Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Blaming The Victims (Again)

Barbara Ellen seems to be making a bit of a career out of sympathy for the most unlikely targets.

From the Edlington junior psychopaths to Gordon Brown via her own thoroughly discredited profession, she’s now decided the next person who needs love and understanding is war-memorial piddler, Wendy Lewis.

Yes, really:
Lewis, 32, appeared at Blackpool magistrates' court and then ran away before she was sentenced. On her arrival, she'd been surrounded by more than a dozen war veterans, who berated her as "disgusting" and slow handclapped her into court. Now I wonder, however "disgusting" Lewis's actions were, was there any justification for this?
Does there need to be?

To whom should they justify themselves, Barbara? You? The rest of the ‘ahhh, the underclass are disadvantaged!’ CiF crowd?
…while the sex is regrettable and, in public spaces, illegal, it's only what happened on the cenotaph that is definitively morally unforgivable – and even this is muddied by the obvious levels of intoxication.
Ah. Right. The demon drink made her do it! She’s not responsible!
Does anyone believe that Lewis walked out of her house that night in June intending to urinate over a war memorial? Or do we all agree that she was trashed, so drunk she didn't know what she was doing?
Yes, probably.

But unlike you, we don’t consider that to be mitigation...
Looking at other high-profile cases of war memorial urination (Philip Laing in Sheffield; Douglas Tullin in Newcastle upon Tyne), this seems to be the pattern – person gets smashed and because they're so drunk, or just plain thick, they probably don't even register that the blurry shape they're taking a slash on is a war memorial.
So? I fail to see how that makes anything better.

I don’t want my streets to smell of urine any more than I want my war memorials to be so decorated.
If memory serves, Laing was unreservedly contrite once he'd sobered up. Indeed, somewhat buried in the coverage of Lewis, among the pointed and irrelevant references to her being a single mother, there was the fact that, at a previous hearing, she'd apologised for her behaviour.
Completely off her own bat? Or advised to do so by her legal counsel as a standard way of avoiding punishment?

The ‘same old, same old..’ magistrate’s court dance, in other words? Is anyone other than Barbara (and the occasional new magistrate) ever fooled by that?
Why then,did she end up running into court, hiding under her jacket, shouting what appeared to be an expletive, and then run away again? Considering the previous apology, why did this turn into anything other than a routine sentencing procedure, for which Lewis, for her sins, had obediently turned up? Well, sorry, veterans, that's your fault.
Wait, what?
…it was intimidating and unseemly, a form of heckling and harassment, to surround a woman on her own in the way they did.
Ummm, it’s a bit late to start in with the ‘fragile flower of womanhood’ stuff to deflect any unpleasant consequences of her actions when your chosen heroine has been arrested for getting completely hammered, giving a blowjob and urinating in public like a dray horse, Barbara.

It doesn’t help that she looks like she could bench-press a dray horse, either…
Moreover, their actions had consequences.
Oh, please!

Why do their actions suddenly have consequences, and hers do not?
So yes, Lewis was disgusting, and it says something about her too that she scarpered. However, perhaps the veterans should take on board that in this instance they played their own key part in justice not being done.
Actually, I think justice was done.

A case that might have gone unnoticed – apart from a brief mention in the local press – and unpunished – she wouldn’t have got anything like the punishment she deserved – now attracts national attention. A woman whose name would have been quickly forgotten by the court processors is not firmly embedded in the Internet’s search engines.

In short, public shaming appears to have worked, for once.

In fact, if we count the cat woman of Coventry (and I do), then twice...


Jiks said...

A slow hand clap is very restrained response to the actions of this creature. Gotta love the typical left double-think deployed in that article...

JuliaM said...

"Gotta love the typical left double-think deployed in that article..."

She's truly something, isn't she?