Catchy headline right? Just the right amount of snark to entice a little clickbait.
But is it fair?
For those people who have bypassed the scandal rocking the BBC this week here’s the briefest of recaps.
On Friday, July 7th The Sun broke the story that a top BBC presenter had been involved in inappropriate behaviour with a 17-year-old.
The parents of a now 20-year-old had made complaints against a presenter accusing them of paying for explicit photos of their child. This complaint was apparently ignored over a prolonged period which compelled the family to speak to other media channels.
The parents say the money obtained for the photos was used to fund an extensive drug habit.
The big twist happened on the 10th of July when the now 20-year-old refuted the claims saying that their parents had been misinformed and a lawyer was quoted saying that ‘nothing inappropriate or unlawful took place between the young person and the presenter.’
Everyone has been talking about it, it’s dominated the news and led to a huge amount of speculation as to who it could be.
And after days of speculation, Huw Edwards, a BBC news presenter, was named as the accused following a statement made by his wife to the press.
But am I wrong to question the media storm? Why is everyone so quick to cancel high-profile celebrities?
The evidence is ambiguous at best but because a major publication printed the story the presenter at the heart of the scandal was of course suspended following further investigation.
However, someone sending consensual explicit images at 17 is not illegal. Yes, there is an argument that paying for said images to a person under the age of 18 is a criminal offence but as far as the police are concerned, no such thing happened.
But now that the police have concluded that nothing unlawful has occurred and are not pursuing any action what happens next?
Can he ever return to a position of reporting the news after this? Who should decide?
There’s a macabre need to act as judge, jury, and executioner, especially against those in the public eye.
It’s a form of voyeurism that has become so extreme that in 2023 the slightest misdemeanour is dragged out into the public sphere for everyone to discuss and pass judgement.
Even a blogger like me is voicing an opinion on matters that really don’t concern me.
Because let’s get real here, isn’t this a case of someone married getting caught out either having an affair or trying to instigate one?
Is it gross that a man in their 60s is engaging in this? Of course.
Is it morally questionable? Abso-fucking-lutely.
But the fact is that it’s a private, personal affair. It’s definitely sleazy and gross but that’s what all affairs are.
These kinds of revelations are like a public wrecking ball. The punishment is swift and extreme and people that have spent years building a successful career can have it annihilated overnight.
You might think it’s deserving, or you might think it’s not, but the fact remains that in this day and age, one mistake can lead to professional suicide and in Huw’s case, a severe mental breakdown too.
I’m not a fan of ‘cancel culture’ I’m all for more awareness and conversation about what is right and wrong, but shutting someone down and effectively ruining a career whilst destroying a family in the name of righteousness doesn’t sit well with me.
It will be interesting to see what happens next, and how the public and the press will respond. I suspect we will witness a lot of people trying to attribute blame to those involved.
For me, I’m more interested at how a huge corporation such as the BBC handles complaints and treats concerned parents. Because would this have blown up quite so spectacularly if they had actually dealt with the original complaint in a more professional manner?
Most of all I hope his wife and children are ok, because let’s face it, they are the victims here and will be dealing with this fallout for years to come.