Good Doctor star Hill Harper slammed for misgendering Dwyane Wade’s daughter Zaya on her 13th birthday – The Sun

FANS are outraged after The Good Doctor star Hill Harper misgendered Dwyane Wade's daughter Zaya on her 13th birthday.

Dwyane's wife Gabrielle Union shared a birthday post for her stepdaughter- who recently came out as trans- when Hill chose to call the teen “young man” in the comments.

Gabrielle posted a sweet photo of her stepdaughter on Friday, along with the note: “Happy Birthday baby!!! I can't believe you are 13!! "@zayawade you are such an inspiration and motivation to get my butt up everyday and fight.

“When I'm weary, frustrated, full of rage, I see your face and your joy and you living your best life and I want that for all of us.

The L.A.’s Finest actress added: “I love you sooooo much kid!!

"Enjoy this day and everyday knowing you are loved, protected, respected, admired and celebrated.”

Hill, 54, commented: “Happy Birthday young man!! Read Letters to a Young Brother!!!

"Your mom wrote something in it!! You’ll love it! Have a great day!!”

On top of calling Dwyane’s daughter a “young man,” Hill also used the comment as an opportunity to plug his book, a self-help guide geared toward men.

Outraged social media users called his comment to Zaya “disgusting,” “Blatantly disrespectful,” and “full of malice.”

Others couldn’t believe the Good Doctor star “had the nerve to do that under HER comment section."

Another wrote simply stated: “Yo. Hill Harper is a b***h for this.

"What’s really f***ing me up is it feels like he went out of his way to misgender her. TRASH.”

Hill stars as Dr. Marcus Andrews on ABC’s The Good Doctor, which recently aired its season 3 finale, and one fan of the series is asking the show how and “why” they could employ someone who “acts like this toward children.”

Meanwhile, Nicholas Gonzalez, whose Good Doctor character Dr. Neil Melendez was recently killed off in the finale, shared a short but sweet note to the birthday girl.

He commented on Gabrielle’s post, along with a heart emoji: “Love this, G. Happiest of Birthdays you Beauty @zayawade!”

Dwyane called Zaya “young lady" when opening up earlier this year about his daughter coming out to him.

On Good Morning America in February, the former basketball star also recalled her telling him: "I don't think I'm gay.

"This is how I identify myself. This is my gender identity.

"I identify as a young lady. I think I'm a straight trans (girl) because I like boys."

He added during the interview that “this is her life every day,” and he only wants to love and support her.

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BBC Breakfast Naga Munchetty shows off the results of DIY haircut

‘I couldn’t take it anymore’: BBC Breakfast host Naga Munchetty shows off the results of her DIY haircut as she admits ‘it’s OK, a bit messy maybe’

BBC Breakfast host Naga Munchetty revealed her DIY haircut to viewers on Thursday after saying she ‘couldn’t take it anymore.’ 

Naga, 45, showed pictures which proved her newly cropped look wasn’t the work of a hairdresser and a breach of lockdown rules.

The presenter said she took the scissors to her own hair because the government has said hairdressers will not be opening before July. 

‘I couldn’t take it anymore’: BBC Breakfast host Naga Munchetty showed off the results of her DIY haircut on the show on Thursday as she admitted ‘it’s OK, a bit messy maybe’

DIY ‘do: Naga had taken to Twitter to reveal she had taken the scissors to her own hair as her growing locks needed some attention

Co-host Charlie Stayt, 57, revealed he’d also been trimming his own hair, but viewers were amazed that immaculate Naga’s new ‘do was all her own work.

Pics were posted on Twitter and Instagram and were also aired on the programme as she explained her decision.

Naga said: ‘I couldn’t take it any more, I actually cut all my hair. My make-up friends and hairdressing friends said “what are you doing?” but I couldn’t take it.

That’s the spirit: Naga has said she had been relying on a strong wax to hold her hair in place but said that she had to take matters into her own hands as salons won’t open before July

Getting carried away: Naga tweeted that she had only meant to cut the sides of her hair but ended up doing the whole thing 

There for her: She said last week that her husband had been giving her a helping hand with the scissors 

‘It has been done and I think I did OK. It is neat, there are no chunks out of it, it is OK, a bit messy maybe.’

Weatherman Matt Taylor joked to Charlie Stayt: ‘Are you going to tell her about that gap at the back Charlie?’

