying is that a lot of the people with the burning torches calling for the public execution of Littlejohn don’t know much (and I don’t mean that in a generic you-know-nothing way, I mean about what has happened here): other than Littlejohn wrote an article where he was adamant that a teacher shouldn’t have gender reassignment because of the traumatic affect it would have on the children at the school.

I have two points on this:

  1. How is this Littlejohn getting ALL the flack? He deserves people judging him if he wants to put it in the public domain that he feels like this. But The Daily Mail has editorial control over the articles it publishes, whether it be online or in the paper. I am  almost certain that the newspaper didn’t have to publish the offending article. Therefore TDM sacking Littlejohn seems to excuse the paper itself of its role – what at this point remains the only certaint bad thing (the article itself) – in the publication of this piece of writing. I think maybe the thing is here that I’m reading about this issue in the press and, yet again, there seems to be evidence that there were multiple journalists making Ms Meadow’s life unpleasant in the last few months. It is far better if the blame is one person, Littlejohn, and not general tabloid behaviour by numerous parties.
  2. Perhaps something as grand as the current movement should have been done at the time. I am neither saying nothing was done when the piece was published nor that people cannot express an opinion now. I am simply suggesting that you can’t just wait until someone dies and then go mental about something without having all the facts. Well, clearly you can do this – a freedom the British public regularly take their right to do so.

Also – and believe me this was nearly a third numbered point, so very nearly – though people are rightly outraged that such press (and the harassment Lucy Meadows was suffering was clearly not just Littlejohn’s none-acceptance but a sustained intrusion by multiple ‘journalists’)  intrusion has been made into someone’s life and had some serious consequences, even if we don’t make the presumption that it had the ultimate cost, for someone who wanted to be more comfortable and carry on doing a job they loved there are some people who are outraged and signing surveys who definitely would prefer it if the people who taught their children didn’t have gender reassignment.

Not that people being a little bit hypocritical should stop a greater good happening. I’m just not altogether certain that sacking Richard Littlejohn is a greater good. A greater good would  be a campaign to stop people buying The Daily Mail and going on the website. I am guilty as many of gently relaxing my views on the website at least. While always hating the paper and its ideology it was OK that I went on the website to look at pictures of famous people wasn’t it? It was OK that I mocked the articles on the website in my blog wasn’t it? Well every click on the website gives them more advertising revenue. It is the most successful British newspaper website.

The only way to make a statement is to stop going on the website. Yes, you’re going to have to find another website for reading salacious content on celebrities (and people who were famous a couple of years ago) in order to make people listen. TDM will just replace Littlejohn with like – if indeed they do sack him. He is just a(n unfortunately loud) symptom of the larger disease of ‘being fucking horrible’ that TDM is riddled with.

So, do sign your petition against Littlejohn but do something more long-lasting and stop going on The Daily Mail website: you can definitely find whatever story  they have somewhere else because they just re-use content from other sites anyway.


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