The Sun Sponsors Champions League Of Crime Victims: Cynics See Bigger Picture
“How they made Britain better”.
It is an “exclusive by their loved ones”.
David Idowu – Murdered at 14 by Elijah Dayoni, 16, in 2009
Ben Kinbsella – Stabbed to death aged 16 in June 2008
Damilola Taylor – The ten year-old was stabbed and killed by Ricky and Danny Preddie in 2000
Sarah Payne – murdered in July 2000 by paedophile Roy Whiting
Olaf Schmid – British Army bomb disposal expert killed by bomb in Afghanistan
What did four innocent killed young people cut down with their lives ahead of them and a war hero awarded a George Cross do to make Britain a better place? How did a ten-year-old being stabbed to death in London make the country better?
Did their deaths curtail crime?
The murder rate in England and Wales over the past 50 years rose steadily from around 300 a year in the early 1960s to more than 1,000 in 2002/03 when 172 deaths were attributed to the activities of Dr Harold Shipman. They have declined sharply since that peak with the fall in domestic violence providing part of the explanation for the decline. The Home Office figures published today show that England and Wales are in the middle of the European murder league at 13.5 deaths per million population. Finland tops the table at 23.4, followed by Scotland at 21.4, and Ireland on 20 per million. Northern Ireland now has a murder rate well below Scotland at 15.2. Austria has the lowest murder rate in Europe at 6.1 per million.
Is the war in Afghanistan won?
Well, the Sun says its not the victims who made the difference so much as their loved ones: Olaf Schmid, Grace Idowu, Brooke Kinsella, Richard Taylor and Sara Payne. They are the Sun’s “CHAMPIONS LEAGUE” of campaigners.
And – yep – CAMPAIGN FC is sponsored by the Sun, which thunders:
MEET the ordinary people who have achieved extraordinary things.
When tragedy blighted the lives of Christina Schmid, Grace Idowu, Brooke Kinsella, Richard Taylor and Sara Payne, they refused to bow down and be silenced by their agonising grief.
Instead, they turned their tears into triumphs for humanity and used their own traumas to transform the lives of others.
Good news, surely, that people hit by the pain of losing a loved one to an act of extreme violence can work to bring about a legacy – to make that death not in vain… to create hope from despair.
Good news that we live in a better Britain where death has no cover price. It is just a coincidence that this front-page special should occur at a time when the Sun’s parent organ, News International, is damaged by tales that its News of The World title hacked into murdered teenager’s Milly Dowler’s phone. (Incidentally, what league are her parents in?).
It is just a coincidence that with the Sun damaged by the allegation that Sara Payne was spied on by the paper’s hired spooks, Ms Payne should arrive to say:
At first I was outraged but with the help and support of my family, friends, the British Press and millions of ordinary people, my fight for Sarah’s Law began to snowball. Journalists were my tools for finding Sarah and they gave me a voice that got louder and louder until the powers that be started to listen.
When a grandstanding newspaper wants to patronise you, you should overlook the commercial agenda and focus on getting your message across to the people who can act on it: spineless politicians – those vain opportunists keen to appease the mob in the hunt for votes and legitimacy by joining the tabloid press in cranking up fear of peados and knife killers…