This week, we said goodbye to David Gest, told David Cameron to resign, criticised some comments made by Stephen Fry, and watched the Pope tweet a few questionable tweets.
Anti-austerity protesters call for the resignation of #DavidCameron #ResignDavidCameron #PanamaPapers
Last week, the Panama Papers leak led to the release of millions of documents detailing the existence of hundreds of thousands unregistered offshore companies. These accounts were being used primarily for tax evasion, fraud, and in some cases, even drug trafficking.
Following the leak, David Cameron was forced to admit that he had owned shares in his late father’s offshore fund, but that he had sold them before becoming Prime Minister. However, according to the Guardian, almost 10% of British companies avoiding tax are directly linked to Cameron’s account.
Last week anti-austerity protesters took to the streets of London to call for Cameron’s resignation – not just for his involvement in tax evasion, but for the severe cuts being made by the Tory government, his lack of compassion towards poorer members of the public, and his attempts to dismantle the welfare state.
Protesters will make themselves known again this weekend, as their march for reform continues.
— Revolution News (@NewsRevo) April 10, 2016
— Harry Leslie Smith (@Harryslaststand) April 10, 2016
— Marcus Chown (@marcuschown) April 9, 2016
— D.C. (@DarrenConnolly_) April 9, 2016
#DavidGest dies, aged 62
On Tuesday, it was reported that David Gest had been found dead in his hotel in London. The American television personality had been best known for his marriage to Liza Minnelli, his close relationship with the Jackson family, and his appearance on multiple reality TV shows in the UK.
Gest was due to begin his the David Gest is Not Dead But Alive With Soul tour this summer after false reports that he had died during his time in the Celebrity Big Brother house earlier this year. The tour is set to go ahead in July in Gest’s honour.
Sad to hear that "Uncle David" Gest has passed. Some of my favorite childhood memories are of him & my mom "Mickey" bickering like siblings.
— TJ Jackson (@tjjackson) April 13, 2016
My heart is broken this morning. News of a passing away of a dear friend David Gest. A friend for over 4 decades. I will miss him dearly.
— Deniece Williams (@NiecyOfficial) April 12, 2016
— Sinitta 19 (@sinittaofficial) April 12, 2016
Sad to hear of the passing of David Gest. A bright, funny and very kind man. RIP David.
— antanddec (@antanddec) April 13, 2016
Just when you think the world couldn't get any stranger, they announce David Gest's "David's Not Dead" tour will be going ahead as planned.
— Maïa Dunphy (@MaiaDunphy) April 14, 2016
#StephenFry tells abuse victims to “grow up”
On Monday, Stephen Fry did an interview with David Rubin for his YouTube show ‘The Rubin Report.’ It was here that he made some comments about sensitivity, trigger words like ‘rape,’ and why he thought victims of sexual abuse did not deserve any of his sympathy if they were going to pity themselves.
Fry’s comments were met with some totally warranted backlash from many, many people. Some of those people found it ironic that Fry should be so disgusted by others’ sensitivity when he, too, had made the choice to abandon Twitter due to contrasting viewpoints. But most people were simply appalled that such an influential, intelligent, generally inspirational mental health advocate could have made such cruel and uncaring comments.
I admire Stephen Fry, but his lack of understanding of, and concern for, the often far reaching impacts of child sexual abuse is appalling
— Colm O'Gorman (@Colmogorman) April 12, 2016
— Roisin Ingle (@roisiningle) April 12, 2016
Stephen Fry, which child sexual abuse victim do you think changed their mind when you told them to 'grow up'? https://t.co/x8tVAjcqzA
— Independent Voices (@IndyVoices) April 12, 2016
Stephen Fry: people need to be thicker skinned. Victims of trauma need to get over it
Stephen Fry: quits twitter when ppl disagree with him
— elliot (@langho) April 11, 2016
Stephen Fry painfully shows that intelligence and wisdom are two very different things with his comments about abuse victims
— Dominic Seawood (@dominic_seawood) April 11, 2016
Fry eventually apologised for his comments on Wednesday. In a statement on Mind.org.uk‘s website, of which Fry is President, he said that he was distressed “greatly to think that I have upset anyone in the course of the TV interview I had with David Rubin the other week.” Fry also mentioned that he recognises the true trauma of rape and abuse and that he did not mean to trivialise crimes that have affected so many people.
@Pontifex offends with tweet about people with disabilities
Pope Francis has a Twitter. Lots of people follow him because he is the Pope. Sometimes Pope Francis tweets about things like God, and the church, and Jesus, and stuff. Other times he tweets about marriage, and the family, and God, and the church, and Jesus, and stuff. It’s fine.
But every now and then Pope Francis will tweet something that’s not so fine. This week that something concerned people with disabilities. Pope Francis took to his Twitter to say that these people were “a gift for the family,” and that they helped everybody else who did not live with a disability to “grow in love, mutual aid and unity.”
People with disabilities are a gift for the family and an opportunity to grow in love, mutual aid and unity.
— Pope Francis (@Pontifex) April 9, 2016
Some people did not see anything wrong with the Pope’s comment. Others found his objectification of disabled people odd and offensive. They found it strange that someone would suggest people with disabilities exist only for the self improvement of others. They were insulted that the Pope deemed their worth only in terms of those around them.
They decided to challenge the Pope on his tweet.
— Vilissa Thompson (@VilissaThompson) April 12, 2016
@Pontifex Oh gross, Mr. Pope. My family are the ones who caused my disability. Regardless, we are not a gift; we are humans unto ourselves.
— Charlotte Issyvoo (@CIssyvoo) April 10, 2016
W/ respect, @Pontifex, disabled ppl are not sent to earth to do a special job/give particular gift via our disabilities to non-disabled ppl.
— Heather Ure (@riotheatherrr) April 9, 2016
— Naomi Barton (@shutter_j) April 9, 2016