View across the Outer Harbour of Stornoway

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Thursday 23 August

Another day of mixed fortunes in the Outer Hebrides. The cruiseliner MSC Lirica came to call, discharging Spanish tourists for a whistlestop tour of the island. It left at 6pm for Gourock, about 30 miles west of Glasgow. We had sunshine and showers amidst temps of 16C. The longer term forecast posts the first autumnal gale for next Tuesday, August 28th. Meanwhile in the tropics, Isaac is having trouble pulling itself together, and Joyce is being pulled apart. I would not be surprised to find Joyce gone by morning. In the Pacific, Tembin and Bolaven are two category III typhoons. The former is about to pass over southern Taiwan, whilst the latter is powering up on approach to Okinawa. That island will see Bolaven at 120 knots, about 140 mph, in a few days' time.

A few years ago, I would blog up to a dozen posts a day, particularly on the old Northern Trip blog. Nowadays, I post all those items on Facebook and Twitter, and don't give them another thought. However, I am temporarily reverting back to old ways, by discussing a news item on the BBC - I gave my opinion on Facebook, but will expand further here.

An abuse charity is planning to burn copies of the erotic trilogy "Fifty Shades", which apparently features explicit descriptions of sexual behaviour, possibly non-consensual. When I hear of books being burns, I immediately recoil in horror. In 1930s Germany, books that were displeasing the Nazi regime were burned across the land. Fifty Shades is controversial, and I will not read it. I condemn (sexual) abuse in all its forms, and am a verbal supporter of those, like Wearside Women in Need, who will provide aid and succour to those unfortunate women who are victims of abuse. I know one or two personally. However, the charity in question defeats the object of its own exercise because by purchasing the books, they support the author and their publisher. It will also publicise the books further, prompting people to go out and read them. In a civilised society, we do NOT burn books. If there is an issue with a publication, there should be a healthy discussion. Education is a much better and more constructive option.