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Monday 4 May 2020

Panorama Protests - Nastiness Going Nowhere

The manufactured right-wing outrage over last week’s edition of BBC Panorama, which has generated so much in hot air and column inches, appears to have finally run out of road. The Corporation has stood its ground, reiterated that none of the key revelations made in the broadcast was sourced from the interviewees, who were Labour supporters, and any further action will be down to broadcast regulator Ofcom.
As the Guardian has reported, “The BBC has stood by its defence of a Panorama investigation exposing shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE) among healthcare workers, after a formal complaint from the culture secretary. Oliver Dowden, in a letter to the BBC director general, Tony Hall, claimed the corporation was at risk of losing the public’s confidence amid accusations of political bias”. And there was more.
Responding further on Sunday in relation to Dowden’s letter, a BBC spokesperson said the broadcaster would like to highlight comments by the prime minister earlier this week in relation to PPE”. Comments like “I’m not going to minimise the logistical problems we’ve faced in getting the right protective gear to the right people in the right place, both in the NHS and care homes”. Hello Ollie! Your boss just admitted Panorama’s main claim!
But Dowden failing to engage brain before going after the hated Beeb is now a mere sideshow: the main fallout from the Panorama broadcast is the welter of hostile, often abusive comment aimed at those interviewed by the programme makers, and one who has been heavily targeted is Sonia Adesara, who you can tell as she’s a doctor.
Dr Adesara, in addition to being an NHS doctor, has campaigned for gender equality, is pro-choice, and is not white. So the wackos were lined up, ready and waiting when the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog ran their “Labour supporting therefore guilty of something or other” post last week.
After Professor John Ashton revealed “This amazing young doctor who was on Panorama with me is also now being terrorised and her Wikipedia subverted”, it was soon evident what he meant, with “Labour candidate, labour activist, Corbyn stooge, zero integrity, are these all on your cv? My wife is NHS nurse of 40 years and was incensed at you and the other 4 labour activists staged performances on Panorama. Shameful. You do NOT speak for the NHS. Stay out of politics” a typical comment. From a “Conservative Party member”.
On it went. “I suppose from your point of view China could do no wrong!” … “Think you should add ‘Labour Party Activist’ to your profile after the biased BBC Panorama last night” … "Being a left wing activist you are clearly spouting anti-white ‘R’ rants. You do not use a balanced view but one sided bias [sic] arguments. Listen to your own interviews!
All with one goal in mind: to discredit her testimony, thus fulfilling the objectives of the right-wing press and their hangers-on. For them, front line workers are heroes, but only if they keep schtum and don’t make a fuss about the problems the NHS has faced in dealing with Coronavirus infections. The bad news for those attackers is that they have failed.

The BBC hasn’t caved in, and Dr Adesara hasn’t either. And a good job too.
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