Kathy Gyngell: Policing Twitter returns us to the dark ages

Well before the end of the last century, Britain had established a democratic rule of law and civil society that was the envy of the world.

Ask almost any immigrant arriving in this country in the last 50 years why they chose to come here instead of elsewhere and they will tell you it was for the rule of law. That is how the once Filipino, now British, man at the till of my local Waitrose put it to me the other week. To live safely in a civil society was his primary desire - above and beyond even getting a job or speaking a known language. If there was any remaining concern about equality under the law, it was dealt with by new anti-discrimination laws in the 1970s

Now the DPP is set on destroying the very civility so valued by these new arrivals through a corruption of the purpose and principles of the law, representative of less open and more totalitarian societies.

This is what Alison Saunders, the Director of Public Prosecutions, is doing with her newly constructed online hate crime law campaign.  It is a pity she cannot be laughed off as a bossy head girl. But, as Laura Perrins tweeted yesterday, Robespierre would be proud.

Hate crime law is flawed in the first place and a licence for paranoia. It does not just punish the act, it speculates as to the motive, muddling the distinction between bad acts and the ‘bad thoughts’, which it attempts to judge.

The case against it is that it is social construction, based on the questionable idea that we are beset by prejudice.  Arguably we have never been freer of it or more tolerant. Hard cases make bad law at the best of times.

The fact is that crime is not synonymous with the prejudice problem; there is little overlap between the two. As Jacobs and Potter (1998, p. 153) point out: “With the important exception of crime against women, most crime is intraracial and intragroup. Hard core ideologically driven hate crimes are fortunately rare”.

Yet Saunders is set on extending this construct to online verbal abuse or mockery - treating it as seriously as a real life attack.

This is not just  totalitarianism in action but a recipe for ever angrier and more resentful behaviour. It is, as Brendan O’ Neill has described it, a ‘snowflakes charter’ on whose behalf our already hard-pressed police will be encouraged to be as vigilantes - policing these 'safe spacers''Twitter feeds for abuse.  They all also have to be there for any resentful individual or lobby with an axe to grind.

It is true that the anonymity of Twitter encourages bad and base behaviour. But if Saunders had any understanding of what makes for a civil society, she would know that policing words and thoughts (as opposed to actions)  will discourage civility and increase fear.

A properly functioning civil society is maintained by social sanctions as well as by the law. Prosecuting thought is no way to instill codes of good behaviour.  We once expected our spiritual leaders to guide us in the virtues of kindness, sensitivity, understanding and gentleness. Now sadly they just compete in expressing their own virtue

No law can replace moral guidance.

Saunders's moral priorities are anyway dangerously skewed. For example, there has not been one, not one, successful prosecution for FGM. Yet she believes that something called bi-phobia – a social construct if ever there was one - should be prosecuted.Saunders is not just setting the culture of complaint into law, she has invited the chief identity politics complainants to frame the law in their own interests. For once legislatures begin to enact hate-crimes laws, everyone — that is every constituency with political clout — gets into the act of agitating to be included. Ms Saunders shamelessly listed who these constituencies were in a chilling interview with Nick Robinson on Today on Monday (see full transcript below).

Society it appears has no responsibility either for encouraging, endorsing, or restraining or disapproving of other people's actions.

Yet we know that it is social sanctions, or people voting with their feet, that changes people’s behaviour. Shame is still a powerful tool. Even big corporations like Google or a Facebook can be shamed. And people too can vote with their feet. No one is forced to sign up to Twitter.

We are warned. The individual alone is in the DPP’s sight.  What has happened in Canada is on its way here. Since it became illegal to use the wrong gender pronouns  any Canadian who fails to subscribe to progressive gender theory can be accused of hate crime, jailed, fined, and made to take anti-bias training. Be very very careful what you write on-line.You may be calling a 'she' not a 'they' at your peril.

Criminalising the individual's thought while relieving civil society of its duty influence and contain behaviour is to return to the dark ages. It is a recipe for a society living on resentment and hate - not happiness – and a Charter for ever-greater discontent.

 

A full transcript of Saunders’s 'explanation' of her actions in an interview on BBC Radio 4, Today, 21st August 2017 is posted below:

NICK ROBINSON: People all over the world are questioning how those in positions of power can counter the kind of extreme views that increasingly are being aired and how societies might do more to prevent such opinions from gestating in the first place - those are the words of the Director of Public Prosecutions Alison Saunders, in The Guardian today, on a day that she’s publishing new guidance to prosecutors to ensure that they take online hate crime as seriously as hate crime that is off-line. And Alison Saunders joins us from Westminster this morning, good morning to you.
ALISON SAUNDERS: Good morning.
NR: That sounds like an extraordinarily broad definition that you’re having there, that really that the police and prosecutors should try and make us happier, a safer society.
AS: (short laugh) I wish we could do that, but we can play our part in doing that, and certainly what we can do is reassure people who suffer hate crime, and there are many people who do and don’t report it, that they can come forward, that they should report it and that we will prosecute these cases where we have sufficient evidence to do so.
NR: Is the problem in the minds of the victims of that, or, in truth, hasn’t there been a culture in the police, perhaps amongst your own prosecutors that online abuse isn’t taken quite as seriously as someone being abused in the street?
AS: I certainly don’t think it’s sort of an issue for prosecutors, I think what we have done over the past few years is seen more online cases being prosecuted. I think people think it’s a sort of, somehow…people don’t understand that committing a crime online is just as serious and just as easily prosecuted…(words unclear due to speaking over)
NR: (speaking over) Partly because they don’t…forgive me, but partly because they’re unclear what that phrase ‘hate crime’ really means. When does something stop being abuse, saying something pretty foul to someone…
AS: Yeah.
NR:… and when does it become a ‘hate crime’.
AS: And that’s a really important distinction because one thing we are not doing is [missing word, ‘being’?] there to regulate free speech or stop free speech. So, and there is a line between which is a sort of fine line sometimes between free speech which may be distasteful, which may, which most others may find completely unreasonable and unacceptable, and something that is grossly offensive. So, if you’re just talking about a sort of…I say ‘just’, but a sort of trolling type thing, it would be where it becomes grossly offensive, which is actually quite a high level, but you can also…
NR: (interrupting) ‘High level’ are terribly hard to define, isn’t it?
AS: Erm, well it’s not, erm, not that hard to define, our social media guidance defines it, and we have seen our number of prosecutions going up in this regard, and successfully so, so…
NR: So more prosecutions we’re seeing now, and of course, that means that people are getting longer sentences as well, often, doesn’t it?
AS: Especially if it’s a hate crime, because we have the ability to ask the court to increase sentences for hate crime, which they do now in over 50 per cent of the cases that we prosecute, under hate crime…
NR: (interrupting) This, at a time, of course, as you will be very familiar with, at a time when we’re also hearing that the prisons are full to the brim, and there’s a real struggle to cope with the number of prisoners they’ve already got?
AS: Erm, and that’s obviously a different issue, because for me the issue is to make sure that we are prosecuting the right people and that the courts have the ability to sentence appropriately, and they are given the ability to do so by the charges that we take, so it’s really important that the courts are given the evidence to recognise that these are hate crimes and to apply the legislation which gives them the power to increase sentences for hate crime.
NR: Perhaps the legislation should change to make it clearer that instead of this being down to the police and then ultimately to your prosecutors, this should be down to the companies that published this stuff in the first place…
AS: (speaking over) Well look…
NR:…to police what is online.
AS: But at the bottom of this is individuals, and it’s actually somebody’s individual responsibility. So we don’t condone any behaviour which is unlawful in the physical sphere, so why should we condone it online. So individuals need to appreciate that they can’t just go online and press a button and send something off without any consequences.
NR: Well, we were hearing from Luciana Berger, a Labour MP, who’s been attacked in the most appalling way, I mean, two people have been prosecuted and…
AS: Hmm.
NR:…imprisoned. But it…shouldn’t it be the responsibility of the Twitters and the Facebooks and others that when a campaign, and forgive me for repeating it again, but it gives a sense of how awful it was…
AS: Hmm.
NR:…that she’s referred to repeatedly as ‘a filthy Jew bitch’, something should be done about it.
AS: Erm, I think there are things that they…that can be done, and should be done around making sure things are taken down, but it is still an individual responsibility, so we don’t say that it’s anybody else’s responsibility to stop assaults, or to stop people abusing people in the street, in the same way, so it…at the end of the day, individuals have to be accountable for their behaviours and their actions, and that’s why it’s important that people recognise this and recognise that they can report these crimes, and that they will be prosecuted, that’s why the public statements are out there, that’s why we’re starting our social media campaign today, so that people understand what they can report, and that they don’t have to put up with this type of behaviour.
NR: Now, the number of categories covered by this so-called ‘hate crime’ seems to increase, I know there’s a focus today on what’s called biphobic crime…
AS: Hm-hmm.
NR:…you’re probably going to have to explain that to, to people. There are… Some people have argued that misogyny should be included as a definition. Do you see new definitions being added to what is and is not acceptable under the law?
AS: I mean the bipho— this…biphobic is around making sure that prosecutors are aware, and we’ve had a lot of help in erm, in preparing the, erm, statements, the public statements that we’ve issued today from groups such as Gallup and Stonewall, the Community Security Trust and Tell MAMA and others, erm, to make sure that we understand what the issues are for individual people, and those characteristics that may be the subject of hate crime.
NR: Alison Saunders, Director of Public Prosecutions, thank you for joining us.

Kathy Gyngell

  • Nick Booth

    The police have gone from streetwise to tweetwise.

