Wednesday, 31 May 2023

'Matt Hancock is just the latest MP to be thrown under the bus'

One of today’s discussion centre around former health secretary Matt Hancock and the recent leaked messages.

One reader thinks he has been thrown under the bus while another wonders how people like Hancock and Boris Johnson get into power?

Other subjects that are up for debate include a shopkeeper letting a thief go free after being told to by police and anti make-up posters in schools.

Read on and have your say…

■ It is so ridiculous that shopkeeper Jarnail Singh Atwal was told by police to let a thief go free (MetroTalk, Fri). Mr Atwal had caught him red-handed and locked him in his store, but officers told him to let the thief go or face prosecution himself, after the thief threatened to set fire to the premises.

This kind of thing has been going on for years. When I was 14, a friend of my uncle called the police to report a robbery at his home during the night. The friend was told by police they would pop round in the morning. My uncle’s friend replied, ‘How long do you expect me too sit on him for!’ They still took two hours to come. Darren, West Drayton

■ I work in a supermarket and we have shoplifters every day. Often we have to let them go because they know their rights.

Hence they come back the following day or week and do the same. It’s like a domino effect – they tell their friends who do the same. These scum are making a good living out of this. C, Halifax

■ To Ken in London (MetroTalk, Fri), being ‘a desperate individual trying to make ends meet’ – as you describe Mr Atwal’s thief – does not excuse theft.

He stole washing machine tablets. If I was that desperate, I wouldn’t even use my washing machine – I’d wash by hand.

I don’t agree with locking a thief in a store, but police are so slow to respond 
to crimes they class as petty theft, I can understand why the shop owner did that.

He is trying to keep his business afloat in hard times and shouldn’t be expected to absorb the consequences of the cost of living crisis and people shoplifting. K, Aylesbury

■ Friday’s MetroTalk page: no police, no vegetables, Brexit disaster and Covid mishandling. Sums up the Conservative Party’s 13 years of mismanagement. Neil Dance, Birmingham

■ Jennifer in Manchester (MetroTalk, Fri) asks how rogues such as Matt Hancock – and, may I add, Boris Johnson – can get into positions of influence and power over us. Simple: enough of us swallow their spin and vote for their party under our flawed electoral system.

Those who win the debate and get the most votes must be right, too, and must surely have a mandate – that’s democracy, innit? No, it ain’t. Proper democracy requires a balanced, educated, logically minded and sceptical electorate, rather than a load of suckers who swallow the porkies and promises to put the rogues in power for their own ends – and then moan about it. Gordon, Croydon

■ Matt Hancock is just the latest member to be thrown under to bus to appease the public and pull focus away from some other issue. Why else would the likes of Isabel Oakeshott have waited until now to leak 100,000 of the former health secretary’s messages, rather than when she was given access for the sake of writing his book? Matthew, Birmingham

■ Hancock is ‘hugely disappointed and sad at the massive betrayal and breach of trust’ (Metro, Fri). Perhaps now he has some idea how the rest of the country feel about him. Julian Self, Milton Keynes

■ What Oakeshott has done is wrong. It shows she has no integrity and is happy to make agreements she has no intention of keeping. George Curley, London

School sent the right message with its anti-make-up posters

■ Parents hit out at a secondary school after it removed mirrors from a girls’ toilet and put up posters calling make-up a harmful drug (Metro, Fri).

Now taken down, the messages in Worcester’s Christopher Whitehead Language College sparked a backlash.

I agree with the words on the posters, which included ‘If all girls started wearing no make-up… guys would have no choice but to fall for girls because of natural beauty’ and ‘Beauty is nothing without brains’. I also agree with where they were placed.

What is so wrong with natural beauty? It’s ridiculous how girls and some women overload their faces with make-up. I hope there was also a poster about fillers – so many women’s faces look as though they’re made of plastic.

As for those complaining parents, you should be showing your children how beautiful they are as they are, not encouraging them to look like painted dolls. Anne, London

■ I think the criticism of the posters about make-up and the removal of mirrors was misplaced. I think the aim was to try to help girls believe they are OK as they are, and don’t need make-up.

It was an attempt to boost their self-confidence and tell them they don’t have to succumb to the relentless pressure to be beautiful. Barb, Bristol

And another thing…

■ Absolutely bang on from Chaka Khan, who lashed out after being told who made the cut on Rolling Stone’s list of the 200 greatest singers of all time (Metro, Fri).

Chaka was listed at No.29 but said it ‘must be payola or some s***’ that Mariah Carey had pitched in at No.5. She also had a go at Adele and Mary J Blige.

Those she mentions shouldn’t be in the top 2000, never mind 200. Mariah Carey? Give me strength. Alan, Glasgow

■ Motorists, cyclists and pedestrians often disagree on each other’s behaviour, but the one thing I’m sure all agree on is that the worst people to deal with are delivery drivers, using any form of transport.

They park anywhere, block pavements and cycle lanes. and often drive erratically, if not dangerously. Worst of all are the food delivery drivers using mainly mopeds and cycles. So many are now on the roads. Paul, London

■ Sam (MetroTalk, Thu) moans about people without a TV licence being allowed to watch King Charles III’s coronation. The TV licence is outdated and should be abolished. The BBC should have the technology to run its business like Sky TV – people pay to be connected.

I don’t watch the left-wing BBC but have to buy a licence. My money is used to run the BBC for you to watch, Sam. What The Hell, Birmingham

■ The former home of actor Peter Cushing has been described as ‘Whitstable’s most recognisable property’ by estate agents (Metro Fri).

Perhaps the blue plaque is a bit of a help… Terry, Gillingham

What you said…

On Friday we asked you if the police could do more when it comes to catching thieves?

You said…

  • Yes – stealing is a crime at the end of the day – 95%
  • No – with officer shortages, there are bigger fish to fry – 5%

Thanks… and crossed words

■ As I retire, I’d like to say I’ll miss Metro on my commute. I’ve enjoyed the MetroTalk messages about various topics. Who could forget the root beer mini-saga? Keep up the good work. P, Tyne and Wear

■ To the person on the No. 13 bus in Leeds on Thursday who did half the crossword and put the Metro back. It was so annoying to find it half done. By the way, I finished it off for you! Addyb, Leeds

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