I was shocked, disgusted and shaken to my very core when the Philpott case unfolded – how a father could kill his own children for personal gain makes our claim to the pinnacle of evolution debatable. However, what happened after made me lose the ever-so-little shred of respect I had for the Daily Mail – the headline of ‘A Vile Product of Welfare UK’ simply showed the Daily Mail itself to be a Vile Product, using the deaths of children to score political points off its ignorant, easily-swayed core reading base.
What the Daily Mail has done has added to the anti-benefits culture that seems to be festering in Britain – as Owen Jones pointed out in his debate with another member of the anti-Benefits Bandwagon, Guido Fawkes, attacks and threats on the disabled who claim benefits is on the rise, the reason why? Papers like the Daily Mail, the Sun and individuals such as Guido Fawkes who paint people on benefits to be undeserving, people who should be ashamed of themselves and perhaps the modern-day buzzword – “scroungers”
What would make me happy is if the people of Britain saw this for what it was – disgusting political point scoring – but it appears they don’t. The Daily Mail, being the second-most circulated paper in our country, has a wide-readership and an avid following, and the following take in these arguments. For instance, on one Daily Mail article online – ‘Russ from Southampton’ posed the argument that “Philpott is merely the very tip of the iceberg, only exposed by chance when a benefits-enhancing plan went so horribly wrong.” See what I’m talking about? The ‘tip’ of the iceberg? What iceberg is this? Are all benefits claimants going to kill their children? No. This is why these anti-benefits bandwagons started by ‘news’ papers like the Daily Mail are nothing short of disgraceful.
It also has started a call for the death penalty once again – the comments in the Daily Mail article I mentioned above are rife with the calls for hanging Philpott, and pictures are trending around social media regarding how cheap a noose is compared to keeping Philpott, his wife and the family friend in jail. Wake me up when we are in the 21st Century – why are we suddenly developing this bloodlust? Without a doubt do this evil family deserve the harshest of jail sentences, but not death – otherwise we would not be better than them. But papers like the Daily Mail promote and encourage this barbarism, and it sadly works. I am only glad that individuals like Owen Jones are out there, shooting down the anti-benefits tripe promoted by the Daily Mail.
By Rory Claydon