    It’s criminal how long it takes the top plods to come to their senses.

    I guess you’d call that a hiatus crime.

  • So….TellMama is helping shape our new hate laws (last paragraph). This outfit is about one thing only, enabling the Islamisation of Britain. I see Ms Saunders mentions a number of groups, including TellMama, but oddly enough seems unable to mention any group established to counter genunie hate crime such as the gang-rape and torture of English girls by Muslim men – which the state ignored for decades and which is STILL going on. There is no democratic way out of this wicked situation. Revolution.

  • Corbyns_cat

    Our local LibDem councillor sent a house to house missive a few days ago – amongst other things he wailed about policing and the supposed effect of “Tory cuts” on local crime-fighting. Maybe instead he should be asking if they’re spending time at a comfy desk looking for “hate crimes” on Twitter.

  • Uusikaupunki

    “To speak his thoughts is every freeman’s right, in peace and war, in council and in fight.”

    Homer

    Just who is this Saunders woman to arbitrarily decide what is or isn’t crime? Not for nothing under her jurisprudence the CPS has been called the “Criminal Protection Service”.

  • I am surprised that those in positions of power have not yet made the link between their perception of a rise in ‘hate crime’ and their suppression of our freedom to openly discuss matters that concern us. The phrase ‘letting off steam’ was aptly chosen.

  • TmWe

    It is completely outrageous that malign individuals like Saunders can create crimes like this. I would have no problem if this were fully laid out in an election manifesto and the UK public voted for such foolery. But this exposes how big an impact those who are un-elected can have upon us.

  • The very concept of hate crime is the “progressive”/socialist dream and is antithetical to a “liberal” democracy. It is not enough for the statist totalitarians (among whom I include Theresa May) that the government control the economy, including everybody’s private property and labour but they now want the government to control our thoughts. And all this under a Conservative government!!! Will a real conservative please step forward!

  • UKCitizen

    Inviting the third world into the first world just turns the first world into the third world.
    Most of the third world is based on collectivism of one sort or another either politically or religiously or both. Introduce that into an individualist society and those with the greater in group preference will eventually dominate.
    The eventual end result of continuous immigration and diversification will be an authoritarian state, as that will be the only way you can stop the society tearing itself apart.

    • JabbaPapa

      Most of the third world is based on collectivism of one sort or another either politically or religiously or both

      An egregiously false statement.

      The phrase “third world” merely refers to “not-the-NATO-nor-the-ex-Warsaw-Pact-nations”

  • UKCitizen

    We all know what this will be used for.
    it will be used to stifle any dissent form the current politically correct perceived wisdom.
    Once in force anything can and will be added to the list.
    Guarantee nobody that sends Nigel Farage death threats will be prosecuted and I doubt any anti-semetic comments by Labour MPs or members of our favourite faith will be included either.

    • paul parmenter

      Exactly. As they say, the only question that then matters is whose finger is on the trigger.

    • Exactly! Hate speech legislation is just a thinly veiled “progressive” club given legitimacy by those who are meant to protect us from violence.

  • UKCitizen

    Issue a death threat – 10 years increased to 15
    Actually kill someone – 10 years reduced to 5!

  • Damaris Tighe

    IF there were no hate speech laws; IF ‘Islamophobia’ was not a potential crime: IF crime was limited to action rather than purported motivation; then it would be possible for everyone commenting on the internet to use their own names and be fully accountable to their peers for what they say, the only sanction being peer and social disapproval. As Kathy says, in the past it has been social mores that dictated what was unacceptable speech. That didn’t stop brave people from saying the unsayable – without legal sanctions, but knowing the name of the speaker provided a break on some of the really foul stuff that crosses the line we now see under the cloak of anonymity.

    The British tradition for the last few hundred years has favoured polite and reasoned argument in public over personalised invective. Nastiness such as the example quoted in the transcript above was reserved for private conversations – which is everyone’s natural right. If only it were safe for us to use our real names on twitter and disqus, then I believe the most foul speech would regulate itself, and return to where it belongs – dinner parties and private conversations between friends.

    • Hate speech legislation is not about stopping “nastiness”. It is a “progressive” invention to facilitate cultural Marxism. This is so, SO obvious when you hear what the main proponents of hate speech legislation are trying to categorize as hate speech (social conservatism). It is not “nastiness” and swear words that are the target, but political and social argumentation that goes contrary to “progressive” dogma. The whole concept is an attack on reason, free-thought and open debate.

      • Damaris Tighe

        I agree, but the excuse is the ‘nastiness’. I was unable to spell it out because the quote I used directly from the interview transcript above put my comment into moderation and I had to post again without it.

        • Bugle

          More censorship!

  • Coniston

    Alison Saunders, the Director of Public Prosecutions should, as I have read elsewhere, be called by the more accurate title of ‘Witch Finder General’. But perhaps it is a ‘Hate Crime’ to say that. Step by step we are becoming a totalitarian State. This will, in our disordered times, be called ‘progress’.

