It hasn’t been a cracker of a year for enlightenment

CAVEMAN? Richard Keys' comments were certainly prehistoric
CAVEMAN? Richard Keys' comments were certainly prehistoric

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What do Richard Keys, David Cameron, Silvio Berlusconi and the BBC have in common?

If you’ve still got your head near the toilet bowl after a vigorous night of New Year’s Eve partying, the answer might not leap out at you.

But fear not, this isn’t a particularly bad cracker joke saved over from Christmas.

All the above are guilty of displaying some shocking attitudes towards women in 2011.

If they’ve made any resolutions for the coming year, it’s to be hoped that ‘Must try harder not to be sexist’ is at the very top of the list.

Of course, Keys embarrassed himself more than the lineswoman he was caught patronising. But his infamous ‘smash it’ gaffe did reveal a particularly nasty, prehistoric attitude towards women.

Granted, his hands are unnaturally hairy. But there was no real way of knowing he was a caveman in disguise until he was handed a microphone and paid a lot to spout off.

I imagine Berlusconi would pat a man on the back for making such a crass comment. But then that’s why the former Italian prime minister is such a prize plum.

Someone, somewhere, should have slapped that bed-hopping chump a long time ago. If only German chancellor Angela Merkel had found the courage to step up to the plate.

Cameron might look like a modern man, but don’t let that baby papoose and the ‘call me Dave’ thing blind you to his failings.

He showed his real colours when he heckled a fellow MP with the deeply insulting ‘calm down dear’.

Meanwhile, the BBC can’t think of a single sportswoman who deserves to be recognised for her achievements – but believes a flipping panda should make it on to its Woman of the Year list.

Point out incidents of sexism – even when it’s breathtakingly blatant examples like all of the above – and you’re accused of being a bit of a whinger.

But if 2011 has taught us anything, it’s that the little people will never be as important as the money men, and that many are still woefully unenlightened when it comes to issues of equality.