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Friday, 29 April 2011

and on this day

......this footage comes to light from an arrest made yesterday.

What you are seeing is the reaction from the state to an absurdest theatre group participating in some street entertainment in protest about the Royal wedding.
Now the first thing you have to ask yourself is this.
Do they have the right to protest?
The answer is of course they do.
Then it would be fair to consider if the manner they were doing so could cause offence?
Apparently it didn't though?
It would seem - from other reports that I have read - that no member of the public complained about them at all.
It was simply a whimsical piece of satire performed in a leafy street that would fall far short of anything we would see on 'Mock the week', 'Have I got news for you' or any other television show that featured a satirical element to it.
So were the causing an obstruction?
That would be a fair question to ask wouldn't it?
Maybe they were, but so do many groups of drunken young men and women on a weekend and the response by the police is rather different isn't it?
I think in this case we really do have to ask ourselves what is going on here.
Without getting hysterical about it what we are seeing is state suppression.
It is on a small scale, but that is what it is.
Of course there are certain incidents that have grey areas that people can argue over when it comes to the thorny subject of protest.
Rioting for instance.
Some will say it is justified, others will say it is occasionally justified, while there will be those who say it is never required nor justified.
Everyone is entitled to their view.
Vandalism is another issue that is often raised.
The destruction of property by protesters divides public opinion. As it should. It's healthy to address these issues publicly.
Is it or is it not justifiable? You will once again have your own opinion on the matter.
Yet here we have a small group of people inoffensively making their feelings known regarding the public wedding and being arrested for doing so.
Is this really acceptable behaviour from the state?
There are no placards, angry youths in black masks or even raised voices in anger.
There is no destruction of property, no violence threatened and certainly no vandalism.
Instead we are seeing a ridiculous amount of police responding to a a non incident and then carrying out orders that make no sense.
Arresting these individuals was not in the interest of the public.
It certainly wasn't to ensure our safety either.
Are any of us really concerned about an elderly man and woman lampooning the royals?
So please ask yourself what is really going on here.
Is this the sort of society that we want?
Do we really want the the tales of Kafka and Orwell to increasingly become more of a reality?
This behaviour from the state concerns me, but more so the behaviour of the police.
Where was one officer willing to step forward and state that this was not really their job?
That it wasn't what he or she had signed up for.
This is simply police officers acting like drones and carrying out the wishes of the state without question.
Now that's a slippery slope.
Where does it end?
The psychological impact of an authority figure telling someone that they must do something as it is their job is frighteningly powerful.
Now I can appreciate that the officers in this footage will have mortgages, bills to pay, and family to look after, and few people would be willing to stand up and risk their job when they consider the personal impact it could have on them, but history has shown us the end result of blindly following orders.
The officers involved in this have brought shame on themselves, and to a degree their colleagues to.
If they said nothing on this day, then what will they do when asked to use force against what they personally perceive to be a peaceful protest.
Now think what I just said there.
They perceive it to be a peaceful protest, but the orders from on high are to use force.
Now will they?
Will they consider that it is more than their job is worth to excuse themselves and refuse to participate?
How much of a leap is it from that participating in the detention of innocents?
Or worse.
I'm not comfortable with what I have seen in this footage, and neither should you be.
This is not about being for or against the Royal Wedding. This is about freedom of speech.


  1. Guilty! before even doing anything, and Britain's trying to remove dictators like Gadaffi. Democracy and Freedom yeah so long as you see things their way.

  2. Apart from the supression of freedom of speech that is going on in this country I was unsurprised to speak to colleagues at work who knew nothing of the trouble in Bristol, the raids on squats and much more.
    Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil. Duh?

    A point I meade on Facebook when I linked to this was that we currently allow the EDL, and others, to express their hate as it is their right to do so. Yet an elderly man doing a bit fo street theatre is somehow so dangerous that it cannot be allowed to happen.
    Something wrong there.