Wednesday 02 October 2013

Our fair country is still recoiling in horror from the news that the hallowed pages of its most noble newspapers has been tarred with words that appear to be nothing more than vitriol with no bearing on public consciousness or current affairs.

Yes, the nation seems to have temporarily woken up to The Daily Mail being a publication that doesn’t necessarily belong on the list of things that aren’t awful. Despite years of being both passively and actively vile, The Daily Mail has survived with a strong core following of (what are almost certainly) right-wingers who refuse to accept that Conservative values of the 1950s don’t have a place in the modern world. And why would you when you live in places where only white people are allowed (unless they are cleaning).

Hating women, being racist, hating the working classes, thinking everything causes cancer.  The list could go on. Not for long because they mainly just repeat a diet of those elements and sport in order to reassure bizarre people that they are right.  Of course now because they bully women in bikinis or sexualise children on their online showbiz pages most people contribute to its website being one of the most successful newspaper websites in the world.

You might not be reading their right-leaning news coverage or agreeing with their female columnist saying women are idiots (hey, a woman said it so it can’t be sexist). But when you look at pictures of Demi Moore looking old or Siri Cruise looking ‘very mature’ on her first day of nursery the traffic you create gives the website the evidence for generating income from advertising.

So, if you clicked on the story about Glip from Surrounded by Essex getting engaged to Kleench from The Only Direction is towards Clapham on the website you helped TDM pay for the story that ‘proved’ Ed Milliband’s father was ‘probably worse than Hitler’ because he was a socialist.

My predictable reference to Hitler is worth a mention. Lots of people thought it worth mentioning that the once proprietor of TDM, Viscount Rothermere, was a supporter of Hitler’s rise. It’s fair, I suppose, to point out that if a newspaper is going to go digging in a politician’s genetic dustbin that people are liable to point out their own dirty washing (quite a lot of metaphor here).

But two wrongs don’t make a right. Whether the views of Milliband Snr were accurately reflected is one thing. I’m afraid publishing your words means people are open to use editorial opinion to question their meaning. Are they relevant? Are they disrespectful? (Yes, Yes). Apart from anything else TDM finding you distasteful surely suggests you are on the right lines.

But pointing out the man who owned the paper 80 years ago doesn’t prove anything. My point is that don’t ignore everything in between the Hitler stuff and the having a go at Milliband Snr. There’s lots of things for which the current owners and editors are responsible that leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

I shouldn’t complain, anything that gets people protesting the paper has to be a good thing.

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