    • Exactly! Although criminalizing dissenting opinion through hate speech legislation is already the hallmark of “progressivism”.

      • Bik Byro

        So when a hardline muslim cleric says on Twitter that all Christians should be beheaded, you’d be okay to just shrug your shoulders at that. OK.

        • That is incitement to violence which is a different offence. The key distinction is between calling for physical violence against person or property and simply “causing offense”.

          I consider Dawkins and his atheist acolytes’ calls to ridicule and humiliate Christians “hateful” but I am glad we live in a society which allows him to attack beliefs he finds abhorrent.

          • Bik Byro

            If you think a scientific argument against the existence of god comes under the definition of ‘hateful’, you seriously need to think again.

          • So when your high-priest Dawkins says:
            “The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully” you believe that is”science”? Perhaps you believe that “science” is anything a scientist says so no matter how hateful, if a scientist says it his pronouncements are exempt from hate speech laws? Perhaps he was speaking “ex-cathedra” because if you really believe the above quote is science you are beyond reason. Either way, your unwavering faith in the Dawkins’ delusion has completely blinded you to reality.

          • Bik Byro

            I don’t see anything at all in that which counts as hate speech. Either way, your unwavering faith in the god delusion has completely blinded you to reality.

        • Kingstonian

          Lol !! You honestly believe that plod is going to arrest a Muslim cleric or that the CPS would prosecute? This proposal by Saunders is aimed at those who disrespect Islam, not Muslims.

          • Bik Byro

            Lol !! You honestly have a source for that or did you just make it up in your head?

    • DespiteBrexit

      “Witch” will do, it seems to me. Her attitude to men and sex-crime is appalling.

    • Coniston

      Accidentally upticked myself – so have now downticked.

  • paul parmenter

    From criminal act to criminal speech. From criminal speech to criminal thought.

    Nice easy steps, are they not?

  • Owen_Morgan

    Another commenter has already drawn attention to the DPP’s reference to Tell MAMA as one of the organisations effectively dictating to her office how “hate crime” should be defined. It seems to me that a set-up which exists solely to pretend to identify “islamophobia” and one whose purpose is to proselytise for fake genders are fundamentally incompatible. I can’t be bothered to read the koran to check, but I’m going to guess that it refers to only two sexes, although I think there’s plenty of hate crime in there. Incidentally, according to sharia, if I did read the koran, as an infidel I’d be committing blasphemy, so I’d presumably have this ghastly Saunders woman after me.

    • Great Briton

      I always drop a line to Tell mama when there is a muslim terrorist atrocity. I assume they would want to add it to their hate crime statistics

      • Fahrenheit211

        Be careful that this action doesn’t get you a knock on the door from our pro-Islam police. Tell Mama will treat this as a ‘hate crime’ which not only shows how dishonest this group really is but also shows how easily ‘hate crime’ laws can be used and abused to shut down critics of organisations, cultures and belief systems. Owen Morgan is correct, the Tell Mama group exists solely to pump out the often fake Islamophobia narrative.

        I’ve written extensively and mocked mercilessly the Tell Mama group at my blog http://www.fahrenheit211.net and I’ve discovered that this group is extremely well connected and well funded by the taxpayer. The amount of money that Tell Mama and those connected with it have squeezed out of the taxpayer since 2007 is truly astonishing. It adds up to approximately £1m in the last ten years. Apart from the money for Tell Mama the founder of Tell Mama managed to get thousands of pounds for such worthless projects as a ‘mosque directory for women’, a ‘care for Islamic converts’ project and a ‘living Islam out loud’ project whatever that is. See http://www.fahrenheit211.net/2016/11/27/the-saga-of-the-tell-mama-group-and-taxpayers-cash-a-public-finance-and-probity-scandal-of-monstrous-proportions/

  • Great Briton

    Only one short step now until thought crime becomes an offence.
    We will then have reached full insanity.
    Is nobody in “power” going to stop this woman?

    • The_Pr1soner

      Those in power are part of it! Well, most. Certainly the ones in a position to do anthing about it.

  • simonstephenson

    I wonder why we allow ourselves to be shoehorned into taking for granted that mega-authoritarians like Alison Saunders, though perhaps mistaken, are genuine and sincere in expressing their belief that such authoritarianism is essential to prevent society from falling into barbarianism and collapse. Why could it not be the case that what the Saunders’s of the world really covet is much more basic – the self-affirmative power to dictate to other people and to push them around – and that all the speculative guff about how mega-authoritarianism is a regrettable necessity is merely a pretext for them achieving their most important ambitions, and would be dropped like a stone if it were to become likely that a different group of people, not themselves, were set to become the dictator-class?

    Looking at things from an outside-the-Overton-window angle is often the best way to reach the more likely explanation – especially when so much of what is in the public arena is mere propaganda intended to keep as many as possible from “straying” outside Overton.

