In the hurly burly of the House of Commons, a sense of humour is vital. It is as well not to be too sensitive to jibes and insults, and vital to give as good as you get. Ann Widdecombe, herself no stranger to vicious jibes, always showed outstanding humour and courage in handling such situations. Any reasonable person though would feel that Nadine Dorries was treated pretty dreadfully by our Prime Minister and many MPs as she put forward her abortion amendment to the Health and Care Social Bill.
Whether or not you agree with her, Mrs. Dorries has been most unpleasantly abused. She has been called mad and her family has been threatened. It is therefore understandable if her sense of humour was in short supply. When George Osborne and William Hague laughed at her, it left a nasty taste and Mrs. Dorries walked out. Mrs. Dorries’ speech was too long and she rambled a little, but she did not deserve the contemptuous treatment she received from the House. Several female bloggers have written in support of Mrs. Dorries, notably Walaa Idris and Catey Maxx. The Guardian’s Madeleine Bunting also had plenty to say.
Mr. Cameron’s famed good manners were lacking on this occasion. Mrs. Dorries’ remark that he should show the Lib Dems who was boss obviously flicked him on the raw, and his worst side came to the fore. Mr. Cameron must know that Mrs. Dorries’ opinion is widely held. Mrs. Dorries has shown courage and deserves credit for fighting for what she believes in. It is a shame, as blogger Walaa Idris has said, that we still have not learnt how to disagree with courtesy.