Yesterday Naga posted on Twitter: ‘I couldn’t stop myself. I was only meant to trim the sides! I couldn’t bear the curly bits misbehaving any more. Ho hum.’

Immaculate: Naga looked like she had been to a professional salon the results were so good 

Allie P on Twitter posted: ‘Hair looks awesome, outfit beautiful and shoes, I want them. Lovely, lovely, lovely.’

Herby Snipe said: ‘Well done, looks good and I’ve been doing that for years. As an old man it saves me a fortune.’

And Barrie Jaques posted: ‘Great job Naga, beautiful as always.’

The presenter has been hailed for her sharp dressing but last month quickly shut down a critic.

One viewer took exception to a pair of heels she was wearing.

‘I’m not known for my own sartorial elegance but why would anyone like Naga Munchetty feel the need to wear high-heeled shoes like these on a BBC TV breakfast news programme? Discuss…’ he posted.

She swiftly replied with the perfect response: ‘Because I want to.’ 

Who knew there was so much? She shared a picture of all the hair she had cut off which was piled up in the sink 

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Rich New Yorkers desperately seek tacky above-ground pools amid lockdown

Aesthetically pleasing they are not, but there’s been a run on above-ground pools this summer as the coronavirus lockdown forces people to resign themselves to staycations rather than trips to cool off at the beach or lake.

Retailers can barely keep up with demand now that most kids’ camps are canceled for safety reasons and entertainment needs to be available at home.

Many pool-supply companies have the pools on backorder while stores such as Home Depot and Target are telling customers to keep checking back until the stock becomes available again.

Contacted by The Post, an employee at Staten Island Pool & Spa said most of their pools were on backorder for between four and six weeks.

Westchester resident Jennifer Jaicks Ciardullo counts herself lucky. She managed to score a $650 15-foot by 4-foot Intex pool from Walmart after weeks of searching online.

“Everywhere was sold out, or they were advertised on Amazon for a huge markup to something like $2,000,” says the 49-year-old mom who picks up her pool Wednesday. “I can’t believe I managed to get one, but I found it by Googling like crazy one night.”

She and her husband, Alfonso, 55, bought the pool for their daughter, Amanda, 14, who is likely going to be disappointed that the camp she has attended for 10 years is closed. They hope her friends will come over and play in it.

But Ciardullo admits that the beauty of her backyard has had to be sacrificed for the “big blue monstrosity.”

“I never imagined we’d have one of these, but desperate times call for desperate measures,” says the full-time human resources worker. “My sister-in-law calls it a ‘ghetto pool’ while I call it $650 of peace and happiness filled with laughing 14- and 15-year-olds.”

As for the large patch of grass which will be destroyed by its footprint, she jokes: “Will that grass ever grow?”

Meanwhile, another mom from Westchester, who asked not to be named for privacy reasons, turned to eBay to find her family’s $1,800 Intex pool which measures 24 feet by 12 feet.

“We paid around $300 more than the recommended retail price, because I couldn’t buy it anywhere else,” she says. “We thought it was worth it for our 7-year-old twins who had a blast splashing around in it over Memorial Day weekend.”

The 35-year-old describes the look compared to an in-ground pool as “awful” but, like Ciardullo, agrees it’s a case of “needs must.”

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BTS: Jin and Jungkook Made a Surprise Cameo in Suga's Music Video for 'Daechwita'

We stan supportive band members. On May 22, Suga released his second mixtape under the persona Agust D, D-2. It’s a blink-and-you-miss-it moment, but in Suga’s new music video for “Daechwita,” the mixtape’s lead single, BTS’s Jin and Jungkook make a surprise cameo.

‘Daechwita’ is the lead single from Suga’s new mixtape

D-2 consists of 10 tracks: “Daechwita,” “Moonlight,” “What do you think?,” “Strange (feat. RM),” “28 (feat. NiiHWA),” “Burn It (feat. MAX),” “People,” “Honsool,” “Interlude : Set me free,” and “Dear my friend (feat. Kim Jong Wan of NELL).”

“Daechwita” serves as the mixtape’s lead single, and Suga released a music video as Agust D for the song. “Daechwita” combines traditional Korean military music and instruments with modern hip-hop beats, and the music video reflects that styling. In the music video, Agust D portrays two different characters. One of historic Korean royalty, and another modern character.

