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Anorak | Eric Bristow is a willing wally in the football sex abuse panic

Eric Bristow is a willing wally in the football sex abuse panic

by | 29th, November 2016

eric bristow The hideous story of sexual abuse in football rides high on the news cycle. The grim testimony from victims of an evil has taken on a life of its own. It’s become a good way to prove the country’s morals. In directionless times it’s useful to have a cause to rally round. We don’t know what we are but we know what we’re not: paedophiles.

Barry Bennell, a convicted paedophile, has been billed as football’s Jimmy Savile . He’s not. Bennell has been tried and found guilty. Sir Jimmy Savile died a national treasure, feted by the great and good . What both men do share is an eagerness to portray them as part of institutional failure. For Savile it’s the BBC, the NHS and children’s homes (but not the police,  the Royal family  and politicians); for Bennell it’s the FA and the nation’s favourite sport.

Everyone involved in football is now a suspect. If you are not suspicious of adults you are a fool or worse. Trust is for victims.

So the NSPCC opens a hotline, the police trawl for corruption and Karen Bradley, the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, says  people “must come forward… Come and give your story, you will be listened to, you will be believed”. The media plays along, looking for someone on the wrong side of the panic to update the story. And today it finds Eric Bristow, aka ‘The Crafty Cockney’, five times World darts Champion in the 1980s, an MBE holder and last seen eating kangaroo gonads on I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! with Limahl from Kajagoogoo.

As such his views are, er, entirely relevant to the horrific crime child sex abuse. And irony of ironies for a man who walks to the oche to  Rabbit by Chas and Dave (“With your incessant talkin’, You’re becoming a pest”) Bristow’s chat has attracted ire.

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Posted: 29th, November 2016 | In: Key Posts, News, Sports Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink