It’s ‘cos they is black, innit?

Phone beats gun? Yes, but only if you have the ‘iBust a cap in yo ass’ app…

I had a rough night last night.

A combination of coughing up the odd lung or two in the aftermath of the ‘cold from hell’, and our two Maine Coons wanting to play with their feathery sticks at 4am conspired to keep snatching me from the arms of Morpheus.

Consequently, I was aware of this news item quite early this morning as we always have the unfailingly soporific Radio 5 Live on during the night.

Young women are being warned not to hide guns for their boyfriends, brothers or male friends in a new campaign by the Metropolitan police.

It is aimed at the growing number of teenage girls in London who, the Met says, are being persuaded to store weapons for male gang members.

Police are primarily targeting black girls aged between 15 and 19.

In fact, I heard it in the news bulletins about half a dozen times in all and it gradually changed in a very interesting manner.

It started off in a very similar way to the extract I’ve quoted above from the BBC News web page.

However, very gradually, the description of its targeting – black teenage girls – moved down the item until I actually heard one bulletin where ‘black’ wasn’t mentioned at all.

There’s absolutely no question of anyone else being targeted – the Met’s page on the initiative by Trident here makes it totally clear:

Under the strap line “Hide his gun and you help commit the crime” the campaign features radio, cinema and billboard advertisements aimed at 15 to 19 year old young women of African and African Caribbean heritage.

So why the increasing coyness of the BBC?

Surely if you’re reporting a story that has to do with a specific group – be it black teenage girls, Jewish greengrocers or lesbian climate change activists – then you mention that early on in your story so that the pertinent facts get out to your audience as immediately as they can.

You’d also be helping alert the people you were targeting as soon as possible so that it grabbed their attention and then they knew it concerned them.

All I can think is that there has been some severely misguided attempt to avoid singling out a particular group by a public broadcaster paid for by the public.

I can’t think why they would do this, as the ‘thought police’ in charge of human rights and minorities equality must have been through Operation Trident’s publicity materials and press releases with a thoroughness that would border on OCD.

I’m guessing that it was to avoid offending a particular group.

It’s ‘cos they is black, innit?

Shortsighted doesn’t even begin to describe this latest example of BBC righteousness.

Another BBC fail.

And yet one more reason why the whole matter of a licence fee needs reviewing as a matter of the utmost urgency.

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2 Responses

  1. Yes it is, and it does no one any good.

    Not many comments here either, are there?

  2. I agree.

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