Out there on the ‘net, there are some people who post abusive comments about others. Who knew? Well, she doesn’t deign to answer such points, but Melanie “not just Barking but halfway to Upminster” Phillips is on their case. Bullying and hate are clearly the fault of Facebook, with Judeo-Christian moral values being “junked” by society, and the education system is, as ever, to blame.
She's Out There ... Somewhere
But there is a problem right from the title – “The internet has peeled back our culture and shown how cruel and selfish we really are” – which shows the shallowness of Mad Mel’s ranting. There have always been cruel and selfish people out there. That some of them have access to a keyboard and a connection is not the internet’s fault. That’s like blaming the Royal Mail for hate mail.
And, above the ranting is a whiff of rank hypocrisy. Take this extract: “Women seem to be disproportionately targeted by men for such attacks on the net. But it’s by no means only directed at women; it also takes the form of attacks on disabled people, individuals who have been bereaved — in short, anyone who appears vulnerable. It is therefore a particularly vicious type of bullying”.
Bullying vulnerable people such as the disabled? Why should that sound familiar to Daily Mail watchers? Maybe it’s because this is the paper that ran the story claiming that the Motability scheme “handed out free cars” to people with “made up illnesses”, a campaign reinforced by a typically nasty Littlejohn column. Or picking on a less than totally mobile pensioner because he claimed universal benefits.
And, talking of young people being bullied, there is also the case of student Elly Nowell, who was sneeringly attacked by three Mail pundits for deciding she didn’t want to attend Magdalen College Oxford, and, to take her behaviour beyond the pale, writing about it in the deeply subversive Guardian. A better example of full-on cyber bullying would be hard to find.
That is, until one considers the equally nasty bullying handed out by the Mail to teenager Rory Weal, as punishment for speaking at the Labour Party conference. Spearheading the tirade of nastiness on that occasion was, you guessed it, one Melanie Phillips, who gleefully laid into her chosen target from the insulated comfort of the Dacre bully pulpit.
Mel, you’re nothing more than an intolerant hypocrite. Stop lecturing everyone else on morals and being righteous, and put your own house in order first. This kind of bullying and bigotry might pay the bills, but it’s not good enough.
Allow me to conjugate:
"*HE* bullies, *YOU* hector, *I* exercise my essential right to free speech."
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