Articles: mydaily

The great adoption debate – should race matter?, 11 October 2011
There are prospective parents who say they have been turned down on the basis of race. They get disproportionate media coverage, but are likely to be rare cases. Even officials admit that the evidence for this problem is anecdotal.

MyDaily Debate: Do we need another Westfield?, 24 September 2011
“Isn’t it depressing that we no longer seem able to conceive of urban regeneration without it involving a shopping mall? Unlike the traditional high street, these are private spaces where only a certain kind of people are welcome…”

MyDaily Debate: City bonuses are back: will the banks never pay?, 15 September 2011
“Not one of the bosses who failed to stop their employees gambling with our money has paid any real price: no prison for them, only tidy pension pots and plum advisory jobs…”

Ten years on, we are still blaming the wrong people, 11 September 2011
“Ten years on, the togetherness that those of us around the world witnessed in New York in the immediate aftermath of the attacks looks to have been squandered…”

Wedded bliss? Why divorce insurance is all wrong, 9 September 2011
“Insuring yourself against the potential future breakdown of your most intimate relationship just seems, well, horrifyingly practical…”

“Ladies”: why do adverts treat women like morons?, 18 August 2011
“While women’s adverts seek to exploit our insecurities, men’s ads are all about having more of what you like: another beer, a faster car, a nice big plate of chips…”

Generation riot: “feral” or justifiably furious?, 11 August 2011
“It’s difficult for people whose main hardship is having to cut short a Tuscan holiday to understand where this explosion of anger might have come from. But if we don’t at least try to understand, what’s to stop it happening again?”

Another famine in Africa: is aid the answer?, 4 August 2011
“It’s very hard to put ourselves in the position of those who suffer. But to lose a child or a parent is no less painful because it is happening all around. And to leave one’s home to depend on handouts is no less humiliating because it’s the only way to survive.”

Budget smudget: why do we keep falling for “low-cost” airlines?, 27 July 2011
“Every year I pledge never, ever, ever to fly with a so-called low-cost airline again. And every summer I find myself, like a hopeful sheep, queuing yet again in some out-of-the-way airport I have paid far too much money to get to…”

The News of the World is no more…so what’s next?, 12 July 2011
“What made these politicians – the same ones who were only too happy even a month ago to take News International’s “a few bad apples” assurances – finally find their balls?”

Oi, housewife! Call yourself a feminist?, 6 July 2011
“The problem is that in seeking freedom from childcare, feminist arguments have undermined, and even implicitly devalued, those women who stay home with their children. “Housewife” has become a dirty word amongst young professional women…”

Should women who take drugs in pregnancy face murder charges?, 29 June 2011
“What on earth do prosecutors aim to achieve by prosecuting these women for murder? They can’t seriously believe that the threat of prosecution will act as a behaviour-changer to women with drug habits or other serious problems.”

Is it ever okay to cry at work?, 23 June 2011
“Many was the day when one or other of us would scuttle teary-eyed from our desk in a none-too-subtle attempt to hold our breakdown in “private”, only to be joined some minutes later by at least one colleague bearing hugs, words of reassurance and bog roll.”

It’s not only men who beat up their partners, 14 June 2011
“…there’s no reason why the dynamics of a relationship cannot be so skewed that even a seemingly physically stronger man cannot be seriously injured by his physically weaker wife or girlfriend. By then he may have been so emotionally beaten down that taking an actual beating doesn’t seem so extraordinary.”

Delicious but deadly: why cosmetics might be bad for your health, 24 May 2011
“…there are lots of ingredients in the stuff we use on our faces, bodies and hair that are not at all good for our health. These include, believe it or not, lead, mercury, formaldehyde, arsenic and myriad other chemicals with complicated names that have been linked with cancer, reproductive problems and allergies. How can this be?”

