Damp squib or irresponsible journalism?

Now one of the things that does make my blood boil, is the protection of paedophiles.  After the revelations of what Jimmy Saville was up to I think now is the time to show the whole world that we as a nation are going to protect our children, and that we as a nation are not going to protect paedophiles.

Can you imagine the torment a child goes through at the hands of a paedophile?… It repulses me and to be perfectly honest I think people should be warned if there is a paedophile in their area.  But they can’t do that, cant they?.. Because of vigilante action.

Yesterday a tweet made by Iain Overton said that Newsnight was going to out a senior political figure as a paedophile.

Well that single tweet got re-tweeted 1,568 times and last night Twitter was abuzz with speculation of who was going to be outed.

Names of Politicians were being branded about and speculation was rife on Twitter as to who people thought it was and their reasoning why.

Newsnight, spoke to one of the the alleged victims and spoke of this person, and they even told us it was a Tory from the Thatcher years and there was a connection to Wales , but they did NOT name names.

If the BBC decided to play tit for tat over the criticism it has endured over the Saville allegations, then last night they used and abused a victim all over again, by using him in their war of tit for tat.

Even though the BBC stopped short of naming the person, did that stop tweeters on Twitter from speculating and basically in some tweets accusing people of being paedophile?

Now I admire for any broadcaster to out people, BUT only when they have enough evidence.  You see at the end of last nights Newsnight the programme stated that they could not name the person because there was ‘not enough evidence’

So to cut to the chase all they had was speculation, rumour, innuendo and assumption and NOT enough evidence.  Evidence that would be required by the Police in order for the Police to charge this person and evidence that is needed by the CPS  in order for them to prosecute this person and hopefully get a guilty verdict.

Channel 4’s Michael Crick tweeted that he had spoken to the person at the height of this allegations and he stated the following in his tweets.

Now to put it bluntly WTF is really going on?

Why was the BBC going to out a person based on speculation and not evidence.

That is not journalism that is vigilante action.

Because you see, there were quite a few names buzzing around Twitter as to who this Tory MP was supposed to have been.  BBC Newsnight last night created another witch-hunt because of this report.

People were being named and shamed on Twitter, by its users,  and speculation was rife as to who they were referring to.

Even Piers Morgan got in on the action, accusing BBC Newsnight of bottling it.

Now Piers of all people should know better that you can’t accuse people of being paedophiles if there is not enough evidence to back up that claim.  It is morally wrong to name and shame a person when there is NOT enough evidence and to be perfectly honest, I really do think it could hinder a Police Investigation.  And if the BBC DID name a person and it is proven that they had indeed been mistaken then they have tarnished a person’s character and that person can and will hit the High Court with a libel claim against the BBC.

And guess who pays for it, if the BBC loses such a libel claim.. yes us, each and everyone of us who pays for our TV Licence.

Now I am all for justice and protecting children, but what I don’t want is vigilante action by people who think they have the right person when in fact they don’t.  You see that is what could happen.  People jump to conclusions as to whom the paedophile is and then some mindless thug will take action against that unnamed person… whether it be by hate mail, smears or violence.

To me it seemed as if, by broadcasting last night’s episode, was knee-jerk reaction due to the claims that the BBC was protecting Jimmy Saville and the criticism it has had to endure… If BBC Newsnight wanted to take the moral high ground they would have investigated, and if they found evidence, the BBC would then pass it on to the Police to deal with… If the Police DID NOTHING then bring it to the attention of the public… but what they did last night to me was not a programme being a damp squid, but a programme being made under the banner of irresponsible journalism.

That is not Justice and never will be.  And it is definitely not protecting children or people who have been abused.  As much as our legal system has its faults, it is the law… and to be perfectly honest, I don’t think I want to live in a society where you are Guilty until proven Innocent.   And that is what is happening now.. people are being found guilty by the Public Court and not by the Law Courts.

People died on battlefields to protect our society and our democratic rights and one of our rights is that we all have the opportunity to be Presumed Innocent until Proven Guilty.

Post Script

Thanks to tweeter for pointing out it is ‘Damp Squib’ and not ‘Damp Squid’ as originally put.. mind you I don’t feel too bad now as according to a Poll from 2009, ‘damp squib’ was top of the list for misquotes.. The Telegraph says:

Many phrases we use are often misquotes from Shakespeare and other traditional sayings – and people do not realise they have made mistakes.

Now a new poll has revealed a top ten of the most misquoted phrases in Britain.

Top of the league is a “damp squib”, a term for failure named after a dud 19th century explosive mining device, which is often mispronounced as “damp squid.”


One Comment Add yours

  1. Ms M says:

    It is disgusting that they all waited to make public until that piece of shit was dead, they should have made it publlic when he was alive and chop him in pieces. A citizen that empathises with the victims.


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