I detest even having to blog about this – the Sun’s manipulation of a grieving mother of a dead British soldier today is disgusting.
But, let’s be very clear. Gordon Brown lost the sight in one eye when he was a kid, playing Rugby. The sight in his other eye is adequate, but not brilliant. When I sat next to him recently at a Chequers seminar he can obviously see OK – but he uses broad tipped felt pens to write so he can see what he has written. His handwriting is not brilliant, but let’s face it who’s is these days?
He takes the time, despite these handicaps, to write hand-written letters to the relatives of British service men and women who die in Iraq and Afghanistan. He makes one mistake – for which his officials are clearly to blame – in the name of a dead soldier and the Sun pours bile on his head. I have my criticisms of Mr Brown – but they are about his policies, not his hand-writing. If he were any other person with a disability this vile campaign about his eyesight would be seen for what it is – political opportunism and despicable politics. Why are we even giving this airtime instead of debating the real issues about the conflicts we’re engaged in?