Nigella does not deserve to be condemned over drugs

POOR Nigella Lawson - this week's admissions of drug taking are likely to prove both costly and damaging.

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Nigella Lawson gave evidence at trial of former staff
Nigella Lawson gave evidence at trial of former staff

It remains a deeply unedifying spectacle, when two people who were so close decide to turn their guns on each other.

In a scene reminiscent of the Chris Huhne family episode of self destruction, so Nigella Lawson and Charles Saatchi appear determined to follow a similar path.

The decision to report two staff accused of fraudulently obtaining £685,000 on the family's credit cards must, at first, have seemed so sensible.

On reflection, I am sure both parties would gladly sacrifice many more times that amount to prevent the family laundry being aired in public, with all of the damage it will bring.

In a pantomime season that could use a little spice, the beautiful Nigella, 53, worth some £10million, admits to using both cocaine and cannabis, yet she remains the Cinderella figure.

Charles Saatchi, 70, worth more than £100million, the cad who so publicly grabbed her by the throat, is most certainly not, Prince Charming.

It is doubtful that few, if any, red blooded males, will suddenly find Nigella Lawson less attractive.

Indeed, with a newly earned credibility in the consumption of recreational drugs, many will find her even more appealing.

Her career in the UK, as a celebrity chef and author, is unlikely to be seriously affected.

In the US however, where her star has just begun to rise, they will not be so forgiving.

The Nigella Lawson/ Charles Saatchi episode is, for them, most regrettable.

When sequences of events, such as this,

are set in train, they

are almost impossible

to halt.

Couples who love in private, should avoid rowing in public.

It is pointless, futile, it damages both parties and the only beneficiaries are the lawyers who will do their best to extend both the process and their profits, and a media, hungry for the scraps of a well prepared dish, even when served cold.

Nigella Lawson has a forlorn look, a lonely figure, unlucky in love, now falling from grace.

Yet, there remains great beauty, great talent.

She will survive this low point in her life and hopefully, in the future she will find true love and happiness.

In the meantime, she deserves neither our condemnation nor our approval, just our understanding that few of us are perfect and the reality that all of us have cause to regret.

Although next time she is baking, with hands covered in flour, and briefly wipes her nose, a small trace of white powder left behind, well,

it will probably be

baking soda.

AS THE death toll from the Clutha Vaults rose, it was heart rending to hear the families of those who were waiting for news of loved ones, tell of their agony in not knowing.

In learning lessons for the future, it is important that we also focus upon the communication with the families involved, ensuring that they have the best possible information, as quickly as possible.

It is also important that the investigations into events at the Clutha Vaults are concluded and shared as quickly as possible.

I have been involved with many disasters and many inquiries.

In my opinion, they take far too long - too long to learn lessons, and too long for the families to be comforted with the truth.

We allow the needs of the families to be placed below the needs of the judicial system, a system that can take five or six years to process such

an inquiry.

It is simply not good enough. The red tape and bureaucracy of the legal system must be reduced to ensure that lessons are learned and society protected.

In conveying our most sincere condolences to those involved and to all those that they have left behind, I would take the view that we owe them, at least that.

I NOTICE the UK Snooker Championships are currently being screened on the BBC.

It reminded me of a rich heritage of Scottish sporting success, as Stephen Hendry and John Higgins were crowned World Champions.

Or, those heady days when Jocky Wilson and Les Wallace aspired to become World Darts Champions.

And who can forget where they were, when Gary Crane and Peter Greenhill became World Champions - in dominoes.

With the Commonwealth Games beckoning, who needs fitness and fresh air, when we can lie on the sofa and watch these icons of the pub game, starve themselves of natural light, in pursuit of true, sporting greatness.

What a wonderful example to give the next generation of Scottish athletes and it certainly marks us out, as a nation committed to sporting excellence.

How many other major sports can you play in a bow tie?

So well done BBC, a fabulous and insightful broadcasting coup, meanwhile, I'm off for a deep fried pizza supper.


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