“The first thought I had was that I wanted to sample the music that is played during the ceremonial walk of the King, so naturally, Korean elements ended up being an essential component to the track as well as the music video,” Suga told TIME.

RELATED: BTS: Suga Surprise Drops Second Mixtape ‘D-2’ With Lead Single ‘Daechwita’

BTS fans can’t get enough of Jin and Jungkook’s appearance

To fans’ surprise and amusement, Jin and Jungkook make a cameo in the “Daechwita” music video. A minute into the video, Jin bumps into the dark-haired Agust D character and turns around, inadvertently hitting Jungkook as he walks by. Agust D keeps walking and rapping to the camera, while Jin and Jungkook begin to quarrel in the background.

“Oddly comforting knowing that in every reincarnation jinkook are together and also bickering,” a fan tweeted.


“That bangtan bomb is gonna be funny as h*ll. can’t wait to see jungkook and jin practicing how they were gonna fight and jungkook making fun of jin’s beard,” one fan tweeted.

“Yoongi rapping while jinkook throw hands in the background has to be the best thing I’ve ever witnessed,” another fan tweeted.

There was a countdown leading up to Suga’s mixtape

Before Suga released D-2 as Agust D, there was a special countdown for BTS fans on Twitter. Starting on May 17, Big Hit Entertainment posted a clue every day at midnight KST. Each hint featured a grayscale picture that became clearer every day, as well as a countdown beginning with “D-7.”

By the “D-4” hint, fans knew the countdown was for a BTS member’s solo project, and a large number of BTS fans were convinced the countdown was for another Agust D mixtape. However, most fans assumed the mixtape would drop after the countdown reached “D-1.” Instead, Suga released the mixtape after the “D-2” clue dropped, surprising fans as it came before the technical end of the countdown

RELATED: What Are BTS and Big Hit Entertainment Counting Down To?

In an interview with Billboard, Suga discussed why he released the album earlier than expected.

“I like surprises, so I came up with the release promotion myself. I didn’t want to release it on D-DAY, and also wasn’t satisfied with just Agust D 2. So I wanted to release it on D-2 to surprise the people who were waiting for it to drop on D-DAY,” he said.

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What are the top public high schools in the U.S.?

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Prepping for the right college may mean buckling down for four years from 9th to 12th grade. However, the question then becomes: Where do you go to get the best education that will prepare you for the future?

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To help, U.S. News ranked the top best public high schools in the nation. The rankings include data on more than 24,000 public high schools across the nation with nearly 18,000 schools being evaluated based on their performance on state assessments and how well they prepare students for college.


Although the highest-ranked schools are scattered throughout the country, sitting atop the coveted list is Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Virginia.



The school garnered the title due to its best-in-state performance in English and math assessments, 100 percent graduation rate and its top ranking in college readiness, U.S. News revealed.

Although Virginia lays claim to the number one spot, roughly 63 percent of high schools in the San Jose, California metro area reside in the top 25 percent of the national rankings. Meanwhile, half of the public high schools in Massachusetts also sit within the top 25 percent of the national rankings, the outlet revealed. However, the top 100 schools on the list span across 29 states, according to the report.


Here are the top ten public high schools based on U.S. News:


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Best Gas Barbecues 2020 | The Sun UK

GAS barbecues offer you control of your cooking, delivering a consistent flame that ensures your food is cooked inside as well as out.

A lot more convenient to use than charcoal barbecues, gas barbies are also more costly, so there are a few things to bear in mind before you buy.

Gas barbecues come in all shapes and sizes, with simple two burner units available alongside four or even six burner BBQs.

More power is a plus, with burner output measured in KW.

Always be wary of how much gas you have left well before the day of your BBQ party.

While you can pick up charcoal from your local off licence, for gas barbies you’ll need to pick up a refill from your local DIY outlet when you need it. A 5kg bottle will last around 15 cook-outs.

Building a BBQ is likely to be a two-person job, so get some help and be safe – propane can be lethal. Some in our round-up offer to build for around £40 extra.

What do I need to know before buying a gas barbecue?

With the summer just around the corner, it’s time to make sure you're ready for alfresco cooking by investing in a good barbecue.

Barbecue prices range from around £20 to more than £4,000, depending on the size of your chosen grill, the number of features it boasts and the quality of its construction.

Gas machines tend to be more pricey but it’s the best option for hassle free outdoor cooking.

