Did anybody watch any Monday night TV and see the chauvinistic socially awkward dodgy facial hair mobile car repair conman on Watchdog? The stuff coming out of his mouth about women made me cringe. And, never slow to take the moral high ground, the Rogue Traders presenter made an absolute fool of him. The message – how dare he make comments like that about women! And I totally agree…
…however, just minutes later up pops Michael Palin on his well publicised travels around Brazil. The first thing he does is take a trip down the beach with some sort of guide to go, as he puts it, ‘girlwatching’. The guide says how you have to look out for girls with backsides like melons and Palin guffaws along.
Why is it wrong for an eccentric, ugly and socially excluded guy to make these comments about women but it’s ok for one of our national treasures to be just as bad? I think it shows that if the packaging is trustworthy and charming then we’re easily fooled into missing the blatantly offensive and oppressive.
Palin’s attitude goes back to before my time, to stories that are rife now of sexual harassment in the work place in the 80’s and before. In everyday life today I don’t think Palin’s attitude would be tolerated yet as a nation we’re quite happy to watch along and turn a blind eye – what we let in through our eyes and ears influences us massively. Everything needs to be watched with discretion otherwise out integrity, judgment and attitude will easily get damaged.