As I watched Monday night's Panorama about the sexual bullying that goes on in schools, I have to admit I felt an increasing sense of relief. Sadly, that wasn't because the programme presented a better picture of the situation than I'd been anticipating, or because the attitudes expressed by the young people who took part were more enlightened than I'd been expecting to hear: that would have been too much to ask.Because the boys never get bullied, harassed or shamed by the girls, naturally. Elliot must be the only living person who really, truly believes that girls are made of ‘sugar, spice and all things nice’…
No, what impressed me most about Jeremy Vine's exposé was that the subject was actually getting an airing, and that schools were finally acknowledging the sexism and abuse that girls have to put up with within their walls.
Grow up, love. It wasn’t that one-sided when I was at school, so I can’t bring myself to believe it’s all that different now.
And let’s not forget that the ground-breaking ‘research’ that has her wet at the gusset with the opportunity to excoriate men is….a Jeremy Vine special report for the BBC.
Last year, 3,500 pupils were suspended for sexual misconduct, 260 of whom were still at primary school. Their behaviour ranged from sexist name-calling, graffiti and verbal harassment, to inappropriate touching, sexual assault and rape. And it's not just girls who are being subjected to this barrage of misogyny; women teachers are increasingly finding themselves in the firing line as well.I note that the report just mentions ‘pupils’ – there’s no sex given. Are we to assume they were all male, then? Cath certainly seems to, but then, if all you have is a hammer, etc, etc…
What is different these days is the extent to which this sort of thing is happening and the levels of violence that are now being used. The rise in gang culture obviously plays some part in this, but that doesn't explain the prevalence of sex bullying in schools right across the board. And that was what I found most interesting about Monday's Panorama – that when young people themselves were asked where all this was coming from, popular culture, song lyrics, the media and the internet came top of their list.What, you mean, all the things that the left-wingers that now infest every public service are quick to proclaim as forces of good, or laud as ‘their culture’…? Say it ain’t so, Cath!
So, what’s the answer, according to our little misandrist?
Now, I'm not going to try to argue causation, or to call for rap music and MySpace to be banned, but I do think there's little doubt that the increasing normalisation of pornography, sexual violence and sexist attitudes to women in our society can't help but have some effect on how young people relate to each other.I know, let’s ban ‘Page 3’ and ‘Playboy’ magazines! That’s bound to do it!
Wow, the 70s revival is still on then?
But again, as with knife crime, binge drinking, drugs and underage sex, the fact that schools are finally being asked to deal with the issue doesn't mean that the rest of us are off the hook. Parents, grandparents, older siblings, in fact anyone who has any influence with young people has a part to play, too. It's no good teenagers being told that sexist attitudes are wrong if they then go home and see their dad treating their mum like a skivvy, or sitting around making disparaging remarks about women with the Sun's Page 3 open on his lap and porn playing out on the TV screen.It’s presumably ok if they see Mum trading in ‘boyfriends’ like some trade in cars, or little sis trotting off to school dressed in the finest Ann Summers can supply, I suppose?
If young people's attitudes are to be changed, then the attitudes of those around them need to change too.
Funny, but that doesn’t seem to excite the same kind of controlling impulse in Cath’s shrivelled bosom. Wonder why…?