In light of an NSPCC study showing that Facebook has exposed the majority of its British child users to violence and bullying, with ‘images or videos of beheadings, terror attacks, violence and sex . . . routinely shared on popular networking platforms’, NHS chief Simon Stevens warns that health services are ‘picking up the pieces’ of an epidemic of mental illness among children fuelled by social media. He has urged companies such as Facebook and Google to take more responsibility for the pressures they are placing on young people.
For years now, family campaigners and concerned parents have been warning about these dangers to little or no effect. They have also warned about the effects on children of family break-up, and perhaps Mr Stevens and the NSPCC should ask why children become addicted to viewing appalling content on the internet, or seek virtual friends who turn out to be enemies. Parents are often blamed for not overseeing their children’s internet use, but it is increasingly likely that the children are living with only one parent, with or without a not-parent.
Worse, as of March 2017 there were over 72,670 children in care in England and Wales, not far behind the UK’s prison population for the same year (83,620). Given the fact that so many children in care end up in prison – if they do not commit suicide – it is strange that so much attention is paid to the symptoms of a problem rather than the problem itself: the disintegration of the modern family. But the Government seems worried only about responding to issues raised by the Left, and the Left is chiefly interested in the crimes of capitalism; the welfare of children is of interest only insofar as it can weaponise the anti-capitalist campaign.
To cultural Marxists, family break-up is to be welcomed because they see the traditional family as the root of all evil – something that must be reconfigured out of existence so that the State can take its rightful place as the true and only parent of every individual, until everyone is in State ‘care’. By all means tackle the dangers of the internet but look to the root causes and strengthen the family.