Sodom and Gomorrah didn’t have anything on Edinburgh. Or so a visitor would think passing newsagents in the city today.
The capital’s very own moral watchdog, the Evening News, is screaming from its front page about “Condoms for 13-Year-Olds – Lothian schools in sex health scheme.” Apparently people are concerned (for people read the Evening News and a Tory councillor) that giving away condoms will encourage a generation of teenagersto become sex crazed monsters.
Except for the facts: Edinburgh has Scotland’s highest rate of underage pregnancies. Preaching abstinence is clearly not working. The schools involved are part of the well established C-card scheme. The pupils are given advice and guidance. Condoms are not, as the headline would make you think, being given out with the turkey twizzlers at dinner time. And there are plenty other places in the Lothians that provide this valuable service other than schools.
So basically the story boils down to: Schools identify problem. Schools act to remedy problem. Big deal.
But in its own inimitable style the Evening News manages to turn this into a scandal that points at the failure of schools, the council and the goverment to do their jobs properly and, once more, gives the impression that when they’re not drinking, stabbing or overdosing the youngsters of Edinburgh are having orgies behind the bike sheds.
Is this responsible journalism?