The immigration minister Tony McNulty says journalists “haven’t got a clue what they’re talking about” when it comes to asylum, and strongly cricised the Press Complaints Commission yesterday. “If PCC guidance worked then we would not have all the rubbish we see in the media regarding refugees and asylum seekers.”
I think this is the first time he has actually slammed the PCC, a toothless body full of executives who are supposed to regulate themselves. Roy Greenslade gave some great examples a few months ago.
Papers have been guilty of publishing false stories about asylum-seekers: the Sun, notoriously, claimed that unspecified “East European poachers” were killing and roasting swans from the Thames while the Daily Star alleged that Somalians had rustled donkeys from Greenwich park in order to eat them. The Daily Express ran a splash alleging that police had arrested two Lithuanian asylum-seekers linked to al-Qaeda who were plotting to kill the prime minister.
Senior police were so outraged by the falsity of the story that they issued an unequivocal denial, calling it “rubbish” and pointing out that the Express reporters had been told in advance that “no security issues were raised by their arrest”. The men, who might not even have been asylum-seekers, were probably involved in a drugs-related offence and were deported.
The media prefers not to acknowledge how this false reporting leads to more racism in general.
Meanwhile, former minister Keith Vaz, who clearly has little else to do now, is trying to get the upcoming game Bully, to be banned. Talking about the same theme, Rob Fahey of GamesIndustry.biz ain’t too happy.
This reminds me of the stupid spectacle of Hillary Clinton getting hot under the collar over the sex-scene in GTA3: San Andreas. Hello! Find something better to do with your time, please?
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