The rich are getting richer…but does it really matter?, 17 May 2011
“…experience has shown that higher pay at the top doesn’t necessarily mean better performance. Even where this much-vaunted talent and expertise is missing, even where, in fact, company performance is poor or company behaviour actively undermines economic growth, the top bods still make sure they come out with full pockets.”

Will police be brought to book over death of Ian Tomlinson?, 10 May 2011
“…Were PC Simon Harwood a member of the public and not an officer of the law, it is highly unlikely that he would not already have faced criminal proceedings in relation to Tomlinson’s death…”

Yes, it’s boring – but our voting system matters,, 3 May 2011
“…There is something happening this week that is even more exciting and important than the union of an exceedingly posh to another not-quite-so-posh person. Yes, you guessed it, it’s the national referendum on our voting system…”

Sadly, babies die – so why the secrecy around stillbirth?, 15 April 2011
“…The fact is that even with our highly developed health system, stillbirth is a risk for healthy women with normal pregnancies – and even more so for those who are overweight, smoke or are older than average. So why does nobody talk about it?”

Domestic violence: why women’s lives are even more at risk,, 7 April 2011
“…Women’s Aid estimates that 70,000 women and their children will be left without support… This is a tragedy for those who need help and can’t get it: it is no exaggeration to say that women’s lives will be put at risk…”

It’s time for mothers to stop competing,, 30 March 2011
…Friends who stay at home full-time say it’s mainly other women who look down on them…Others who work resent the term “full-time mum” and its implication that doing paid work means you are any less “full-time” than any other mother…”

Why I’ll be marching against government cuts on Saturday,, 23 March 2011
“…I’ll be pleased to be able to do something about it instead of just moaning to my friends and worrying about what state this country will be in by the time my daughter goes to secondary school…”

Leona Lewis: the most influential London woman in 100 years?, 9 March 2011
“…Still, it is slightly depressing to see how quickly we forget our heroines. The ones who truly changed our lives rather than those who gave us something to shout at on television on a Saturday night – or lessons in what not to wear…”

Tulips, birds and shopping: why Spring is the best,, 1 March 2011
“…If buds can sprout from bare tree branches and bright spring bulbs from the still-chilly ground then surely anything is possible? Even the air smells different…”

Social networking: Is virtual “fun” replacing actual fun?, 22 February 2011
“…These kids were so focused on how to make “us in Starbucks” look fun to their Facebook friends that they were forgetting to actually have fun while actually in Starbucks with their actual friends…”

This brave new Arab world should inspire us all,, 17 February 2011
“…Young people, many of whom are too young to remember life before the autocratic regimes that rule their countries, have spearheaded a wave of protest from Morocco in the west to Yemen in the east…”

Review: the Covent Garden Hotel Valentine’s Day Film Club,, 10 February 2011

Why Cameron is wrong about multiculturalism,, 8 February 2011
“…As somebody whose mother comes from the Caribbean, such calls always make me wonder how exactly we are supposed “embrace British values”. Carry an “I love the Queen” banner around Tesco’s? Make our children recite Shakespeare at the school gates? Serve dinner with buttered bread and milky tea when friends come a-calling…?”

Why the “Big Society” is a big con,, 31 January 2011
“…The coalition would also have us believe that there are millionaire philanthropists and would-be volunteers lurking around every corner just desperate to help run everything from schools and hospitals to public access to Britain’s historic forests…”

Sky was right to suspend sexist football pundits, 25 January 2011
“…It hardly comes as a surprise that there are good old-fashioned sexists in the beautiful game: just look at the relative profile given to men’s and women’s football…”

Do we secretly want to be Betty Draper?, 17 January 2011
“…Until we find a way of financially compensating women for looking after children we shouldn’t be surprised when surveys reveal opinions that we thought died out with the polka-dot pinafore and cupcake stand…”

X-Factor: it’s so 2010, 3 January 2011
“…If I hear one more wannabe popsickle tell Dermot that it’s “amazing” to be here and that they’re “just so grateful to the public” I think I might have to gouge my eye out with a chopstick…”

Is Kenneth Clarke right to call for changes to the prison system?, 15 December 2010
“…Those who work in the field talk about the capacity for restorative approaches to tackle the emotional pain on both sides, a level of complexity that rarely gets aired in an adversarial legal system – and to confront the offender with the real personal consequences of their actions…”

Gorgeous gifts in a worthwhile cause,, 14 December 2010
Tanzania-based Shanga sells jewellery, ornaments and glasswear to clients around the world – all made by the 34 deaf and blind people employed by her company, Shanga.

