Tuesday, 11 November 2008

From Maria Colwell to Baby P

Sandy Fawkes, who died a couple of years ago, was always a favourite of mine in the 'French'. A couple of triple Bells, and the latest tale of betrayal by yet another film company who reneged on yet another promise to film her trip across the US with a mass murderer, a few scathing dismissals of whatever inferior talent was then in the news, the odd put-down, sharp and painful as a paper cut, to any blow-ins who got too familiar at the crowded bar all provided good value and very good company. I liked her very much.

One topic though never failed to provoke white-hot anger. Sandy was fashion editor on the 'Express' in the '70s, and her old man Wally drew 'Flook' for the Mail. A story came in that was dumped. A kid had been killed by its step-father. It was, she said, not regarded by the paper, or any other, as a story worth pursuing. She protested to the editor; she fought, and was allowed to write a piece of news story on the death of Maria Colwell. Her anger and indignation roused the rest of Fleet Street, and it became front-page news across the country. Well, that was Sandy's story. And every new tale of child abuse never failed to raise in her the anger the poor editor of the 'Express' must have felt back in 1973.

As the 'Standard' reports tonight, Baby P died in fear and pain and utterly betrayed by every adult around him to whom he looked for care and trust; he was paralysed from a broken back, had eight fractured ribs, fifteen wounds to his mouth and in total some fifty injuries to his broken little body. I trust in God that when he gave up the struggle for life and closed his eyes on this world he experienced a last, a final loving embrace from the Father who guides each one of us into that dark night.

His killers - his mother, her boyfriend and a lodger - were today cleared of murder because it could not be determined which had struck the fatal blow.

My skill at words is not enough to express a fraction of the pity, pain and anger that I feel, nor tell of the salt tears that drip on this keyboard as I write. Or of my anger at the purblind icy care of the State that assumes so much and is capable of so little. And I don't mean that there wasn't enough State in Baby P's short life; there wasn't enough of us.

There will be time enough to rail against the lunatic social engineering that makes this horror commonplace. For now, let's mourn the wee man's life. And I miss so much Sandy's eloquent rage at this time.


Anonymous said...

I will pass over expressing my feelings on the social services until my temper has calmed sufficiently to express them in remotely printable terms. But I think there should be a specially hot corner of Hell reerved for the doctor why declined to properly examine the poor child because it was grumpy. Grumpy! when the poor little soul had a broken back. That must amount to criminal negligence at least. Dear God a vet would be struck off for doing that to a dog, and probably be before a court into the bargain. What a shambles of a country we live in.

Anonymous said...

And this is from the same bunch of useless twats that failed Victoria Climbie.

If this was the private sector they'd be prosecting the MD for criminal negligence , but its the lazy lefty public sector employees so they get a written warning which doesnt mean shit. And the department manager enjoys a six figure salary and a seven figure pension pot.

I'm so angry; after the other case of the poor kid (whose name escapes me) who was broken accross someones knee like a 2 X 4 the reality is clear:

The system pays fucking idiots to have kids, not raise them; and as you have said before Raedwald, we;'re gonna be neck deep in emotionally stunted, unemployable violent bastard chavs before we know it.

This is an unbeliveably tragic tip of the iceberg...

Anonymous said...

Your article made me cry again. Though, Raedwald, that little one was lead not into the dark night, but into the light.