Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Sufferers Take Offence at `Daft'

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Sufferers Take Offence at `Daft'

Article excerpt

The ups and downs in both the career and life of Paul Gascoigne have been well-documented.

The Dunston lad who rose to be England's best-known footballer has had more than his fair share of problems to go alongside his fame and fortune.

We revealed how a new television programme claimed it was suspected Gazza was suffering from the classic signs of psychological problems. We headlined the story with the now-famous phrase used by Sir Bobby Robson during his time as England manager describing Gazza as "daft as a brush".

This prompted a reply from a handful of readers, whose feelings were summed up in a letter from one correspondent, who wished to remain anonymous:

"Re your headline `Gazza's Daft as a Brush'.

"I very much take exception to this. Does this mean my grandson, who suffers from ADD, comes into this category? "I am sure many parents/grandparents will be horrified with this assumption. "Children can be very cruel so a child suffering from ADD will be prone to abuse from a less sensitive child - yet another burden to bear."

Apologies if anyone was offended by the headline; there was absolutely no intention to do this. The phrase has been regularly used as a term of endearment both generally and to Gazza in particular.

We certainly do not underestimate the problems faced by people, and particularly children, with attention deficiencies.

RICH praise came from Frank Lumsden after he featured in the Chron recently.

Mr Lumsden, from Pelton, Co Durham, wrote: "May I thank Julie Cush for the excellent article in Body and Soul.

"I am very proud to have been part of such a well thought-out and presented report on cardiomyopathy. All too often this condition is misrepresented but Julie's feature will, I hope, have the desired effect in two quarters.

"Firstly, people who are diagnosed need not worry too much with medication and, with correct advice, you can lead a normal life.

"Secondly, it will hopefully prompt the Government to give finance so youngsters can be routinely tested for this hereditary problem. Early diagnosis would lead to the correct advice being given. …

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