And if you plan to use your barbie regularly, then it’s worth investing a bit more in a model that will last you longer, and comes with a lengthier warranty.

Standard grill is the most basic and widely available type of gas barbecues. It will have a grill only but it’s good enough for chargrilling typical barbecue products including meat, kebabs and veggies.

They will usually have two to four burners, although some models have as many as six (a good option if you have a large family).

Some models also have a griddle or hot plate in addition to a standard grill.

According to consumer group Which?, this feature is great for searing steaks and frying lean cuts of meat, steak or vegetables. You can even use it to fry eggs.

Other gas barbecues come with a side burner instead of a side storage shelf. This can be useful if you like to boil or steam vegetables or heat up barbecue sauces.

How much should I spend on a barbecue?

There’s usually a big price difference between options from well-known brands and barbecues available at supermarket and DIY stores.

Although price is not always an indicator of quality, products from popular brands tend to be more robust and built-in with better quality material, according to Which?.

Budget-friendly  model are usually more cheaply made and less durable, so if you're planning on using your barbecye regularly it's worth spending a bit more.

Check our selection of the best gas barbecues on the market now. Let’s get cooking.

Where to buy a barbecue?

Gas BBQs are in high-demand right now, so you have to shop around a bit to find what you want in stock.

We've listed a few retailers below for some inspiration.

  • Amazon
  • Argos
  • B&Q
  • John Lewis
  • Wayfair

If you're looking for a gas bbq on a budget, check out our roundup of the best cheap gas BBQs, instead.

1. Char-Broil Convective Series 210B

  • Char-Broil Convective Series 210B, £262 at Amazon – buy here

This Char-Broil BBQ features stainless steel burners for durability and cast iron grates for perfect sear marks.

You get a temperature gauge to ensure you're cooking at the right heat and a warming rack to keep everything ticking over inside.

2. Everdure Barbecue by Heston Blumenthal

  • Everdure by Heston Blumenthal, £599 from John Lewis – buy here

The notorious chef has created a minimalist and solid gas BBQ that does the job while looking very good.

The premium-build barbie has two high-performance burners with sensitive variable heat control allowing you to take charge.

Its high hood is ideal for convection cooking and the large cooking area means your food will be evenly cooked and delicious

A perfect fusion of form and function, you don’t need to be a culinary genius to know this is a great deal.

3. Weber Genesis II E-310 GBS BBQ

  • Weber Genesis II E-310 GBS, £949 from John Lewis – buy here

The smaller brother to the E-610, the Weber delivers stand-out grilling performance from its three performance-engineered burners.

Totally redesigned for 2019, the superb build quality is backed with a 10-year guarantee.

4. Weber Genesis II E-610 BBQ

  • Weber Genesis II E-610, £1,499 from John Lewis – buy here

Six burners all firing at once will grill enough meat for the biggest family – or football team, cooking for up to 11 people at one time.

An innovative grease management system tackles the curse of the outdoor cook – the dreaded grease, keeping your precious grill clean and fresh.

5. Ambri 480G Gas Barbecue

  • Ambri 480G Gas Barbecue, £259.99 from Wayfair – buy here

This stylish BBQ from Wayfair is loved by reviewers for its neat design and the ease that you can attach the gas cannister.

If you like your BBQs with no frills, this could be the way to go.

Find more from Sun Selects: We’re all about helping you find the best products at the best prices.

Enjoyed our roundup of the best gas barbecues? For more exciting garden product recommendations, head over to our Sun Selects Garden and tools section.

Planning a party? Here are the must-have BBQ accessories to throw the best party this summer – including a grill and a paddling pool.

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EastEnders star Maisie Smith shows off her toned midriff as she goes out in crop top and fluffy slippers in Essex

EASTENDERS' Maisie Smith this afternoon showed off her toned midriff as she stepped out in Essex in a crop top and a pair of fluffy slippers.

The actress, 18, showed of her impressive abs in a sports top as she went for a stroll in her home town.

The soap star took a break from lockdown to get some fresh air.

She wore her red hair up in a messy bun and, like most of us in self isolation, went make-up free.

Maisie was taking a break from keeping her fans entertained with her hilarious home videos.

Earlier today she had her followers in stitches with her TikTok video with her mum, where they were dancing to Britney Spears' Toxic.

Maisie had no trouble learning the energetic routine to the song, but her mum Julia found it a bit more challenging.

