Cameron, protesters, police and democracy
Cameron, Clegg and the Coalition have been a huge disappointment to me. They came into power, with the help of my vote and a majority of the UK population, on a mandate for rolling back the authoritarian era of New Labour. It was a period of great hope. Now is a time of severe disillusion.
“Of course there is a right to protest peacefully, there always should be,” he [prime minister David Cameron] said.
“There is not a right to go on the streets of London, wanting to pursue violence…”
David Cameron in Police Oracle
He is correct. Everybody has a right to demonstrate peacefully. Nobody has a right to engage in violence other than in self-defence. So any protestors who were physically violent or damaged property need to justify their action to the courts.
I trust (a misuse of language, because I have little faith) that these policemen will also have to face the courts. If you haven’t seen the footage of the cerebral palsy sufferer being pulled from his wheelchair by the police, please watch it now.
And then, if you haven’t seen the most shameful piece of journalism I have come across in a long time, watch this interview with the wheelchair occupant.
This is not about students or even student fees. This is about freedom, liberty, the kind of Britain I want to live in, and democracy. I say to Cameron and Clegg, do not become Chaucer’s smiler. Stand up for freedom; do not complete the process started by New Labour: do not allow the UK to become a police state.