Now that the report into historic Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) in the South Yorkshire town of Rotherham has been published and disseminated, the ranks of pundits have suddenly and miraculously become highly knowledgeable on all matters relating to social services, policing, grooming, and whatever else it needs to generate lots of clicks for Themselves Personally Now.
Nowhere is this more prominently on view than at the bear pit that is Telegraph blogs, where the unholy trinity of Tim Stanley, Dan Hodges, and Dan, Dan The Oratory Man has persuaded itself that, unlike all those useless social workers and rubbish cops, they have all the answers, and that we all need to talk about it. Except that, in one very obvious way, we cannot.
Hodges goes first: “we cannot ignore that race played a part in these crimes” he asserts, going on to tell “The abuse experienced by the children of Rotherham is beyond belief ... But one equally vicious aspect of the assaults on these children is identified in a less explicit way. And that is the manner in which the vast majority of the Rotherham victims were also racially abused”.
Yes, they weren’t allowed to talk about race, but it was about race. Really? Not really: many of the victims were girls from Pakistani heritage families. Those who abused them weren’t discriminating racially: this was more about misogyny, control, and exploitation. And that means Stanley and Hannan, who both take their cue from Hodges, have a distinctly shaky foundation to their efforts.
The former homes in on social services: “The social services system is in need of overhaul, but there is also a moral question to be asked here. While some of the systemic problems in Rotherham can be blamed on underfunding and understaffing, or put down to political correctness gone mad, the reality is that individuals either failed to see or chose to ignore evidence of abuse”.
It wasn’t political correctness, as I pointed out yesterday, and social workers reported everything back up the chain. Did Stanley read the report? Whatever. Reading the report is something Hannan does not need to do in order to make his pre-determined conclusion, which he delivers in typically sniffy fashion.
“If you take a group of people, not all of them terribly bright, and encourage them to be more concerned with following procedure than with doing the right thing ... you will end up with much injustice and an occasional atrocity”. Yes, Dan says that they were all too thick to understand – not like clever Himself.
But, unlike their dubiously talented array of pundits, Telegraph blogs cannot trust those who float around the comments sewer to have their say. “Comments are closed” on all three posts. They aren’t allowed to talk about race, either.