Rafał Trzaskowski, the Polish minister who has called for the UK government and media to provide this country’s electorate with fair and accurate information about the meaning of a departure from the European Union, need look no further than the Daily Mail to see how our media behave.
As a recent article by Inforrm’s Blog shows clearly, the Mail is happy to twist the facts whichever way best suits that paper’s editors and owners – in this case regarding the Human Rights Act.
The principle applies to any other major issue; people in the UK would be far better-off researching the facts for themselves than trusting a right-wing press that is biased in favour of a right-wing government and its own interests.
The Daily Mail has been reassuring its readers that the delay in the repeal of the Human Rights Act (HRA) will not be indefinite and is just a matter of getting the detail right. “This is going to happen,” it quoted a government source as saying. “We will deliver it – but we are not going to be rushed.”
Getting rid of the HRA has been a Mail cause for several years. The paper accuses the Act of “undermining the sovereignty of Parliament and our judicial system”. It also denounces the European Convention on Human Rights, which the HRA incorporates into British law, as “a charter for criminals and politically-correct interest groups”.
The paper’s actions in relation to the Act, however, have not always matched these expressions of disgust and revulsion. Even in recent years the Mail has been content to seek the shelter of the Human Rights Act in court, and to threaten to use it against others. And it has also enjoyed the benefit of rulings arising from the Act – though without necessarily giving credit where it was due.
The Daily Mail actually tried to use the Human Rights Act to gag whistleblowers.
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