Friday, February 6
We are avid watchers of Cbeebies in our house, my favourite shows being Charlie and Lola, and The Koala Brothers, the one I really cant stand is Me Too! Anyway the Cbeebies presenters are a fixture in our lives and the children all feel they sort of know them in a familiar kind of way. So we were all flabbergasted when our 2 favourites, Chris and Pui, were replaced by 2 new presenters this week.... and no one told us it was going to happen. But people move on and they have new presenters, and you know what..... one of them has a disability! My husband was watching and shouted hey come and look at this, and yes there was a disabled person on Cbeebies much to my astonishment. Seems the new female presenter has the lower half of her right arm missing and actually makes no attempt to hide it either. My son was nonplussed about the whole thing, he actually find disability interesting but a normal part of life so didn't really see why we were pointing it out to him.
Sadly if you take a look at the Cbeebies message board, even in the 21st century, a lot of parents are not so pleased at the choice, one parent complains that they 'don't want their 3 year old seeing things like that', and another complains of the BBC being 'too PC.' Now let me just think a second, forgive me if I'm wrong, but we have black presenters, gay presenters, old and young presenters, presenters of all religions, Irish presenters, but scratch my head and funnily enough I cant think of a glut of obviously disabled people on TV. Unless its a specialist programme of someone being plucky and courageous then there doesn't seem to be a great disabled presence on the box. So is this the last taboo, do we still have a problem with disability and if so why?