In loco parentis by Angela Caldin

Our daughter and her husband have departed for the UK with the sad task of burying my son-in-law’s beloved mother who died unexpectedly a few days ago. We have been entrusted for the duration with the care and sustenance of our three delightful granddaughters aged 11, 9 and 6. What a responsibility, what an honour. Action packed Our daughter has made us a spreadsheet so that we know exactly what each child is meant to be doing each day. As always happens here in any crisis, friends have rallied round with offers… Read More

Blaming the Victim by Angela Caldin

Some societies and cultures view a rape victim as to blame for what has happened to her. She is seen as damaged and may suffer isolation, be disowned by friends and family, be severely punished or even be killed. When this happens, we are shocked and call such behaviour barbaric. But the same phenomenon of the shifting of blame has now been revealed to have happened here on a big scale. One of the many horrifying things to come out of the report on the grooming of young girls by predominantly Asian… Read More

We Have Contact by Trevor Plumbly

I suppose we’ve all got our own ideas about the benefit computer technology has brought to our particular world with the previously unimaginable ease of access to knowledge, information and a broad bank of opinion. The problem I’ve got with all this technological wonder is that other people own and control it and I don’t think that some of them are all that nice. On the credit side, we can now cruise around in our cars safe in the knowledge that an electronic voice linked to a satellite on high will reprimand… Read More

My kingdom for a moral compass or Will I ever stop being naughty? By Emily Smart

Crime and punishment My six year old son Rudy came home last night with a letter he had written at school that I had to sign. I didn’t know what he was talking about until he broke (it didn’t take much persuasion), confessing that he had been naughty in class and his teacher had made him write a letter as his punishment. I read the letter, the gist of which was that he had put pen on his friend Roman’s ‘teeshert’ and that he was sorry. The letter ended with, ‘Roman can… Read More