Maisie wrote: "Thought I’d share behind the scenes 😅 this was the only way could remember the choreo 🤣 X.X.X"

In the finished version, the glam pair shimmed side by side before throwing shapes with their arms and, in Maisie's case, expressive faces.

But in a rehearsal, dressed down Julia relied on Maisie counting the beat and talking her through.

The BBC soap star has been keeping her fans updated with her life as she lives in her parents' home in Westcliff, Essex. 

She often ropes her mum into dancing videos to keep her followers entertained.

The young actress opened up about wanting to stay in EastEnders for as long as June Brown, who has played Dot Cotton for more than 30 years.

Also, she has her heart set on landing the soap’s most iconic role, landlord of the Queen Vic pub.

She believes she shares the characteristics of two of the pub’s stalwarts — Barbara Windsor’s Peggy Mitchell and battleaxe Shirley ­Carter, played by Linda Henry.

Speaking to The Sun in April, Maisie said: “There would be a lot of pressure. All of the landlords are such iconic characters on the show and I’d have to live up to the hype.

“But I would love to give it a go and I think I’d do a good job. It’s a big aim for me. I’ve got the sass of Peggy and the roughness of Shirley. I’d be perfect.”

Maisie joined the show when she was just six years old as Tiffany Butcher, the on-screen daughter of Bianca ­Jackson and Ricky Butcher, played by Patsy Palmer and Sid Owen.

Got a story? email [email protected] or call us direct on 02077824220.

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Jodie Marsh says her mum was sent home from hospital to ‘die from cancer’ because of coronavirus – The Sun

JODIE Marsh says her mum was sent home from hospital to "die from cancer" because of coronavirus.

The former glamour model, 41, said her mum Kristina was "turfed out" from the hospital despite having "the most aggressive growing cancer her consultant had ever seen".

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

Charity Balls To Cancer – which raises awareness of cancers affecting men – tweeted: "We cannot say it enough. THE NHS IS OPEN please do not sit at home with any cancer symptoms, get to speak to your doctor or visit A & E.

"The figures in cancer diagnosis are drastically down. Please remember lives are saved by early detection! Please RT"

However, Jodie replied: "Not quite true. My mum was basically turfed out of hospital and told “come back in 8 weeks” even though she has the most aggressive growing cancer her consultant had ever seen.

"Thrown out of hospital because of Covid. No treatment. She’s dying at home. No word from hospital"

Fans flooded the comments with similar stories, with one person saying: "Sadly same happened to my mother, found out she had a brain tumour beginning of March they couldn’t get her out quick enough, she was sent home to die which sadly she did, 5 weeks from being diagnosed. Doctors terrible keeping us updated when she was in hospital."

Another added: "Jodie I'm so sorry to hear this. I've seen this so many times over the last 8 weeks and some awful situations in my job (hospice nurse and district nursing). I really hope things improve for you all. Sending best wishes x"

This comes as leading oncologist Professor Karol Sikora claimed cutbacks to cancer treatment amid the coronavirus pandemic would be a "death sentence" for many patients.

Last month he claimed that in years to come there could be an extra 50,000 deaths if the coronavirus lockdown continues to put a strain on cancer services.

Earlier this month, it was revealed urgent referrals for cancer treatment plummeted 62 per cent during the lockdown – leading officials to urge people to see their GP asap if they spot symptoms.

During a meeting for the Health and Social Care Select Committee, national cancer director for NHS England, Dame Cally Palmer said chemotherapy treatments have dropped and warned two-week referrals were down by 62 per cent.


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"We had just under 15,000 people booked for an appointment but that is a 62 per cent reduction and clearly it's very important we address that because early detection is vital for increased survival," she told MPs.

"Broadly, chemotherapy appointments are running at about 70 per cent of normal levels and the reason for that, and we think we can set them back very quickly because, of course, is they use different facilities and workforce broadly from surgery and the other resources required to respond to Covid-19", she added.

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Government's new slogan should be 'eat less, move more, live longer'

DOMINIC LAWSON: The firm words from my daughter that are just the prescription a glutton like me needs to help fight off corona

  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

My younger daughter may have Down’s syndrome but she has a firm grasp of the principles of weight loss. Last week I said to her, after getting off the scales: ‘Oh dear, I’ve put on more weight.’

