Via the invaluable Mark Devenport of the Beeb, we have this little gem from a sitting of the Stormont Health Committee to discuss the Department of Health’s strategy for combating sexual violence. Committee chair Iris Robinson (DUP) has no doubts about what should be done:
MLAs were cross questioning Health Department officials on their draft Sexual Violence strategy when the chair, Iris Robinson, espoused some forthright views on the need for the media to “curtail material that feeds minds that may commit sexual or copycat crimes”.
The Strangford MP went on to accuse TV bosses of broadcasting “the most violent filth that you could ever wish to see before the watershed…With the greatest respect to anybody who is a fan, programmes such as ‘Emmerdale, ‘ Coronation Street’, and ‘EastEnders’ try to outdo one another in graphic storylines. They portray bed-hopping and sexual promiscuity to which children are exposed because they are broadcast before the watershed. Such programmes are good at highlighting certain themes and illnesses such as AIDS, but they do not deal with the main issue; they are saying, “Such behaviour is normal”. We do not hear about prevention or about having a lifelong love partner.”
Without naming Gordon Ramsay, she went on to lambast “a chef whose every other word is the F word”. She finished by declaring “I do not care if I am called a “Mary Whitehouse”; indeed, I wish there were more such people, and it is sad that she passed away.”
Quite. But should impressionable pre-watershed viewers be exposed to Stormont?