Monday, 8 April 2013

The Paris Brown Affair...

This isn’t my usual sort of post by I’m feeling so annoyed by the Daily Mail and its so-called “journalism” right now that I just needed to vent.

Do something for me now: try to imagine being 16/17 years old again - you’d have just finished Year 11. I don’t know about you but in Year 11 I wouldn’t say that I was the best version of myself. I think I was a pretty ‘good’ (read: boring) teenager but, probably like most of you, I’d discovered alcohol and the hilarious, embarrassing and sometimes frightening consequences of it. It’s fair to say that I was also a bit self-obsessed, unthinking, vain, hormonal and generally a massive pain in the arse. We all were. I think any school teacher could vouch for that.

However, the Daily Mail have seen fit to vilify 17-year-old Paris Brown for some silly yet oh-so-teenage tweets she posted years ago. For those of you who don’t know, Paris Brown was recently made Britain's first youth police and crimes commissioner, meaning that she’s now the voice of young people on policing. Click here to read the article:

Clearly the Mail doesn’t think Miss Brown is right for the post… so if Paris Brown isn’t fit to be youth PC, who is? I can only assume the Mail would prefer someone like me who doesn’t write such ‘offensive’ posts on social media sites (I was clearly an extraordinarily PC 17-year-old because, after searching extensively through my Facebook, the most offensive thing I could find from me at 17 was a status in which I called Andy Murray an “arrogant twat” and a picture of me holding a WKD blue…) So yes, a teenager like me might be less offensive, but a teenager like me certainly wouldn’t have strong views, energy or charisma needed to be taken seriously as Youth Police and Crime Commissioner. 
Personally, I think that the majority of Britain’s youths would prefer someone like Paris Brown representing them. To me, Paris Brown’s tweets show some silly, off-the-cuff comments but they also show a girl who is feisty, passionate, who gets angry and who is, above all, a normal teenager from a normal background experiencing normal teenage issues like discovering alcohol, sex and drugs. And I bet that’s what the Chief Inspector of Kent Police saw in her when he gave her the job. The only difference between her and any other teenager is that she has had the drive and ambition to try and make a difference for teenagers and then had then media highlight her teenage indiscretions to the whole nation.

I think this situation either has the power to make or break Paris Brown. The only way that she can PROVE that she is mature and ready for the post is by tackling the Daily Mail head on, ignoring the people who seem to have forgotten what it’s like to be 16 years old or have wiped their own past from memory.
The Daily Mail are the biggest hypocrites of all in this - they're attacking a 17-year-old for using the word ‘pikeys’ and ‘illegals’ when every other article in the DM is about immigrants "coming over here” and “taking our jobs” and our benefits and what not. The words ‘pot’, ‘kettle’ and ‘black’ spring to mind.
Also, for the record, Miss Brown as apologised unreservedly for her tweets and clearly understands that it is unacceptable to post such views when you’re in a position such as hers (though, of course, at the time she wasn’t even in the role) Click here to view her apology video.

I wish Paris all the best as PCC. This attention, despite how negative it may seem at the moment, has brought her to the forefront of nation's consciousness. I just hope we see her turn this around and use it to hit back on the horrible culture of the British media vilifying people who don't deserve it (I’m looking at you, Daily Mail) and highlight the issues affecting young people.

On a side note, this blog post was written partly due to my rapidly growing despair regarding the Daily Mail. I recently signed a petition for Richard Littlejohn to be fired from the Mail because of his GROTESQUE column on how transgender teacher, Lucy Meadows, shouldn't be allowed to teach because of the "devastating effect" she could have on school children who "are not equipped to compute this kind of information" (IE that she is a woman who used to be a man). Miss Meadows tragically died (believed to be suicide but not confirmed) thought to be due to the constant harassment she received after her situation was brought to light by the media. This, to me, is far worse than any silly teenage tweets and yet the Mail stood behind Littlejohn, who remains in his position. Click here to sign the petition to have Richard Littlejohn removed from his position at the Daily Mail.

I'd love to know your opinion on the Paris Brown situation and the way the media has handled it, so feel free to leave a comment.


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