Blue Peter was for middle class kids  – Jim’ll Fix It was for us.  The clue is in in the punctuation.  As everyone has been saying – it was hidden in plain view.

Jimmy Savile turned out to be a paedophile and an abuser on a grand scale.  The misery his real legacy has left on his victims is unimaginable.  For the generations of children who watched him turn letters into dreams this is more than a media exposé.  Smartprice Santa just died – again!

Miserable he may have been, but James Wilson Vincent Savile knew you never get something for nothing.  Raising millions for charity, ‘fixing it’ for children, volunteering his time and patronage – clearly money and admiration was not enough.  Sadly, this seems to have been a message he passed onto the children he abused – you scratch my back…

The twisted logic of this self-made, working class man is key.  There will be reproaches and there must be consequences.  If we fall into the trap of monsterising him purely because he was eccentric however, we have learnt nothing.

Chris Jeffries was hounded after his early questioning in 2010 by police during the Joanna Yeates murder investigation was revealed.  The Rochdale paedophile gang was able to carry on with impunity, sanctioned to some extent by the services that were meant to protect vulnerable children.  The difference? Chris Jeffries looked odd.  The men who make up paedophile rings are often ‘respectable’ family men or community members who aggressively compartmentalise.  Jimmy Savile visually resembled Chris Jeffries more than the Rochdale paedophiles, but Chris Jeffries is innocent.  Evil does not wear a face.

The very thing that made Jimmy exceptional was his difference.  Not only working class, he was talented and innovative in his field. Accepting this fresh face into the closed shop of the BBC was a good thing.  If he could rise from humble origins, maybe others could too?  How tragic that this sick emblematic oddball has made diversity suspicious again.  Bring on the freak show.

Guilty as he was, how much more guilty were the politicians, public figures, organisations and people who employed and trusted him?  He made no secret of the fact that he demanded a ‘rider’ like any rockstar dj – cigars, gifts, private quarters, master keys…children.

Paedophilia is stoked by a society that sees some children as naturally more entitled than others. Jim’ll Fix It was watched most longingly by those kids who didn’t have a realistic chance of ever doing some fairly ordinary experiences.  What use was a Blue Peter badge if your parents worked nights and weekends?  The kids who won something patently had mummies who had time to bake.  And who went to museums and galleries anyway? Did they show Captain Caveman or Scooby Doo?  It was and is a different world.

Savile knew this, and he knew the instant gratification he could so quickly grant and demand.  He also knew that these kids thought very little of their own inherent value – because they had none – unlike him. The phones, drinks, sweets and clothes used by the Rochdale gang are no different.  Coercion masquerades as kindness. Savile’s behaviour was rationalised in just the same way the social workers decided the girls made ‘lifestyle choices.’

Smartprice Santa’s are everywhere – gone today, back tomorrow.  And be ready with those mince pies kids.  It may not be mummy who Santa Claus wants to kiss.

Jane Renton is a thirtysomething writer and mother of three children with disabilities. Follow Jane on twitter/@rentonifyable