So, the backlash has begun.
After he made the cardinal sin of a spelling mistake in a letter – because no one else has EVER done that before – of condolence to a mother whose son was killed in Afghanistan, it turns out the British public thinks we should be laying off Gordon Brown.
Writing in The Times, Melanie Reid argued that nobody deserves the vitriol being directed to him The Mirror has struck out at David Cameron for making political gain out of the matter, while the Twittersphere is submerged in ‘sympthy for the blind man’ messages.
There are valid points on both sides; surely Downing Street has someone with a keener eye than Brown to check his outgoing mail. And was it really necessary to record what should have remained a private conversation between the PM and Jacqui James Jones Janes? As for The Sun? Well, it has even emerged today that the paper doesn’t always practice what they preach.
So, after three days of wrangling, apologies and remorse, how about we let Gordon Brown gets back to the big picture? Apart from anything else, if we want to reduce the number of mothers in Jacqui Janes’ position, we need to allow the government to, well, govern.
It’s the same story with the drugs advisory council furore. Nutt’s comments caused a fuss, and quite clearly sent Alan Johnson a message as well as reviving the very important debate on drug legalization or decriminalization. But then yesterday, three more advisors made very public resignations.
I don’t doubt they have a point. But proper policy change doesn’t come from publicity stunts.
When the government is forced to spend their time dealing with these scandals – from biscuit preferences to allegations about eyesight – it takes time away from dealing with the real issues.
Pressure is important. Holding the government to account is fundamental for a thriving civil society.
But this is a democracy, not a free for all. If you have to shout about it, go to speakers corner.
Take your complaints through the proper channels, not to the tabloids.