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Joe Riley column: Time to say N.O. spells NO.

Byline: Joe Riley

SATURDAY is a good day to write about sex. And an even better day to have it.

In habit-forming and newly workaholic 24:7 Britain, tonight's the night -and only night -that the earth moves for millions of lovers of whatever persuasion.

But just when you thought the law had finally settled on who could do what to whom and at what age in the privacy of their own homes, thebedsheets have once more become ruckled.

Channel 4 is planning an Adult At 14 season.

This will include one of Liverpool's Capitalof Culture judges, Miranda Sawyer,arguing that the age of consent should be lowered by two years from 16 to14.

Anyone who thinks this a universal issue,not directly impinging on our own suburban glades, should think again.

Also screened will be a drama -set in Liverpool -about the pressures on the young to have underage sex.

It strikes me that absolutely everything on supposedly emotive subjects nowadays -sex,drugs,drink, smoking,burglary,mugging, domestic violence, vandalism, truancy et al -is geared to a premeditated acceptance that excesses of such behaviour will occur,almost as of right.

In this case,just because children are physically maturing earlier (whichis completely unrelated to their mental or emotional maturity), there is a bland -or rather blind -nod given to both promiscuity and freely available sex as the norm.

The progressives'agenda then switches to how best to cope.

Alas, the reare seemingly no television or radio programmes simply about saying NO to anything anymore.

This readily explains a life statistic unearthed by a Sunday broad sheet that ``a teacher is bitten, scratched,kicked,punched or spat at every seven minutes.''

Who needs law-makers and enforcers,mentors, theologians (including the odd gay bishop) or even newspaper agony aunts, when all the world's ills can apparently be solved by over-paid psychiatrists and the non- stop proliferation of telephone helplines?

INCOMING details are still scant,but an American study of 26,000 people involved in car accidents shows that folk weighing beteween 15 and 18 stones were twice as likely to die or be seriously injured than those weighing less than nine stones.

In this respect,my doctor tells me that there is nothing wrong with my weight,except that I should be more than seven foot tall.

Just as one presumes the road fatalities for the obese must be related to lack of mobility combined with the increased ton age of foward velocity, the plain truth begins to emerge.

The RAC Foundation has now called for a different shape of crash test dummy.

AS A daily Merseyrail commuter -and well- known grumbler about the old Arriva regime -may I give public recognition to the already noticeable improvement of service and conditions under new operators NedRail.

One senses the whiff of returning civilisation.
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Title Annotation:Comment
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Aug 9, 2003
Words:470
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