When Safeguarding becomes Smearing – the Media and child abuse investigations
This is the Guardian article on the reports that pop-star Cliff Richard is not going to be charged for historic child sex offences.
Notice how the Guardian does not miss the opportunity to drag in a repeat of the (totally unproven) allegations. This appears to be how the Guardian is determined to report these cases. They did the same with another aging person against whom allegations were made and no charges pressed; see here for our report.
In today’s world of ahem ‘Safeguarding’ to be accused is to be guilty.
The real questions the newspapers should be asking are about what the police are doing. Here are some starters:
i. How can it have cost £800,000.00 to investigate a handful of claims? Given that there is (presumably, otherwise there would have been a court case, no forensic evidence) how much does it cost to interview say 10 people? This is money that could be spent on, say, running 5 youth clubs for a year in deprived areas.
ii. How can these ‘investigations’ be permitted to drag on for months? Again; how long does it take to arrange and conduct a handful of interviews? – Part of the answer to this one of course is that the game is to put the aging pop-star / retired general / MP out to hang and then sit back and wait for anyone to phone in with an allegation. This is the process that takes time.
iii. Why, when it is found that there is no case to answer, do we always have the mealy-mouthed ‘insufficient evidence’ – which is deliberately worded to avoid admitting the innocence of the accused. (From a perspective of royal power of course all who are not on the side of royal power are guilty).