It may be hard to imagine – impossible almost – but a three-year old boy is now considered to be the youngest criminal in all of Britain. His name is, of course, kept confidential, but there is no doubt that the toddler is being investigated in relation to a case regarding damage to household property.
It is almost incomprehensible, really. After all, children at that age DO have the capacity to wreak havoc, especially at home. They do not know any better. So makes this toddler different from any other toddler who gets mischievous every now and then?
According to Chris Grayling, the shadow home secretary:
“This is a clear manifestation of the first signs of offending. These instances underline the very deep social problems we have in some parts of the country. It is part of the very complex picture we call broken Britain.”
Not to offend anyone, but in any nation where children as young as three can be considered criminals, there really is something broken! And this is actually the least of it. The Telegraph, in its report about the boy, cited many other cases wherein children as young as eight and nine have been accused of rape! Offenses such as theft, possession of knives, and assaults are also apparently not unheard of.
I blame the parents. Children below 10 (and even beyond this age, actually!) are in their formative years – years in which their values and perspectives are shaped. Where were the parents when the children were committing these crimes? The kids may not be prosecuted as adults because of the law, but the parents should be held accountable, don’t you think?
For the longest time now, the British government has banned TV shows from advertising products within the programme itself. In an interesting turn of events, the government is now lifting the ban. The move will allow commercial broadcasters to place products in various TV shows, thereby advertising them.
The decision has not been announced officially but the speculation is that it will be made early this week. For sure, this announcement will be a controversial one, albeit much welcomed by TV producers. However, the ban will still remain for other broadcasters such as BBC as well as all children’s programmes, regardless of network.
So why has the government changed its stance? The Telegraph says:
The main factor behind the rethink by ministers has been the financial strictures faced by ITV and other commercial broadcasters during the recession, which have seen their advertising revenues badly hit.
Government sources also cite a European parliament directive which came into force almost two years ago permitting product placement in sport and light entertainment programmes – if national governments allowed it.
More than this, Britain is actually a little lagging in this respect. Other European Union members have already started allowing TV programmes to place products.
It will be very interesting to see how quickly the British networks are going to pounce on this opportunity. For sure, the primetime shows will have a wide array of choices as to which products to use. Bottom line, more cash will be flowing into the coffers because of this change.
Photo courtesy of The Telegraph