Pooch and I both like to listen to news on the radio in the mornings. When we get up on weekdays it is "The World Tonight" on BBC R4 which is clearly an international program so quite diverse. However, if we listen in the evenings we'll get one of the regular UK news programs. What is very noticeable is how a theme gets a lot of coverage while other things that don't fit the theme get left out. Plus once the news machine gets a grip on a particular issue they then go on and on and on about it.
The topic of 'news from home' came up at the Stitch n Bitch group on Tuesday when I happened to be at a table with an australian, a new zealander, an american and a german. The american was talking about how there was a politician in her state misbehaving and how she just didn't want to know and couldn't see why so much airtime was given to it. We compared what the big themes were for our countries and my contribution was "Weather - there have been loads of floods, immigration...oh, and of course the pedophiles". Lengthy pause. "Pedophiles?" someone says. "Oh yeah I heard that the Pope had been dealing with the bad priests." "Oh no" I said, "I mean the famous ones."
The revelations about the mass abuse carried out by an admittedly limited number of celebrities from the seventies and eighties is something I find particularly disturbing since it is the celebrities of my own youth who are involved. Jimmy Saville was always a real oddball and I never felt comfortable with the juxtpositions of his lifestyle. Not that I ever suspected he had abused hundreds if not thousands of children - but that didn't stop me wanting to be on Jim-ll-fix-it. And as for Rolf Harris...a big part of me is still thinking that it can't be true. But then that suggests the multiple women accusing him must all be either fantasists or psychotically mercantile.