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Is alcohol really that bad for our children?

18th December 2009

Writing in The Telegraph, James Delingpole and his children drink a hearty toast to the departure of Chief Medical Officer Sir Liam Donaldson.


With my children aged nine and 11, Sir Liam Donaldson would disapprove of me splashing their glasses with a drop of claret for Sunday lunch after his latest ‘fatwa’ that children under 15 should not drink alcohol at all.

This is a ‘busybodying’ government directive better guaranteed to have the opposite effect to the one intended and one directed at the wrong target.

Britain’s serious child-drinking problems lie on sink estates among broken homes where they wouldn’t care about this directive, so Sir Liam is instead focusing on the "soft-target middle classes".

Far from thinking it a good idea of borrowing the French habit to gently introduce children to a glass of wine, Sir Liam declares this "a middle-class obsession".

Unfortunately, Sir Liam has a habit of crying wolf – he predicted up to 75,000 would die of avian flu, the actual death toll was zero, and that 60,000 of us would die of swine flu, in reality it was less than 200.

Sir Liam, who retires with a £2.2m pension pot, represents an administration which has wanted to micromanage everyone’s private life as it introduced a plethora of rules and regulations over 12 years in power.

Instead of tackling problems, it presents them as a pan-cultural phenomenon and penalises everyone.

It is not dissimilar to my school days where one child’s misdemeanour saw the whole class in detention. My response is the same now as it was then. I want to rebel and put the bullying ‘Sir’ in his place.


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Article Information

Title: Is alcohol really that bad for our children?
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 13564
Date Added: 18th Dec 2009


The Telegraph

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