On shamed entertainers

I have a confession to make - somewhere in my dusty collection of old 45rpm records is a single by Rolf Harris.

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Let me say straight away that, from a purely musical point of view, I have a defence. I didn't actually buy Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport, someone gave it to me when I was very young and knew no better.

You know the script, 'it wisnae' me, a big boy did it and ran away'.

Anyway while I'm going through the whole conscious-salving thing, there is one more 'sin' I have to 'fess up to.

I once went to a Gary Glitter concert. I know, what was I thinking about? I'm beating myself up as I write this.

Glitter's performance was more comedy show than musical event. To be blunt, he was dreadful.

My only encounter with Jimmy Savile was when I phoned him for a news story about his role as Chieftain of a Highland Games.

In our short telephone chat he came across as very personable.

These men once wielded massive influence and popularity. The entertainment world of the 1960s was dominated by them and many others who revelled in the celebrity culture of the time.

Let's not forget that, in the days of Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, messrs Glitter and Harris were enjoying spells at number one.

But when's the last time you turned on the radio and heard I'm the Leader of the Gang or Hello, Hello, I'm Back Again? You don't. They are banned from most stations on the airwaves.

Harris will go the same way. Two Little Boys and his other hits will simply not be played.

Already this week ITV has been forced to apologise for screening a repeat episode of the soap opera Benidorm that mentioned Harris by name.

Those of us who thought their offerings were awful in the first place won't mourn.

But it is absolutely right that the victims of these men should be spared the ordeal of hearing and seeing them on their radios and televisions.

Anyone who occasionally watches TOTP2 will notice old editions hosted by Savile are never now broadcast.

So what of people who say how great a pity it is that part of their childhood has gone?

As if, in a bizarre way, the discovery that men who sang songs and presented TV shows during their youth - and are now unmasked as sexual predators - has somehow left them with a feeling of emptiness.

My response would be 'think of the victims'.

I hope I never hear or see any of these men again. Yes they may have played a big part in our young lives but why would we want to remember paedophiles and sex abusers.

They should be consigned to the dustbin of history and forgotten about.

As for that old single, I think I'll ditch that too.

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