15 March 2007 Edition
Rape verdict scandal
May I add my voice to the outrage at the suspended sentence handed to the man convicted this week of rape but can I also urge caution regarding calls for mandatory sentences.
In the United States, mandatory sentences have apparently had unintended consequences for teenagers who have had consensual sex as boyfriend and girlfriend. They have left judges with little or no room for manoeuvre when these have come to light, reported to the police and resulted in court cases.
That said, this week’s judgement is a scandal and calls out for statutory guidelines for judges in dealing with cases, particularly involving sexual offences.
Terry Wogan’s charity leeching
Terry Wogan has shrugged off complaints about him being paid more than £1,000 an hour to host BBC TV’s Children in Need fund-raiser.
The celebrity protests that the money doesn’t come out of the charity chest but from the BBC. But isn’t that “BBC money” paid by the public through the licence fee?
As one of those people paying Mr Wogan’s £1,300 an hour to host a charity event, I say: (a) you don’t need the money, Terry; (b) aren’t you ashamed that someone of your wealth is earning large sums of money from a charity event?
Terry Wogan says: “I’ve been ignoring this row. It’s beneath contempt.”
I would suggest that it’s Terry Wogan’s smug attitude to leeching off a charity event that is beneath contempt.