Pre-emptive Arrests In UK

With the upcoming Thatcher burial (or firing her out of a cannon, or whatever they’ll do with her), some people have been taken by surprise by suggestions that activists may be pre-emptively arrested to prevent them from disrupting the funeral.

If you’re one of those surprised people, you haven’t been paying attention. The police have increasingly arrested people – including those with no history of violence – in the run-up to major events.

This is just one more example of thought crime, which has been increasingly prevalent since 9/11. But, you may say, in a democracy, how can political speech be criminalised? It can’t – democracy is meaningless without the right to protest.

Arrests were made in the run-up to the Royal Wedding in 2011, and 97 people were arrested in the run-up to Notting Hill Carnival that year.

Here’s a video of the political arrest of Charlie Veitch, in 2011, in the run up to the Royal Wedding. He was held for 24 hours to prevent him from making any kind of protest, however peaceful or humour-based. This is what a police state looks like in Britain: polite police officers enforcing undemocratic edicts from above to prevent speech that upsets “the establishment” – whatever and whoever that may be.

12 thoughts on “Pre-emptive Arrests In UK”

  1. don’t forget when the protesters in parliament square were evicted (one or two years ago i think) before the queen was driven past past the area – the evening standard newspaper praised the police for removing them before the queen had a chance to be traumatised by the frightful sight of common folk daring to protest against a war!

    1. Veitch doesn’t seem much like Jones. Perhaps he’s paranoid, but then if he is, why are cops turning up to arrest him when no crime has been committed?

  2. In the US someone was recently sent down for having wanting to kidnap a woman with a motive to eat her alive or something. Evidence was there to support the thought process, but thanks to a pre-emptive arrest it was pre-empted.

    I guess the balancing act comes down to whatever it was that Charlie was clearly intending to do, which isn’t clear in the video, and the fact that he wasn’t charged would indicate false arrest?

    1. Charlie and the Love Police specialised in hugging cops and trying (in their own sweet way) to make the world a more friendly place. The establishment wanted to maintain the pretence that everyone loves the royal family, thus arrested anyone who might break that fairy tale. There was no threat of anything else.

        1. Plus, I agree in that this country is not a freedom of speech, section 5 and all the other items of restriction the last Government brought in stamped all over that, which perhaps leaves:-
          – positive speech
          …that said, Charlie is a tall and hairy creature with rather strange conspiracy views.

          I wouldn’t want Charlie to hug me, can you blame the police for therefore sticking him in the slammer?

  3. 97 people arrested before Not Carival? Given the police have found weapons such as samurai swords and knives amongst some people attending the carnival it would be presumptutious to assume that all those arrested are innocent and just victims of police over reaction as it would be to assume all are guilty of some crime.

    I suspect many anarchists are going to cause violence during Thatcher’s funeral. I have ZERO sympathy for them if they get hauled into a police van and carted off to the slammers.
    They do not represent the working classes, the represent nihilastic posh annarchists who think they are saving the world by smashing things up. They are morons too.

    1. I’ve been to Carnival most years for over 3 decades. There are groups of teens who cause trouble sometimes, but much trouble is related to police behaviour. Carnival is a huge party, and a testament to people’s ability to get along together in peace (when the police allow them). For years, the police have been raiding the local community before Carnival to maximise discontent and increase the chances of a good ruck (why would you join the police if you didn’t enjoy a good fight from time to time?)

      Last year, they swamped the area with sniffer dogs in the days before the event. Do sniffer dogs find knives? No, they find cannabis. The only possible explanation is to cause upset.

      During the partying, sound systems are almost drowned out by surveillance helicopters and people start calling the police names. Knives can be found anywhere, not just at Carnival – the police’s racist obsession with spoiling this annual party is a very old one.

  4. Apparently we now have “permitted protests”! There was a recent story on the BBC about a man with Parkinson’s disease who was arrested for “not smiling during a sporting event” (the disease made it impossible for him to do so), but this charge apparently was not ridiculous enough for the BBC to comment on it.

    Whatever your views of Thatcher (my own is that the changes went too far and were unnecessarily brutal, but some were inevitable), there’s no doubt she was a divisive leader, but one who had long-lasting influence (all the political parties today are broadly Thatcherite). Since the current Government is trying to use her funeral as a state funded Tory party political broadcast, it is only right that protest should be properly reflected.

    It was even suggested there should be a minute’s silence at football matches (that would have worked well at the Newcastle v Sunderland match!), suggested by, among others, John Madejski, Reading Chairman. Reading were playing Liverpool, who were commemorating the Hillsborough tragedy, and whose fans will not have forgotten Mrs Thatcher’s role in supporting South Yorkshire police (who had done her bidding at Orgreave, using the same smear tactics as were later used at Hillsborough). I’ll expand my views on Hillsborough if wanted, but it should not be seen in isolation.

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