By now regular readers will be aware of the low esteem in which I hold the Daily Mail. It really took the biscuit this weekend.
It may have escaped your notice that a dog was involved in an accident in Regent’s Park. It was hit by a cyclist. Not earthshaking news (unlike the earthquake in Nepal) but the Mail took this to its dark heart. Why? Because the dog, a chihuahua, is owned by one Gary Goldsmith. The Mail decided this was such a huge story that it dedicated 7/8 of page 5 to it. Page 3 was part of an advert, so page 5 would have had the biggest page traffic in the paper. A story about a dog.
You may not know of him but Goldsmith is a corrupt businessman outed by the Mail itself for drug dealing and pimping. He also happens to be the uncle of Kate Middleton, the goddess married to William, and who is expecting their second child. William is second in line to the British throne, so this child is a bit low down the pecking order, but the Mail loves all things royal.
Anyway, Gary’s wife was walking Cheech the chihuahua when a cyclist ran over him. Hey. Shit happens. You may want to call into question why the dog was not under adequate control. You may not. Said dog was not killed, but the wife said, ‘The cyclist was clearly going too fast,’ a claim later reinforced by Gary who, as you will recollect, was not even there. It’s a bad call, since even trained police officers are crap at judging speed, which is why they use radar speed checks. The Mail took it at face value. Speeding cyclist hits dog.
Let me repeat. The dog was a bit beaten up, but is doing OK. But Gary has gone medieval on the cyclist’s arse. He’s posted a photo of this (non)killer and sworn to hunt him down, in the process referring to him as a shit. Know what, Gary? Accidents happen.
It gets a lot worse. The newspaper, having previously stung Gary and taken him to task, has jumped onto his side. They have a special ‘name and shame’ phone line set up, and an internet site. Meanwhile, there are 300 odd schoolgirls still in the hands of Boko Haram in Nigeria, and the Mail doesn’t give a crap. That’s not a sensible editorial policy is it? Fret about a dog with a very tenuous connection to a commoner married to a royal? Check. Anything important, apart from trying to crucify Ed Milliband? Nope. Not even the earthquake that killed upwards of 1300.
I despise this newspaper.