Her response was instant: ‘Eat less, move more!’ And to my reply that I would try to do so, she was equally succinct: ‘Don’t just try. Do it.’

My daughter has the right to lecture me. She has qualified as a Zumba dance instructor, while I am an exercise-averse glutton — and, at almost 15 st and 5 ft 10in in height, on the Body Mass Index cusp between overweight and obese.

On the other hand, Boris Johnson, who is shorter than I am but was said to be 17 st 7 lb when he was admitted to hospital with Covid-19, is — or was at the time — definitely obese.

Boris Johnson – pictured with his fiancee, Carrie Symonds – is said to be planning a war on obesity after deciding his own touch-and-go battle with coronavirus was exacerbated by him being overweight

This has made a profound impression on the 55-year-old Prime Minister. According to the well-informed political editor of the Spectator (the magazine Johnson once edited): ‘He is convinced that the reason he ended up in intensive care was because of his weight. The Prime Minister has been heard to remark, “It’s all right for you thinnies” when discussing the disease.’

And when asked how to avoid the worst of Covid-19, he is reported to have said: ‘Don’t be a fatty in your 50s.’


However, it is best to be careful — especially if you are PM — when making medical pronouncements on the back of a purely personal experience. Is there actually a connection between dying from Covid-19 (as Boris Johnson might well have done) and obesity?

Evidence is accruing to this effect, although, since those rushed to intensive care units critically ill with Covid-19 are not weighed and measured (there are more important things to do), such information is partial and subjective.

But I’ll go along with the latest research led by Professor Norbert Stefan of the Institute of Diabetes Research and Metabolic Diseases in Munich, which concludes: ‘Preliminary data suggest that people with obesity are at increased risk from Covid-19. However, as data is scarce, increased reporting is needed to improve our understanding.’

There is certainly a common sense reason to believe that being very overweight would make survival less likely. Covid-19 is a disease which kills by attacking lung tissue — and the fatter you are, the more constricted your lungs are already, simply through force of compression. If you are chronically out of breath to start off with, that is doubly bad news.

Research led by Professor Norbert Stefan of the Institute of Diabetes Research and Metabolic Diseases in Munich suggests people with obesity are at an increased risk from coronavirus. File photo 

However, if that is part of the problem, then it is also a clue to the solution. It’s best to be as fit as possible — and that can certainly be achieved even if you are, technically, overweight.

In fact, I would say that Boris Johnson is an example of this. I know him quite well, and he always struck me as physically fit, despite his ample waistline. As London Mayor, this was achieved by cycling everywhere and never using a vehicle (even though he was entitled to a chauffeur-driven one).

Once, we met for lunch in Hammersmith: he cycled there and back from the Mayor’s office — 16 miles in total. And he didn’t seem at all out of breath when he arrived.

Despite the fact that, as Prime Minister, he has been prevented from continuing with this mode of transport (his security team would never allow it), I suspect that it was his residual fitness which helped him pull through with only a short time in intensive care.

So I was not surprised to learn that Boris Johnson is now planning to introduce measures designed to make it easier for people to use bikes for their journeys. It would indeed be better if he promoted exercise as the remedy for obesity, rather than increasing taxes — specifically, the so-called ‘sugar tax’ on fizzy drinks.

This was promulgated by George Osborne, the then Chancellor, in 2016 — chancellors always like to find new ways to tax us — though it was not introduced until a year later.

By the time the measure came into force, a number of soft drink manufacturers had pre-emptively reduced the sugar content of some of their sweetest products by as much as 30 per cent, which led supporters of the tax to declare it a public health triumph.


Only here’s the catch. Overall, the sugar consumed by us here in Britain went up and not down, according to Public Health England, by the equivalent of 0.5 per cent per person nationally.

This rather bore out the warning of a peer-reviewed article in the Journal of Public Health in 2014, entitled Why Fat Taxes Won’t Make Us Thin.

It pointed out that taxes, especially in areas where people had developed addiction, could have counterproductive effects. They would find their sugar kick somehow, even if it meant switching to other sweet products.

Since the introduction of the ‘sugar tax’, sugar consumption has increased by the equivalent of 0.5 per cent per person nationally

Or — and this is a particular problem among the least well off, who are the principal social target of this well-meant policy — they would substitute some of the now more expensive sweet foodstuffs with something no better for them: ‘For example, potato chips covered with salt.’

