Friday 20 September 2019

Child exploitation in Scotland

This is creepy and disturbing. The Scottish government has formed a 'Children's Parliament' of 9 to 11 year olds. They put these kids in a room with Alison Douglas from the state-funded temperance group Alcohol Focus Scotland and filled their heads with anti-alcohol policies which they then regurgitated on camera and in a report.

As the Scotsman reports...

Members of children’s parliament want alcohol to be made ‘less visible’
Members of Scotland’s Children’s Parliament have called for alcohol to be made less visible and for tougher measures to stop people drinking in public spaces.

A new report published today – compiled with the help of nine members of the Children’s Parliament – used workshops with 90 primary school pupils between the ages of nine and 11.

.. The report concluded alcohol should be made less visible in shops and on TV, as well as calling for the removal of adverts from billboards.

The Children’s Parliament also called for an end to alcohol firms sponsoring events at which children will be present.

Does anyone seriously believe that primary school children came up with these policies off the top of their heads? This is propaganda of the crudest variety.

Alison Douglas, chief executive of Alcohol Focus Scotland, which aided in the research, said:
... “The Scottish Government’s forthcoming consultation on alcohol marketing provides a real opportunity to show we are listening to children and will take action to protect and promote their right to grow up healthy and happy, free from alcohol harm.”

So the Scottish government has a public consultation on alcohol on the way. The government funds its own anti-alcohol lobby groups, of which Alcohol Focus Scotland is one. It convenes a group of children who are, aparently, too young to be exposed to the sight of beer in shops but are old enough to make detailed policy proposals. And their policy proposals are going to be fed into the consultation as not only the views of the public but of the chiiiiiildren.

If this was happening in some benighted dictatorship overseas, we would not hesitate to mock it as the brazzen parody of democracy it is.

Cathy McCulloch, co-director of the Children’s Parliament said: “Children have the right to have their voices heard in matters that affect them and we, as adults, have a responsibility to listen and respond."

Ooh, the children have spoken! We'd better do what they say. Don't want to disrespect the children.

Give me a break.

Public health minister Joe FitzPatrick also supported the work, saying the voice of children should be heard on this issue.

He said: “It is crucial that we seek and listen to the views of children and young people in determining how best to prevent and reduce the impact of alcohol on them.”

Is that, by any chance, because you can get them to say whatever you want to hear?

The recommendations put forward by these little kids (sorry, 'Members of Children Parliament Investigators'), as recorded in the report, include such pearls as:

Investigators recommend that hotel room minibars do not include alcohol and that adults reconsider all-inclusive holiday packages which include alcohol.


Investigators called for alcohol to be sold in adult-only sections of shops, separate rooms in regular shops and supermarkets dedicated to alcohol sales.

I'm not saying that it's impossible for 9-11 year olds to spontaneously come up with ideas like this - ideas which just happen to be Alcohol Focus Scotland policy. I'm just saying that they didn't.

Watch these poor, exploited kids reading the scripts that have been written for them. They are too young to have given meaningful consent to be used like this.


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