You may have read recently that a British immigration officer decided to get rid of his wife by covertly placing her on a ‘no fly’ list while she was outside the country. It worries me greatly that this was possible (not to say that it particularly surprises me, however). It provides further proof that Jacqui Smith, who created the department in question, was one of the worst things to happen to British human rights in a very long time. It sickens me that the officer appears to have emerged from this without any kind of criminal proceedings.
For the moment, though, I will leave all of those issues to one side. What really, genuinely shocks me is the tone set by the news coverage; look at Reuters’ take on the issue:
If you thought breaking up with someone via text message was harsh, wait until you hear about this.
Or perhaps Time’s incisive opening:
Sometimes marriage gets a bad rap. But it’s another thing completely to prevent your wife from ever coming home. Avoidance issues, anyone?
Yes, I’m quoting selectively, but honestly those excerpts pretty much embody the attitude of the articles. No righteous indignation, no calls for justice, no questioning of how a single officer could exile an innocent woman for three years with no recourse nor even an indication of why she was not allowed home. Just a light chuckle from the press about the perils of marriage, and the whimsical lengths that these silly 1950s-stereotype men will go to in order to avoid their wives. This is the best we can get from an industry that makes its money by telling us that rapist-paedophile-communist-bankers are waiting around every corner to strike at our children?