Charlie Elphicke, Conservative MP for Dover and Deal and a member of the Public Administration Select Committee, said at a meeting of the committee this morning that face-to-face fundraising was "one of the great infestations of modern life that lashes out at people in the street" and was "toxic to the charity brand".
"If parliament acted to stamp out this abuse and invasion of our personal space, would that be the right thing to do?"
Well actually, Charlie, that answer to your question is "no". You - by which I mean parliament and MPs - have no responsibility for the "charity brand" (whatever that may mean). Charities are private organisations and their public image is a matter for their trustees and no-one else. More to the point, chugging may be annoying but it is not an invasion of your personal space and a charity fundraiser - usually a student supplementing their income - who "lashed out" at anyone would be quickly charged with assault.
Banning things just because we don't like them or worse, calling for bans just to get a headline, is an appalling attitude. Too many MPs - from every side - seem however to think it OK. It isn't.