  • viceroy

    I think it high time that the DPP became an elected position with candidates standing at the same time as the general election or after four years whichever is the longer. Then the public can determine for ourselves which prosecutions we see as being in ‘in the public interest’ and where we want the CPS’ focus to be. Rather than leaving it to some left-leaning lawyer who goes on to become a Labour MP, for example.

    Furthermore how has Parliament contrived to allow a class of criminal offences and/or aggravating factors to be created that need no evidence? This must contravene some element of Magna Carta or the Bill of Rights surely?

    • Worse, I suspect it even violate King Alfred the Great Charter. How quickly they would have us regress.

  • David

    What a superb, insightful article. It strikes me that it is government that is stoking the fires of suspicion and hatred at the behest of a vocal minority. We are hugely over-governed.

  • English Advocate

    “Hate crime” is where no material harm occurs but there is an infringement of state ideology.

    Offences involving assault, threatening behaviour or libel can be dealt with in accord with existing legal provisions.

    • Vengeful Fruitcake

      There seems to be an assumption that the criminal acts themselves are worse if motivated by hatred or what the victim of the crime thinks is hatred. I do not see why this should be.

      • paul parmenter

        Indeed. It is a pretty fair bet that someone who commits a crime against you is unlikely to be overwhelmed with love or even basic respect for you.

        • Dominic Stockford

          Except now of course. I now tell someone that unless they throw their trust on Jesus Christ the Bible says that they will go to hell for eternity – and I tell them so because I love them and do not want them to go to hell. And yet to do anything vocal about my genuine love and concern for their eternal future is now to become a criminal act.

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            That seems unfair to me. What about all the countless compassionate and good men, women and children who had the misfortune to be born before Christ? Are they all damned to hell because of an accident of birth? Or not? If they are that seems kind of devilish to me.

          • Phil R

            Don’t answer the question. Twist the question, then ask another question unrelated to the topic under discussion.

            Move the discussion on to safer ground.

            Do you work for the BBC?

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            This is the trouble with religion: people believe without knowing why they believe or considering the inherent unfairness, ridiculousness and ramifications of their belief.

            Let me help you out: Dante Alighieri wrote that Limbo was the place where virtuous and unbaptized persons ended up post mortem. (Squaring the first circle of Hell as it were.) Of course the Divine Comedy is a work of poetic imagination rather than theological invention although I would bet the farm that someone, somewhere, sometime, made up something very similar to the above in answer to my original question as religious readers of these very words may do so subsequently.

            It isn’t true of course.

            But in religious matters why should that be an impediment?

          • Phil R

            You want me to engage in this sideshow because you will not answer the question you ducked

            When you answer the question we can talk theology

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            Question? What question?

            The aside about the BBC was rhetorical, surely?

          • David

            In short your answer is that you agree that a verbal interaction inspired by Christian compassion as described by Dominic above ought to be forbidden and punished as a ‘hate crime’.
            This illustrates the problem with the concept of ‘hate crime’ perfectly.

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            If you can prove in court that Hell exists you might well be in with a chance to get me heftily fined I would imagine. I wish you the best of British luck on that one and would absolutely urge you and encourage you to give it a go if you – or anybody else – are up for it.

          • David

            No material loss so no grounds for court action.

            However, I would recommend extending your daily meditations beyond the Four Last Things. It’s really not good for the health. I’d suggest your consider the theological virtues of Faith, Hope and Love for your next meditations. Particularly Love, for which the opposing sin is Hate. Thus bringing us back on topic. Ubi Caritas et Amor, Deus ibi est. (sung in the round it makes a good contemplative scene)

          • Well said!

          • JabbaPapa

            This is the trouble with : people believe without knowing why they believe or considering the inherent unfairness, ridiculousness and ramifications of their belief

            FTFY

            You’re making a blatant category error — people believe in all manner of things “without knowing why they believe”, which is not specific to, nor germane to, nor derived from religion. Instead, it is a common flaw found in all of humanity in all of our beliefs, religious, political, philosophical, whatever.

            Let me illustrate this for you.

            Most people are poorly educated. This is a fairly self-evident truth.

            It is therefore also true that most atheists are poorly educated ; most women are poorly educated ; most Welsh are poorly educated. Can you see the category error that makes these statements unacceptable ? Can you therefore see the flaw in your own statement about religion ?

          • David

            The first few words of St John’s Gospel answer your question.

          • JabbaPapa

            What about all the countless compassionate and good men, women and children who had the misfortune to be born and die before Christ arrived? Are they all damned to hell because of an accident of birth?

            No — Dominic Stockford is of course just stating a Protestant Dogma, itself based on a warped reading of the Scripture. Are unsaved those whom God chooses not to save.

            To deliberately reject God and reject Christ is OTOH a far more specific Act than that Dogma suggests — and it constitutes a will towards damnation.