Should the billionaire Topshop owner be allowed to avoid tax?, 8 December 2010
“…The sight of a group of people demonstrating against tax avoidance – And in a fashion store! With slogan T-shirts! – was a gratifying one in an era when preaching tax cuts has become acceptable for politicians of all hues…”

Should we pay grandparents to look after our children?, 1 December 2010
“…Now that we are living longer, many grandparents – let’s face it, mainly grandmothers – are not only juggling paid employment and helping out with childcare, but also caring for elderly parents…”

Race and policing: are we any better than the States?, 25 November 2010
“…Before we reassure ourselves that all of this is a long way from home, it is worth remembering that deaths of black people (and others regarded as “police property”) in the custody of the police are hardly unheard of on this side of the pond…”

Should McDonalds and PepsiCo be helping to write government health policy? November 2010
“…Slightly bleary eyed from the night before and distracted by my daughter throwing “little trees” of broccoli on the floor, I read it again to make sure I hadn’t stumbled across a script from The Thick of It or some other political satire…”

Buenos Aires: how the Argentine capital inspired one young writer,, 13 November 2010
“Foster commissioned Eloisa Cartonera to make the covers for her books, a series of 12 short stories based on the human senses and drawing on her travels from Argentina to Colombia…”

Is it okay to have a cleaner?, 3 November 2010
“…By ‘contracting out’ the cleaning responsibilities to another woman, I am aware that I am also contracting out some of the messier conflicts between my husband and myself about who should clean the toilets, vacuum the stairs and stop the dust from gathering on every surface…”

Spending cuts: Are we “all in this together”?, 25 October 2010
“…There was a while after the banking crisis when we saw clearly the damage done to our society by the unsustainable greed of an out-of-control financial sector. We should not now allow ourselves to be fooled by the government’s false platitudes…”

Crime and punishment: Do we lock up too many children?, 19 October 2010
“…Our willingness to punish rather than understand says a great deal about our society’s attitude to children and young people in general. Elsewhere in Europe, a child committing a crime is treated as a welfare issue and used to examine what is causing the child’s behaviour. By contrast, we treat children as young as ten as criminals responsible for their actions…”

Why don’t women have hobbies?, 12 October 2010
“…I know plenty of women who would be happy as Mary if they just had time to do these simple things without a mammoth to-do list running like film credits across the back of their brains…”

Is it our patriotic duty to go shopping?, 5 October 2010
“…I do not need much encouragement to go shopping. Despite, or perhaps because of this personal failing I seriously wonder about the wisdom of encouraging people to shop more. But that’s exactly what the deputy governor of the Bank of England has done…”

Do women hold the solution to global poverty?, 22 September 2010
“…When I was pregnant I lost count of the number of people who tried to reassure me about the daunting prospect of labour by saying: “It’s the most natural thing in the world – women in Africa just squat down and give birth in the fields then go right back to work”. Or similar…”

Are these Eighties-style cuts really necessary?,, 16 September 2010
“…Now, as then, the most vulnerable in our society are the first in the firing line. Anyone would think it was those on low incomes, those bringing up children alone and those looking for a job in this difficult climate who caused our enormous deficit, and not those in the highest paid echelons of the global economy…”

Where have all the male primary school teachers gone?, 9 September 2010
“…When the message “bringing up children is women’s work” is combined with “men who work with children are suspect”, is it any wonder that so few men choose to work with under-11s…?”