Seeing the world through Rose-tinted tampons?

A white, middle-class professional woman was murdered in Bristol, prompting a quite disproportionate outpouring of media hyperbole including Joan Smith’s piece in the Independent berating the police for suggesting that it might be safer not to wander around dark places alone at night:

http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/joan-smith/joan-smith-how-about-telling-men-not-women-to-stay-indoors-2175960.html

Which didn’t go unresponded-to, even if they didn’t publish it:

Sirs,

It seems to me that once again an Independent screeching feminista has completely the wrong end of the stick (Joan Smith, 5th Jan).

After the murder in Bristol, perfectly sensible Police advice which boiled down to “it’s an imperfect world, so take precautions to minimise your chances of being a victim of it”, gets interpreted as an attack on The Sisterhood. I see nothing wrong with people taking some responsibility for their own safety. Over-reliance on state agencies to compensate for rogue individuals is not just blind complacency, it’s borderline suicidal.

A sense of perspective would be useful too. Before this event, when was the last murder in Bristol? Reading her article you would think it was downtown Chicago or some other hell-hole. She is also wrong in her assertion that it has “gripped the nation”. The nation is nothing of the sort. It may well have gripped those with an agenda to push, but I can assure her that since the news on the day it happened, the nation has moved on.

Would she be making this much fuss if the victim were male? The grip that is needed is Ms Smith’s one on reality.

Yours,

Paul Harper

Sirs, 

It seems to me that once again an Independent screeching feminista has completely the wrong end of the stick (Joan Smith, 5th Jan).

After the murder in Bristol, perfectly sensible Police advice which boiled down to “it’s an imperfect world, so take precautions to minimise your chances of being a victim of it”, gets interpreted as an attack on The Sisterhood. I see nothing wrong with people taking some responsibility for their own safety. Over-reliance on state agencies to compensate for rogue individuals is not just blind complacency, it’s borderline suicidal.

A sense of perspective would be useful too. Before this event, when was the last murder in Bristol? Reading her article you would think it was downtown Chicago or some other hell-hole. She is also wrong in her assertion that it has “gripped the nation”. The nation is nothing of the sort. It may well have gripped those with an agenda to push, but I can assure her that since the news on the day it happened, the nation has moved on.

Would she be making this much fuss if the victim were male? The grip that is needed is Ms Smith’s one on reality.

Yours,

Paul Harper