            Furthermore, that Protestant doctrine is not even based on the Scripture, but on a common but quite false misinterpretation of the doctrine extra ecclesiam nulla salus — which was a declaration against an early “multiple heavens for multiple religions” heresy. (yeah, this multiculturalism gibberish has been around since Antiquity … )

          • Dominic Stockford

            Not warped at all. We are saved by faith, not by works, so we cannot boast. Utterly Biblical.

          • JabbaPapa

            The “saved by faith, not by works” doctrine is based on a deliberate mistranslation by Martin Luther that has been perpetuated into all Protestant Bibles.

            We are saved by God, not by faith — if faith alone were sufficient, Satan would be in Heaven, and Adam would never have been cast out of Eden.

          • Dominic Stockford

            An reasonable accurate translation of Ephesians 2:8-9 is as follows:

            “Yes, it was grace that saved you, with faith for its instrument; it did not come from yourselves, it was God’s gift, not from any action of yours, or there would be room for pride.”

            Another is:

            “Because it is by grace that you have been saved, through faith; not by anything of your own, but by a gift from God; not by anything you have done, so that nobody can claim the credit.”

            Both are absolutely clear that salvation is by faith not by works. The first comes from the Bible translation by Monsignor Ronald Knox, a noted RC, and was authorized by the heirarchy of the RCC of England and Wales, and the Hierarchy of the RCC of Scotland. It was also published (the copy I have) by the publishers to the Holy See The second comes from the New Jerusalem Bible, the official translation of the RCC. I guess the RCC must be wrong in its translation as well!

          • JabbaPapa

            To say that one cannot be saved for one’s faith is exactly as heretical as the claim that faith alone is sufficient for salvation.

            {2:8} For by grace, you have been saved through faith. And this is not of yourselves, for it is a gift of God.
            {2:9} And this is not of works, so that no one may glory.

            by grace, you have been saved

            it is a gift of God

            It is absurd to read this as if it were faith alone providing salvation — which comes in Grace from God.

            This is clearly reinforced by “this is not of/from yourselves” — to claim that our Faith and our Acts of Faith can establish our salvation is to directly contradict the Gospel. Only God’s Grace, which can be motivated by such things in and from His Sovereignty, but maybe also by some other Virtues or Works, as we do not know and cannot determine from ourselves before that Mystery.

            The New Jerusalem Bible is not BTW “the official” Bible translation of the Holy Catholic Church.

          • Dominic Stockford

            Read Hebrews 11 regarding the salvation of those born before Jesus Christ. It’s all there. God has already dealt with your whinging.

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            You’ll have to explain that one to me I’m afraid. As I remember it in Hebrews 11 there’s a lot of twaddle about suffering, ordeal, faith and such like – the usual spiel shall we say – but I can’t remember any definitive statement that gets Christians out of the, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” bind which implicitly excludes people who have died before Christ’s birth, or, actually, until he became well-known and famous, from God and heaven.

            I don’t own a Bible and my memory of it isn’t as good as it used to be.

            The author of Hebrews is God you reckon.

            When I was a boy I was told the author of Hebrews was unknown.

            (My tutor was a D.D.)

          • JabbaPapa

            I can’t remember any definitive statement that gets Christians out of the, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” bind which implicitly excludes people who have died before Christ’s birth, or, actually, existed before he became well-known and famous, from God and presumably also from heaven

            Your misreadings do not define the Bible — you’re leaving out the essential fact of God’s transcendence of History.

            I don’t own a Bible

            And yet you see fit to critique its contents ? pffff, bloody typical …

          • Dominic Stockford

            It is disappointing to hear that someone who is happy to criticise the Christian faith is unable to refer to the foundation text of that faith because they don’t have one.

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            To be honest I prefer the subtlety of the Vedanta, Upanishads and the stories in the Mahabharata and Ramayana as far as religious mythology goes. (I am not a Hindu but like Hindu literature with all of its beautiful gods and gorgeous goddesses and vivid imagery.) So I have got quite a lot of Sanskrit translations on my bookshelves but no Biblical literature beyond a ragged Old Testament, in the original Hebrew, left over from my school days when I was compelled to study such things.

            The thing is as far as I am concerned religion is interesting from a sociological, psychological, anthropological and historical point of view but not as a concrete reality that has any actual literal meaning. As a phenomenon which has persisted throughout history religion must have some evolutionary value I would agree, mostly in respect to organising and consolidating human societies (by invoking divine authority) before the advent of secularism and science.

            Here’s the template….

            Some individual becomes restless or dissatisfied with the status quo as far as current religious belief goes. He (or she) then through a seeking nudging process, ruminating and thinking things over until they receive a ‘revelation’ of some kind which they feel compelled to share with others. They gather a few followers. If they are persuasive these followers expand and organise themselves formally, eventually founding a church or movement based on the teaching of the founder.