But Boris Johnson has always been reluctant to tell people what they should eat. When a mere backbench MP, he supported parents who were seen pushing pies through the railings of a school which had introduced ‘healthier’ food to pupils: ‘Why shouldn’t they push pies through the railings? I say let them eat what they like.’

And in his campaign for the Conservative leadership, Johnson promised a ‘review of the sugar tax’, arguing that such measures were disproportionately falling on poorer families and that the evidence that they reduced the consumption of unhealthy foods was ‘ambiguous’. He added that he wanted to see the proof that such taxes ‘actually stop people from being so fat’. Proof of that has not so far been demonstrated.

Such measures do satisfy the urge of many people to punish the unaesthetically obese. But that is not in itself sufficient justification.

It is true, however, that the necessary will-power to ‘eat less and move more’ is very hard to inculcate in a fast-food culture, where even when people do move by their own leg-power, this is only achieved while simultaneously stuffing their faces.


Not that the more socially desirable method of eating food at the table, and with family, is guaranteed to produce a healthy outcome. My great-grandfather Gustav died on the operating table because he was too fat for the surgeons to achieve what they wanted.

On the other hand, my father Nigel, mercilessly mocked for his obesity by cartoonists when he was Chancellor of the Exchequer, did manage to lose a prodigious amount of weight after leaving office (and even explained how, in The Nigel Lawson Diet Book).

More from Dominic Lawson for the Daily Mail…

Not everyone has his willpower, however. And, unlike him, I can see no future in a life without potatoes. In this, I suspect I am closer to the average Briton.

So my own recipe was not to lead a life of culinary austerity but to hire a trainer, Wendy, who bullies me into torturous exercise. I lost some weight, but not much.

On the other hand, I became much fitter, so that, as Wendy explained: ‘You can now run to catch the train to London without getting out of breath.’

Alas, with the lockdown, that exercise (both running for the train and being made to do endless push-ups by Wendy) has been suspended for two months now — with the consequence I revealed to my most unsympathetic daughter.

Probably only a minority can afford a personal trainer. But thanks to the internet, it is now possible — without fee — to follow an exercise programme while being shouted at by glowingly fit American women, much scarier than Joe Wicks (which is what my wife endures).

It may be, however, that if it is proved that the obese are particularly vulnerable to Covid-19, then the best thing for the Government to do is bombard us with advertisements along the lines of those introduced when Aids struck (‘Don’t die of ignorance’).

Something like: ‘Eat less, move more, live longer.’

My daughter would approve, anyway.

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The West Wing fans convinced show predicted coronavirus with ‘chilling’ scene about global pandemics and failed vaccines

THE West Wing fans are convinced the show predicted coronavirus with a ‘chilling’ scene about global pandemics and failed vaccines.

The hit NBC series aired from 1999 until 2006, and fans who are rewatching the show have been left freaked out by an episode from season five.

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Called The Crackpots and These Women, the episode saw the character Josh Lyman (Bradley Whitford) discuss a scenario where a deadly virus wipes out the population with CJ Cregg (Allison Janney).

Josh tells his colleague it won't be a nuclear war that will strike next, saying: "It’s not gonna be the red phone and nuclear bombs.

"It’s gonna be something like this. Smallpox has been gone for 50 years, no one has an acquired immunity, it flies through the air.

"You get it, you carry a 10ft cloud around with you. One in three people die.

"If 100 people in New York City got it you’d have to encircle them with 100 million vaccinated people to contain it.

"Do you know how many doses of smallpox vaccine exist in the country? Seven.

"If 100 people in New York City get it there’s going to be a global medical emergency that’s going to make HIV look like cold and flu season."

Viewers couldn't help but compare his words to the current coronavirus pandemic, which has seen thousands die across the globe and many countries placing its population in lockdown.

Taking to Twitter, one fan of the series wrote: "The West Wing season 1 episode 5 talks about the weaponization of viruses (in this case Smallpox). Really his home with the Coronavirus pandemic we face now."

Another added: "Decided to rewatch West Wing and got to "The Crackpots and These Women" and damn if Josh Lyman isn't talking about smallpox but sounds like Covid."

A fellow viewer tweeted: "I just watched season 1 episode 5 of The West Wing. One of the themes of the episode was Small Pox and the limited number of vaccines in our stockpile.. just thought it was ironic considering where we are today."


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