Oh jolly, jolly good! That very serious MP, Maria Miller, is on to it. I was really wondering when she’d get there. Our latter day Boudicca, the Chair of the Women and Equalities Committee, is finally tackling sexual harassment and violence in schools. Not a day too late.
And we (yes, you and me) can help, she says. Now.
Start by listening to the terrible stories she’s heard – and you’ll get the gist. Teenagers pressured into sex, blackmailed over sexual images or casually groped in corridors, the accounts of three hundred volunteers handpicked by the optimistically named charity Fixers and encouraged to tell their worst. No problem they were all between the ages of 16-25 and egged on by Fixers eager 25-year-old focus group leaders. No validity problem there.
You see, it’s tales such as these that represent the ‘new social norm’ – the sexually charged behaviour that ‘permeates (children’s) lives online, as well as in the corridors and classrooms of their schools’ – that Ms Miller needs to establish the ‘scale of the problem’ thereof.
She needs your (I assume your children’s) evidence to do it – by May 22nd – as exaggerated and titillating, as you want.
No doubt a few ‘Nicolas’ will be encouraged to step forward.
How on earth do you solve a problem like Maria when she understands nothing about the dangers of reversing the burden of proof?
The ‘scale’ of the problem is actually already known. Five thousand, five hundred sexual offences were recorded in UK schools over a three-year period, including 600 rapes. Even unwanted ‘sexual touching and name calling’ has been recorded by our diligent national statisticians. Can we need more?
Ms Miller’s mission goes further of course. It’s to establish victimhood – of girls mainly, of course – laying the blame – on lad culture what else?
Strange how after all that feminist indoctrination girls are still too timid to tell their harassers where to get off or, indeed, despite all that football training they are still too feeble to whack them off.
Strange too that after years of female sexual liberation and laxity, it doesn’t occur to Ms Miller that girls are often more than ready and active participants in their over sexualised culture – and that they only complain when it doesn’t turn out quite how they’d hoped.
It takes two to tango, as they say.
But Ms Miller no doubt believes girls’ rights transcend any little fact like that. They must have been bullied into all this. Ironically, the backdrop to Ms Miller’s BBC Breakfast Time interview consisted of a gaggle of overweight schoolgirls in over-tight and over-short skirts retreating down a school corridor.
You do not have to be a representative of the Taliban to insist on appropriate dress codes, hair styles, to saying No to make-up or any other louchness; all the more necessary in mixed sex schools, so beloved of our educational establishment.
But instilling that sort of practical commonsense, moral education or basic discipline – which is the real answer to the problem where it exists, is not Ms Miller’s mission.
Seeking out sex crimes amongst hypersexualised children is. It keeps her busy and feeds the bullying narrative at the same time. (When did anti-bullying become an industry?). All she has to do is keep looking for issues to make girls victims of. Compulsory anti-bullying programmes will follow as day follows night. Every recalcitrant ‘sexist’ boy will be beaten into the feminist ground – unless he publicly confesses his sins, of course, or mouths the correct mantras.
Miller already has her eye on two new ‘sub–victim’ bullying categories –boys ‘pressured’ into this ‘inappropriate behaviour’ (what effect does it have on them?) and teachers who are also subject to sexual bullying. So far, she’s not searching out their inappropriate behaviour.
It’s like a mille feuille pastry – layers of crime piled on layers of blame and finger pointing. Pity the real victims of Maria’s new group think – children and parents who feel naturally alarmed by these contrived confessionals or finger pointing.
And where this leaves that unacceptable sexually charged behaviour she started with is hard to say. At a guess, even more charged, courtesy of the new blame games, presided over by the Chair of the Women’s and Equalities Select Committee.