            With time they (or more usually later followers) expound and clarify their beliefs, iron out inconsistencies, and put them into doctrinal form to make sure these beliefs are firmly held and easier to propagate. As the religious institution begin to flourish and gain influence to enforce the growing body of beliefs within some society rules are made, because many belief systems, especially the monotheistic patriarchal ones, tend to view people as naturally bad, not good and in need of constant discipline to keep their noses to the wheel and prevent them straying from the faith. As the church or movement grows the accretion of doctrine, dogma, rules ceremonies and traditions balloons and eventually a full-fledged and functional religious belief-system is born.

            Ta-da.

            Tempus fugit …

            After centuries pass the beliefs/rules/dogma become firmly established and, often emulsified with secular politics, and enforced as law with punishments ranging ranging from a verbal shaming to death (all in the name of God, of course) . The religion’s orthodoxy becomes subsumed by and becomes an inextricable part of the establishment and as such begins to lose its attractiveness and wane. And then… as society evolves, devolves, goes through social convulsions and changes internal schism occurs; sects and splinter groups arise; bitter ridiculous hair-splitting arguments take place between lesser men (and women) about the meaning of scripture and such like and the original, quite possibly pure and admirable ideas and message of the founder, are lost and the religion, which may have begun with a noble purpose, loses energy and slowly declines until another individual becomes restless or dissatisfied with the status quo, has an epiphany, gathers a coterie of disciples and the cycle repeats itself.

            Judaism —> Christianity —> Islam —> ?

            Religion is a societal process not a reality.

            I find it incredible that so many people still accept such things literally.

            Personally I find the language in the Bible primitive and ugly for the most part which is why I don’t read it much, or indeed at all, now that I have the choice. There are much better and more elegant religious tomes available and, although I don’t believe in them any more than anything else, I do love the colour, intelligence, compassion, beauty, morality, heroism and imagination expressed in them much, much more than anything in the Torah, Bible of Koran.

            (The Song of Solomon being an exception, maybe.)

    • Bik Byro

      So if somebody who disliked you went on public media every single day to call your mother a prostitute and wish your children dead of cancer, you’re saying there wouldn’t come a point where you would like the police to step in and deal with that person?

      • English Advocate

        If one’s mother wasn’t a prostitute that would be defamation.

        I think there may be provision for harassment/stalking type offences.

  • Is a return to the Dark Ages something the author is for or against?

  • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    This has all the odour of “You are insufficiently ‘anti-hate,’ Comrade– denounce yourself!”, if one were to question the very premise of prosecution for “hate crimes.”

    A thought experiment here: A robber coshes someone on the head and rifles their pockets/handbag/whatever, saying nothing to the victim and thus disclosing no personal feelings against the victim or the victim’s status as a [name of protected class] (as in The Godfather, “it’s only business…”). This is of course a crime, and should be prosecuted as such. How does anything the robber does or does not say to the victim about the victim’s identity worsen the crime as committed? This answer is, of course, that it doesn’t.

    It would appear, then, that if one wanted simply to brain members of a minority for their being a minority, it would behove that bigot to make it look like a robbery, not unlike the way a murderer might disguise motive by making it look like “a mugging gone bad.” As long as our hypothetical “hate criminal” stays schtum whilst doing it, he is less of a target for the moral opprobrium of all the “right-thinkers” out there.

  • The_Mocking_Turtle

    People who abuse others repeatedly and aggressively will get warnings first, to pull their socks up, and if they don’t mend their ways the worst amongst them will be prosecuted. Oddly enough if such policing were extended to blogs and similar several people who write article and comment on this very site would doubtless be in the frame as far as unacceptable language and behaviour is concerned.

    Clip the bracelets on ’em Constable, it’s a fair cop!

    • Sorry…are you supporting “hate speech” legislation by telling us not to worry as “not everybody making faux pas online is going to end up doing a stretch of porridge” or are you threatening those who disagree with you that you can now call the police if you deem any comment you don’t like as “hateful”?

      • The_Mocking_Turtle

        Yes.

        • Phil R

          Worked well in East Germany.

          Everyone hated the State

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            The East Germans couldn’t vote out the people who governed them. We can. So if you don’t like the laws being made by the powers that be, vote for somebody who better represents your views when the next general election comes around.

          • That is ridiculously naive (no hate intended)!!! Marxists/progressives are masters of creating a climate of fear and intimidation to stop anyone who would think of standing against their agenda. You only need look at the abuse that Nigel Farage received for his valiant efforts to take us off the path of global socialism.

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            We don’t have a Marxist/Socialist government but a coalition government formed from the Conservatives and even more conservative DUP. It isn’t the “left” proposing or doing any of this.

          • Bugle

            Yet.

          • Phil R

            We have a form of democracy. Heavily infuenced by the MSM. Fake news, the relentless PC narrative ensures only one result.

