01 November 2008

Lessons in bad behaviour

No. Not a story about Jonathan Ross and the celebrity culture though Dr Grumble does wonder if the use of his TV licence fee has been contributing to youngsters like Dr Scott not quite knowing how to behave. If the likes of Dr Scott want to behave like drunken teenagers that is their prerogative but do we need to pay large sums of money to people like Mr Ross to encourage this sort of behaviour on national television? And using Dr Grumble's licence money! Should Dr Grumble write to the BBC and complain? Or would that be a waste of time?

We all have some inherent idea of what is right and what is wrong - except, perhaps, Jonathan Ross. For example, hitting people is wrong. We are all agreed on that. Even, one would think, Jonathan Ross. So we all agreed that hitting people is wrong. Every one of us. Of course we are. Do our legislators agree? Amazingly they don't. Not yet anyway. Should Dr Grumble write to his MP again? Or would that be a waste of time? Like writing to the BBC who spend millions employing idiots.

The apparent futility of protesting has not stopped Dr Grumble. He has written to the BBC already. Nobody else need bother. (Grumble hasn't had a reply anyway.) But you might want to write to your MP about the other much more important matter. Or you could do nothing. Doing nothing would be easier.


Anonymous said...

I would prefer it if children were not hit.

BUT........ there are [potentially] far more corrosive ways of damaging them.
Ignoring them.
Frustrating them.
Belittling them.
Not supporting them in education.
Some would even argue that religious indoctrination [in childhood] is another form of abuse [look at what Dawkins has to say about it].
In short psychological intimidation can be far worse than the occasional back-hander [although I do not condone corporal punishment]

Should the state make pronouncements in these psychological sphere's as well ?
Draft legislation to deal with what is and isn't permitted ?
Introduce surveillance to monitor transgressions ?

Be careful what you wish for Dr Grumble, Jonathan Ross has carved out a nice niche for himself simply because he taps into views/sentiments commonly held by the general public, The Sun/Mail do exactly the same thing.

Wossy may be a plonker [although he was affable enough when I met him] but censorship and state control are much more of a worry in my book.

Dr Grumble said...

Dr Grumble doesn't read Dawkins on religion. Dawkins has a problem in that he cannot understand why those with a religion cannot see his point of view. Dawkins just cannot grasp why few people see the world the way he does through scientific eyes. It is quite a difficult thing to do if you are a scientist. But the world is full of people with views that do not stand up to scientific scrutiny. The vast expenditure on alternative medicines is testament to that. We have woo-woo wibblers everywhere. These are not people you can argue with. That's what Dawkins fails to understand. And it is why he is wasting his time. He can only preach to the converted.

But the religious question in childhood is an interesting one. Why is the one true religion the one you are brought up with? Do people just believe what their parents believe? Do their brains become immutable at the end of childhood so that, in general, they do not adopt an alternative religion? How can there be several one true religions? And if people are happy with their beliefs does it matter? Should we stop the minds of children becoming tainted with religious memes at a time when they are too young to see scientific truths? Does Dawkins have a view on this?

Of course if religion is a force for good why should we worry about scientific truth. Probably Dawkins has a number of arguments why we should. Recently even Grumble has had his concerns about religion stimulated by this article by George Monbiot which touches on the issue of parents bringing up their children isolated from any exposure to secular teaching and apparently contributing to the triumph of ignorance in the US. The curious thing is that in the US religion is not permitted in the public school system as a result of a rather far-sighted constitution. Yet in the UK with its established church and church schools religion is rather unimportant and God rarely gets mentioned even by the likes of Blair. Not when he is being a politician anyway. What an odd world we live in.

Anonymous said...

Are you aware of the BBC fat cats, Dr Grumble?

Dr Grumble said...

Gosh, anonymous, have you seen the comments on that fat cat article? There is a lot of ill feeling about the licence fee since this Jonathan Ross stupidity. It surprises Dr Grumble that the BBC have not assuaged some of these strong feelings by sacking Wossy.

Dr G used to be a strong supporter of the BBC but this episode has opened his eyes.

Unknown said...

BUT........ there are [potentially] far more corrosive ways of damaging them.

Hear hear.