Sunday, 26 July 2015

Tradition and Revelation.

Today’s interesting news item is the fact that Lord Sewel, a prominent member of the British House of Lords, has resigned his various posts having allegedly been filmed snorting drugs through a £5 note from a prostitute’s breasts. The Speaker of the House of Lords, Baroness D’Souza, said that his behaviour was ‘shocking and unacceptable’ and that she has reported him to the police.

Well now, I do realise that the use of illegal substances is obviously illegal, but I’m at a loss to understand the shocked reaction. It’s a well attested fact of history that the rich and privileged members of the aristocracy have always sought their recreation in sordid ways. That’s always been regarded as perfectly acceptable; it’s just having fun. The sin has always been in getting caught, so Lord Sewel is just following tradition.

Ah, but maybe it’s the fact that the distinguished Lord has embarrassed his peers by using a £5 note instead of a £20 one. Bad form, and all that. Or maybe it’s the fact that such an incident serves to illustrate that those in privileged positions usually have sufficient influence to get away with such activity, while the poor people at the bottom suffer arrest, strip searching, imprisonment, and so on. That’s the sad bit, ain’t it?

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