Am I alone in wondering what real story lies behind the very odd Parliament groping scandal? A seemingly good man in a powerful position resigns because he touched the knee of a lady journalist back in 2002. Touched her knee! Dear God, whatever next?
And wasn't that 15 years ago, and is the knee such a forbidden region of the anatomy?
|Witches as they were 600 years ago ... A section of Baldung Hexen's portrait of the victims of an earlier form of witch hunting. By Hans Baldung - Source: R. Decker, Hexen, Frontispiz (2004), Public Domain, The picture|
Please don't think that I'm criticising people in my old trade when I reveal that lady journalists aren't exactly famous for being frugal with their favours. What some exciting moments came my way thanks to their natural generosity.
It isn't as if we are living through a time of extreme prudity. Look at a mobile phone and the most blatant forms of reproduction leap out at you. Ask teachers about extra-curricular activities at school and you'll think that human biology is Number 1 favourite subject, going by the non-laboratory experiments played out in school grounds daily.
|Witch hunter ... The dreadful Matthew Hopkins, a major negative in the witch-hunting of the mid-1600s. From a very rare print in the Pepysian Library, at Magdelene College, Cambridge. Wellcome Images Gallery:|
Isn't modern dress by our misses aimed at accentuating the desirable difference between the genders?
A third gender
Isn't this a society that at long, long last admits that there is a third gender and has not just changed the laws of church and land to accommodate them, but includes them openly in the media, even sterilised the stigma?
And yet when politicians show an interest in doing what seemingly comes naturally - at least for the unelected - somehow or other we are to tut-tut, to castigate them thoroughly, to be shocked to the quick.
Some historical balance?
Perhaps victimising men in this current witch hunt brings some historical balance. And, perhaps like the witch hunt in the middle 1600s, the mud-slinging and worse gives the gossiping classes - all of us - something to get their teeth into, to forget the vitally important work our leaders are supposed to be doing.
Back in the female witch-hunting days, the allegations were that the grand old ladies were shagging Satan, not to put to fine a point to it, plus 'combinations of the diabolical and the sexual'. And now it's 'The animal touched her knee!' 'The brute's hand touched her bottom!' Should capital punishment be reintroduced!
Of course we are being distracted for a reason. What could it be? Um, surely not as I suggested, to hide from us the in-fighting and squabbling, and the indecision from you-know-what
By the by, when I mention my experience of lady journos, please know that I'm not including the knee-touched victim, who speaks of her own shock that the government minister should go, should it be because of her. And good for her for speaking up.
Thanks very much for visiting the blogs for my adventure book, Sailing to Purgatory.