It's only Tuesday and I am blogging. What has gone wrong? Truth is, I am representing napac at a memorial lecture in London this evening and so I have a bit of time to kill. Hey! napac might get a mention in The Sun tomorrow. I say 'might' because as I have warned you before you can never be sure what the media are going to do next or what new 'news' story will knock yours off top slot. You know........ if Katie Price or her Ex say something amazing...........that is likley to dominate the headlines. Anyway, they wanted to know what we thought about reducing the age of consent. You know, do we think its okay to legalise sex between adults and children? I mean, apparently most youngsters are having under age sex therefore they are criminals. So some professor says we should legalise it then it will make things better. Well, most people on the streets of the UK drive in excess of 30mph (the speed limit in built up areas). They are all criminals too. So let's up the speed limit to 50 or 60 then they won't be committing an offence! That will please the boy and girl racers just like lowering the age of consent will please child abusers. "Well me lud, she told me she was 13, I didn't realise she was actually only 12". I mean me lud, she's barely the same age as my granchildren, but come on what's in a year or two eh?" Mr Blitter you are 64 years old "Yes I know me lud but she was asking for it". "It's not good enough Mr Blitter, I sentence you to three months in prison".
Sorry about that but I get so mad. Last week I saw a string of pathetic sentences for child abusers and they made my blood boil. One bloke was convicted of a string of offences going back 30 years and he was RELEASED on bail to await sentence. Can you imagine how his victims must have felt? If he had been a serial bank robber (or even a shop lifter) he would be behind bars but no, stealing the life and soul of a child is somehow less serious than pinching a few quid. Actually, funny how none of those bankers are behind bars, some of them stole millions from us.
I know life is not as simple as I would like but what I did say to The Sun, and I've said it before, is we need to fundamentally change how we treat, educate and bring up our children. Most parents do a pretty good job but many do not equip their children to handle growing up and the pressures put on them............by society. We have a weird society when it comes to things like sex. The right wing press scream blue murder if we talk about 'sex education', so we are very represssed and ignotrant on one level, but then switch on Saturday morning (kids) TV and they are talking in quite salacious terms about "what happened last night" etc. No wonder kids are confused and so prey to abusers. I saw a child wearing a head band that said 'Sexy thing'. She was about 5! What in God's name were the parents thinking? I heard of another child's tee shirt that said something like 'pole dancer in training'. It's insanity. Please let our kids be kids, definately. But also let's accept that we are not doing a very good job at protecting the most vulnerable and I'm told that there are as many children being abused today as there ever was. How tragic is that?
Why is it that survivors voices are not being heard? Why do so many people not want to address the issue that, more than any other, tears the fabric of society apart? We all know that most, not saying all, but most, of societies problems have their roots in abuse. Why don't we do something about it? And I'll end this rant with something else I've said many times. There are too many abusers in postions of power and control. If we dare to believe (and I do) that something like one in four of the population has suffered abuse in childhood then think how many abusers there must be out there? Yes, I know they are cowardly scum, but it's still frightening.
I'm going to end on a lighter note. Cycling. A confession! I fantasised about napac becoming so big that one day it would sponsor a Tour de France team and I would be right there behind them in the team car. How sad is that! Well I know that ain't ever going to happen but on Saturday I am taking part in my first ever cycle 'Sportive' event. It's a bit like a race but it isn't. Some people take it very seriously and hurtle round the course at crazy speeds, turning in very good times. Some of us, me included, will just be happy to get around the course in one piece and collect our certificate at the end. It starts and finishes on Box Hill near Dorking in Surrey. I'm not suggesting you come out because it's too far for you but please think about me just after 8am on Saturday morning. It's going to be a lot tougher than the Old Kent Road!
Stay awesome everyone, and thanks for suffering my ramblings.