Wednesday 19 October 2016

Taking a stance

Two reports have appeared on the BBC News website overnight - How do you verify the age of child asylum seekers? and Dentists condemn call for child migrants' teeth to be tested - concerning the widespread perception that many of the 'children' brought into Britain from Calais earlier this week were fully-grown adults. 

Both articles have a heavy bias in favour of voices opposed to checking these 'children's' ages/critical of those questioning the 'children's' ages. 

Newspapers are also criticised for showing unpixelated images of the 'children's' faces. (One of these BBC articles shows pixelated images of two of the 'children'; the other a generic image of a children in Calais.)

There is little doubt about where the BBC journalists behind either of these reports stands on the issue.

Update (afternoon): The Dentists condemn call for child migrants' teeth to be tested report has been updated to give more of a balance of voices. It has also been opened to comments and, as at the Daily Mail, the public aren't buying that these people are children. Here are the top 5 comments:
  • Has anyone seen the 'child migrants'? The government really thinks we're all stupid.
  • Dental check? They'll be needing hip replacements before long.
  • Having seen some photos of these 'children', I don't believe dental tests are necessary. Using all your skill and judgement, open your eyes and look at them. Personally, I'm confident I can tell a child from an adult pretty much every time. These are adults.
  • These people hijack lorries to try to get into this country. Of course they will lie about their age to do the same. I had to laugh at the BBC V Derbyshire show, having three lefties arguing against the only person talking any sense, David Davies.
  • We are being taken for fools. A shame that only one MP had the kahunas to speak about this...
Further update: The BBC appears to have heard the criticisms. Today's BBC One's News at One showed some of the photos of the oldest-looking 'children' (unpixelated) and said that some people were concerned that they weren't children. Also, the French authorities were quoted saying they hadn't really checked the migrants' ages, and the report ended by saying, "On both sides of the Channel officials know maintaining public confidence is vital". 


  1. Talking of bias...there was a report on BBC TV news last night about the US election. All about how Trump was doing so badly with women voters...No surprises there.

    But what did particularly appall me was (a) the reporter stated that there was "even one poll that put women voters 30% more inclined to Clinton than Trump" citation as to which poll... (b) no mention of the fact that Trump is 2% ahead in the LA Times poll and was ahead in the Rasmussen poll a few days ago or that Clinton support has been slipping in other polls. No, any uninformed viewer would simply gain the impression that Trump was dead in the water and had fallen way behind in the polls.

    Similar stuff from Naughtie and Robinson on Today. Amazing how Bill Clinton speech is given such soft treatment. NO mention of the rape allegations against him and how his rallies have been disrupted by protestors brandishing posters referring to those allegations. No mention of the controversy over Hillary's trashing of his accusers. No - his words were treated with almost religious respect. Then Robinson has on a "Trump supporter" - well the BBC's ide of a Trump supporter...i.e. someone that even they have to confess is friends with the CLintons and has supported the Clinton Foundation, who then proceeds to suggest that Trump's bid for power was never seriously meant, that he always expected to lose and, the implication was, it had just been done as a publicity stunt. That may all be true, for all I or anyone knows, but it hardly qualifies the person as a "Trump supporter" to be make such a damaging allegation.

    No mention that Trump

  2. "On both sides of the Channel officials know maintaining public confidence is vital".

    Good luck with that, guys.


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