Top of the Rock of Gibraltar by RedCoat is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic

It’s no secret that the quality of local daily journalism is poor, from the constant typos, to the stories that have been found online to then be cut and pasted to look like original pieces. The standard of content is poor.

For example the Panorama have already dated one of their August issues “Monday 7 September 2017”, only the month early.

I will start with a personal gripe with the Chronicle, when I was 18 or 19, I sent a series of small pieces to them to ask for a professional opinion. They weren’t sent to be published, just for an opinion on where they could be improved, if there was something I was missing, or just some advice to improve my output. I remember receiving a generic email saying they were busy, but would respond in due course, eventually I gave up.

I didn’t take it personally, I just assumed they were either too busy, or were disinterested. Either could have been true. No matter. I forgot about it, not to bother asking again.

It was months that went by before I met up with a friend, to then be told by them that their mother had seen my work printed in the Chronicle months earlier.

It goes without saying that I’ve still not seen it. I don’t even know what it was of what I’d sent them that was printed. I wasn’t given the consideration of an email asking for my consent to go to print, or even more frustrating, the consideration to let me know to look out for it.

It’s great to be in print, but if someone hadn’t of recognised my name then I’d never of known.

I don’t mention this story to appeal for sympathy, I mention because it shows how detached local publishing is from the general public.

And this couldn’t be more apparent than in an opinion piece published in the Panorama, on Monday 7 August, or September, depending if you go by the inlay or the cover. Written by Armando Lagrande, as part of “The Armando Legrande Column”, titled “Women going about half-naked”.

A ludicrous title in itself, with headline imagery of young girls in a variety of different clothes, which I can only assume Armando deems as provocative.

I’d just like to point out that I use the word “girls” and not “women”, as some of the girls shown in the image don’t look much older than 16. Just from the title and the image, it’s anyone’s guess where this article is going. My natural assumption would be it’s a backdated opinion on how the youth of today dresses. I’d be off the mark, not just marginally off the mark, but miles off the mark.

“So, they are going to pass a law to make breastfeeding in public legal. What next?”

Who knows Armando, same sex marriage? Burka’s being worn in public? Have you left your house in the last 15 to 20 years?

I say this not to poke fun, but because of how dangerous, and backdated this kind of “opinion” is, and how embarrassing it was that nobody in the Panorama took action before it was allowed to go to print. It almost seems like it was published with the sole purpose of promoting animosity. The same kind of hate fuelled opinion that kept Katie Hopkins on the payroll at the Daily Mail, or Kelvin Mckenzie in The Sun. Solely there to promote angst.

I am going to include word for word the entirety of this article to show just how farcical this mans opinion is.

“It may be natural to breast-feed when required, and I wish women well, but are we not imposing certain laws on this society prematurely?
I suppose you don’t need a law to go about almost half-naked, as is the norm nowadays in the name of keeping up with fashion.
Why should fashion dictate what we wear, anyway. Women or men, those who think out the next fashion line are thinking of filling their pockets, because that is their role in life.
And the more people who follow fashion without question, are not helping themselves or the norms of society but helping those in the fashion industry. Don’t you agree?
Suddenly; women are expected to wear mini-skirts, and when that has gone beyond the money-making line, along comes some fashion guru and dictates that women wear long skirts. Or anything else, it depends what is on their mind.
That is how the trend goes.
And most women follow the trend as otherwise they think there is something wrong with them if they are different from the rest.
Oh dear. Right now they have decided that women should show as much of their body as possible, to the point of going about half-naked.
What next?
If breast-feeding in public is to be made legal, how long will it be for the exhibiting by women of their breasts at all time being commonplace.
Will they leave anything to the imagination?
I suppose we could end up as one of those nude resorts. Gibraltar as one, big nude place.
This may seem to be far-fetched, but who could have imagined that women are already walking around half-naked?
And since the fashion world appears to be dominated by men, it is men who are undressing the women – and in public as the accepted norm.
Men, of course, remain all dressed up. Just as well…”

This complete and utter garbage journalism reads like the ramblings of a complete lunatic. Where no point is actually made.

Is he trying to empower women by telling them they can dress how they like and not to be sold falsehoods by corporate marketing?

Is he questioning their ability to make decisions for themselves by telling them that men pick what they wear to satisfy their own desires?

What is clear, is this opinion can be dismissed as absolute drivel. Fueled with vile and disgusting comparisons such as, “If breast-feeding in public is to be made legal, how long will it be for the exhibiting by women of their breasts at all time being commonplace.”

Armando clearly doesn’t have a working knowledge of the physical, and psychological traumas that mothers endure not just during the pregnancy, or during labour, but in recovery. Perhaps Arnando, and his 1950s opinions, haven’t read up on topics such as post natal depression, body shaming, feelings of inadequacy.

As most people will already know, breast-feeding not only provides food and nutrients to a developing baby, but it can help to create a bond between mother and child. Mothers, first time, or otherwise can struggle with creating bonds with their newborn children at their early stages, especially if they have gone through a traumatic experience. Breast-feeding can help them developing a connection that they are struggling to achieve, and they should be allowed to do so in a situation where they feel comfortable and relaxed.

Being shamed into toilet cubicles because of fools opinions will not help with something that is a very serious subject, and it is not an opinion that should be being printed by any publication with ethics.

Pre-historic views such as this are regressive, and damaging.

If people share Armando’s opinion, or opinions of a similar nature, then the advice of the modern day is that we’ve moved on, stay inside and drop your blinds, you’re no longer of relevance. Or if you do choose to leave the house and find yourself offended by a woman breastfeeding, or any other scenario which you consider taboo, then turn your head. It’s not a public display and offence to the uneducated, it’s a moment of privacy with family.