Monday, 22 January 2007

Mary Whitehouse, I am so SORRY.

The public morals champion began her career with the Clean Up TV Campaign in 1964. It became the National Viewers' and Listeners' Association (NVLA) the following year and she finally stepped down as its president in 1994. Following Mrs Whitehouse's death in 2001 the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, said: "In reminding broadcasters and others of their obligations in respect of taste and decency she greatly enriched the public debate about media freedom and responsibility."

I remember as a child sitting in front of the TV with my family and laughing at what we thought was the nosey do-gooder Mary Whitehouse. She was seen as overly prudish by a large portion of the population and was ridiculed by parts of the media.

Now a quarter of a century later I desperately wish we had taken notice of the prophetic Mrs Whitehouse. We and our children are now bombarded with mindless crap on daytime TV and reality shows in the evening.

Daytime TV programmes such as Jeremy Kyle, Trisha and Ricki Lake profess to help people overcome their problems. Utter shite, all these programs do is parade societies low life and morons across our screens, barely capable of communicating without grunts these people just shout, scream and swear. It is morbidly fascinating watching how poorly people can behave, it makes you cringe but people can't help watching. Most worryingly these programs are aired during the hours parents and children are at home together.

Reality shows such as Big Brother are designed in much the same way. The producers rely on the fact that if you put people from different backgrounds into stressful situations they will start behaving badly towards each other. Big Brother is just a old fashioned freak show, people tune in just to see the arguments, foul mouth rants and tantrums, without which there would be no show. Don't get me wrong, being an ex-sailor I've nothing against swearing, I've just got a problem with when and where it is used.

BLEEP: This really gets on my nerves, if something has to be excessively bleeped before the watershed then it should not be aired. You can watch one of these daytime shows where almost every word has to be bleeped, it's like bloody Morse code. Children are intelligent enough to realise what is being said and because mostly young mothers watch this crap, they believe it is an acceptable way to behave. I think we have all been out shopping and heard something like this from a young mother: "shut the f*ck up Brittany I'm trying to buy some fags." Nobody even thinks of reprimanding these idiots for their behaviour because you just know that all you are only going to get for your trouble is a foul mouthful.

I believe this weeks revelations on Big Brother have shown us that we have let our moral values slip too far towards the gutter. We have put a foul mouthed moron with the mental age of a 12 year old (at best) on a pedestal and now we have been embarrassed internationally. Gordon Brown thinks he can fix this with lessons in Britishness - crap, what our children need is moral guidance at school and in the home.

When children are young and impressionable, it really is a case of monkey see monkey do. You cannot watch a soap episode now without someone getting punched or slapped. This is not how things happen in the real world. If this happened in your local it would be closed down within a week or very empty. We now have a generation of kids who have no respect for the law, their parents or their school teachers. Unfortunately some of the young parents of these children are no better and it's only going to get worse unless something is done about it.

For a start we could give the Police the powers to deal with groups of yobs. Curfews and dispersal orders in New York reduced crime by a staggering 55%, surely this would be a great initiative that could be easily implemented in our country. The watershed could be moved to 10 pm and any show that requires excessive bleeping should only be aired after this time. The bleep was brought in to allow shows to be aired where one or two swearwords were used. It has now been abused to allow shows that are a constant torrent of bad language to be shown before the watershed.

As far as Jade Goody being a racist goes, I don't believe she is. She is just a girl who is thicker than a whale omelette and we have made her famous for it. Now through an international embarrassment we are paying the price.

Mary I am very sorry.

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