The 2m rule, Joe Wicks, and Madeleine McCann

There is currently a 2m rule in the UK as part of social distancing which requires us all to stay 2m apart from others. Apparently there’s evidence that transmission rates are lower at 2m when compared with 1m.

However, something I have noticed about this is that when you talk to someone from 2m away as opposed to 1m you have to raise your voice which increases the velocity of any spit coming out of your month as you talk. This is especially so if you’re outside and there’s a lot of background noise. You practically have to shout at each other. Given the problems choirs around the world have been having due to the projectile nature of singing is it possible that any benefits gained from standing far apart are lost when we have to shout at one another to be heard? I hope they change the 2m rule to 1m before too long.

We’ve just had our last full week of Joe Wicks. He’s been the nation’s PE teacher since the lockdown began in March but now that things are opening up again he’s scaling down to just Mondays and Wednesdays but also adding in a Saturday family class. All four of us have been doing the classes Monday – Friday together. We don’t always do them live because sometimes the kids have lessons at 9am but we do it on the day whenever we’re all free. It has been terrific and I’m definitely stronger as a result. Ben began the lockdown with a chronic knee problem and that has now completely gone away. We can still do the recordings on a daily basis and I’m sure we will.

A new suspect has been indentified in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in 2007. He’s a German national currently in jail for a drug offence. He was also convicted of the rape of a 72-year-old American woman. If you look at his timeline it’s hard to understand why he wasn’t a suspect a decade ago. The Portuguese police, even today, seem to spend all their time trying to pin the blame on Madeleine’s parents that they failed to notice a known pedophile right under their nose. It is too early to know for sure whether this man is responsible but if it turns out that he is then and had justice been served all that time ago he may have been prevented from doing more harm. He is being investigated in connetion to other disappearances including a child in Germany in 2015.

My theory as to why the Portugeuese have focused so intently on Madeleine’s parents is because they didn’t want it to affect tourism to the region. A pedophile breaking into holiday apartments and stealing children is not a good look for a tourist resort. In 2007 I had just had Daniel and was profoundly distressed by Madeleine McCann’s disappearance. I certainly would have avoided such a destination if it had been an option for a holiday. The subsequent trolling and abuse that Madeleine’s parents have received over the years is unforgiveable and something I have never understood. If a someone is eventually convicted for this tragedy then it will be largely thanks to them and their persistence. Putting a known pedophile behind bars benefits everyone in society, not just the parents of the missing children.

There was a similar tragedy in Australia in 1980. I was just a child at the time but remember it vividly. A mother, Lindy Chamberlain, was holidaying at Uluru (then known as Ayers Rock) when a dingo took her 9-week-old baby. Lindy Chamberlain was convicted in 1982 of murdering her baby and spent 4 years in prison before being pardoned in 1987 when new evidence was found. People in Australia were similarly hostile towards Chamberlain in a way I have never understood. I think people would rather blame the parent because then they know it won’t happen to their child. If it’s an outside party they can’t control then it’s a tragedy that could also happen to them. It could happen to anyone. And that’s too frightening for some people to contemplate.

13 thoughts on “The 2m rule, Joe Wicks, and Madeleine McCann

  1. As I drive I put my window up in the car each time another car passes or keep it up in busy roads. With the gentle breeze from one to another, how do we keep from the virus in a queue? More questions than answers.

      1. Even longer to get over the memory of it. As the Summer Solstice is in my mind, I wondered about the history of the stone circles. As the climate was so much more warmer back then, so many must have gathered, I wonder if it was a breeding ground for diseases. Perhaps the humans were intellegent enough to realise this, hence the abandonment of such gatherings. We might never know, but only imagine.

  2. I remember the Lindy Chamberlain case. I went to Australia for a bit of OE as many Kiwis did back then, and the incident was all over the news at that time. The media slayed Lindy, and I’m ashamed to say that I and my flatmates all bought into it, and believed she was guilty. We didn’t have internet then, and found other opinions outside of the news hard to come by. Plus, I think we were still in the mode of trusting the news, especially we Kiwis. I have since found that the Australian Press can be horrific, and also remember how shabbily they treated Julia Gillard. Between them and the absolutely atrocious behaviour from the Opposition when Julia was Prime Minister (way beyond what Opposition normally does), I don’t know how she survived with her dignity and sanity intact. But she did, and is still a strong woman today. She has a podcast called A Podcast of One’s Own.

  3. I was living in Portugal when the Madeleine McCann case happened, and I do agree that in Portugal there was a bias (and still goes on) against her parents.

    I think it’s mainly down to cultural and parenting differences between UK and Portugal. After living in the UK for some years, I think parents, in general, are not as emotional with kids in the UK. I remember the parents kept an image of calm on their interviews at the time, people in Portugal thought they were cold and they had something to hide. They were expecting big drama everyone crying and similar reactions.

    Another thing that didn’t help them was their own admission to leave the kids alone in the hotel bedroom while having dinner, the majority of parents in Portugal will never do that and it was seen has parents who didn’t care about their kids.

    I just hope they find whoever is guilty and what happened to give some closure to the parents after so many horrible years.

    1. On the issue of not crying in interviews – I believe someone (an advisor or expert of sorts) advised them not to cry because they felt it would be what the abductor wanted. He would want to see them suffer and they’d be playing into his hands. So the decision not to cry was a deliberate strategy although it doesn’t seem like it was effective in any way.

      On the issue of leaving the children alone their apartment that is also something I would never do but it doesn’t make them guilty of murder and a dislike of the parents should not take the focus off the needs of a child who had been abducted and must be found. The child should have come first as they are an innnocent party here. Just because the parents did something that other parents wouldn’t do it doesn’t mean the child should suffer.

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