Elaine Paige, the singer and Radio 2 presenter, has encouraged young women to “just deal with it” if a man “puts his hand on your knee or your bum”, saying life would be dreary if they are discouraged from flirting.
Paige, 70, said she had “of course” been hit on by predatory men, joking she would be “really embarrassed” if she had managed to avoid it.
But while rape and sexual assault are “completely unacceptable”, she said, other behaviour should be treated with “perspective”.
Obviously. It’s rather how the species has reproduced down the generations, a reasonably important thing for a species to do. There has to be some socially acceptable manner of “Oi, Oi? Fancy a …?”
Whether that’s “can we have a conversation about the beneficial effects of Fairtrade” or “Would you like to come up and see my etchings” there does need to be that manner of asking the question. The problem with some of the modern complaints being that even the asking, in whatever terms, is deemed to be verboeten.