Now, before anyone starts accusing me of anti-doctor-ism, I should say this: some of my closest friends are doctors. Hell, quite a few of my family are.
So, there’s the fig leaf I’ll hide behind while I say this: some doctors do get quoted talking a lot of shite, don’t they?
Anytime there’s a campaign to introduce more state intrusion into our lives, there’s a BMA spokesman saying “it’s for the children”; anytime someone wants to decide what I should eat, there’s a generic consultant saying that, if only we’d restrict our diet to muesli and berries, nobody would die ever; and whenever anything comes along that looks like fun, there’ll be someone from A&E denouncing it as the end of civilization.
It is, of course, not that doctors have a higher percentage of nutjobs than any other percentage. It’s just that we (as society) have raised the status of doctors immensely. Then, once a year or so, we tend to try and bring them down with complaints about god complexes.
The upshot is simple: when a doctor, in their official capacity, says something a tad silly, it is taken much more seriously than if plain ol’ you or me said it.
Example: this story:
An accident and emergency consultant has warned of the dangers of the kids’ footwear craze Heelys.
Almost a dozen children have turned up with injuries at a Belfast hospital after falling while using the trainers, which have wheels in the heel.
(This is probably the same message that was put out about skateboards when they first arrived, and trampolines, rollerblades, roller skates, bicycles, bipedal motion and probably crawling; anyway, 12 injuries out of a population of half a million that use Belfast hospitals isn’t an awful lot)
This was front page news on the BBC. Whereas my offical position (as stated on many occasions, just not on the blog) has received exactly no coverage.
For the sake of completeness, I should probably lay out my position on said devices:
If people want to go about looking like tossers and falling over a lot, why the hell shouldn’t they. But be warned, once I’m Supreme Overlord there will be changes. Namely I will have a remote control that will lock the wheels of any set of Heelys I want to stop. Quick stop and a sudden drop, that’s what’ll happen if any more of you feckers try to know me down again…
There may have been drink taken when this position was first formulated, but I’m not sure…