            Or at least it did until a Trump.

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            What’s the alternative? As for Trump, well, my bet is that he won’t last four years or honour pretty much every promise and pledge he made to the electorate. Of course Donald will blame his failures on others. To be honest I think there is every reason to believe that his Presidency will end up being so bad that the American right may end up damaged forever once people see what that chaotic politics actually means when put into practice.

            Thanks, Donny.

          • Phil R

            Americans voted for Trump’s policies not Trump.

            If he doesn’t deliver then they will find someone who will.

          • Bugle

            If Trump goes, a beacon of hope for the West will have been put out.

    • None, repeat none of your business, and more to the point, none of the government’s business what anybody says, on Twitter, Facebook or in person, barring only fighting words and perhaps national security. Harry Truman said it best, ‘If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen”.

  • rbw152

    Well I can’t think of any other societies in the world which have policed thought and speech to the detriment of their people’s liberty, can you?

    Oh wait…

  • paul parmenter

    Can I naively suggest that a very effective way of stopping “hate crime” against you might be to stop doing things that have a very good chance of causing people to hate you?

  • Dominic Stockford

    A way to avoid people saying nasty thing to you on twitter is not to go on twitter. Or just block people. What is being suggested by Alison Saunders seems to me to be a great way to shut down anyone with Biblical Christian views. That is, those who oppose same-sex marriage (it isn’t marriage), those who object to having homosexuality constantly thrust in our face as ‘the’ way to be, and those who object to our children being taught not facts, but what to think.

  • Liberanos

    I think the hate crime of blowing up or raping infidel children should be banned.

    • The_Mocking_Turtle

      Aren’t they already? Where did you see or hear people saying things like that?

  • John Hunter

    But then why bother policing it when you can hijack the whole bus as evident from another nutty extreme idealist former undercover CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson has launched a crowdfunding campaign in hopes of raising enough money to buy Twitter so she can then ban Trump from using it.

    The blonde ex-spook launched the fundraiser last week, tweeting: “If @Twitter executives won’t shut down Trump’s violence and hate, then it’s up to us. #BuyTwitter #BanTrump.”

    Personally, I think once a social media platform reach the point that has an overwhelming monopoly over political opinion, it should be subjected to a public neutral ombudsman appointed by the government that is not an employee or benefiting in any way from the holding company.

  • noix

    The justice system doesn’t have enough money (resources) it says, yet it now wants iPlod to roam the internet to find out who thinks people are being nasty to them. Truth is immaterial in this scenario, repeating the truth could upset people. How many have said things in real life that people have taken the wrong way and read their own insecurity into?
    This is a way to tie people up in court proceedings to silence them. It is a betrayal of our heritage that many died to establish.

    • The_Mocking_Turtle

      I think actions against individuals will be based on complaints made by others about offensive content, not by globally policing everything that is going on online. Which isn’t feasible really.

      • Phil R

        “I think actions against individuals will be based on complaints made by others about offensive content”

        But complaints will be one sided. For instance if you make offensive comments about my Christian beliefs and what the Bible says about say sexuality and I complain, it will not be taken seriously. However, if I state what the a Bible says about sexuality, it will be deemed offensive.

        Offence will never cut both ways

        • The_Mocking_Turtle

          We’ve got all kinds of hotlines for people to complain about everything from benefit fraud to murder. People are not prosecuted based on anonymous complaints without corroborative evidence; people won’t be prosecuted without reason based on the say-so of one or more individuals.

          Nobody is going to arrested for objecting to homosexuality or criticising religion or similar. However, if you begin to advocate violence or inciting untoward harm or prejudice against a person, or persons, without cause or good reason you could be penalised. So calling a named individual akin to the late “Jihadi John” a psychopathic, murderous thug that deserved to be put to death wouldn’t get you into trouble, because it would be fair comment, but attacking Islam generally and Muslims indiscriminately would and should get you into hot water because it would be undeserved and a lie.

          Don’t be so paranoid.

          • Phil R

            “arrested for objecting to homosexuality”

            they already have and also for simply quoting what the bible says when asked

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            Not unless the language was extreme and Deuteronomy-like, advocating that gay people should be punished, murdered, or worse. Avoiding and disapproving of homosexuality as a private citizen is fine; just stay away from it. Trying to impose avoidance and disapproval of homosexuality as a societal trope isn’t acceptable and shouldn’t be. Personally I find virginity in men and women over the age of consent repulsive, but don’t waste my time trying to nudge the chaste into getting jiggy if their preference is not to, for whatever reason, whether I understand those reasons or not.

            The Bible says a lot of things, many of them cruel, brutal and ignorant.

            That’s the thing.

            If you harbour a conviction or a belief, that is not against the law, live by it if you choose to, as long as you don not end up breaking the law, but don’t seek to convert others to your point of view if/when they are not receptive and/or not interested.

          • Bugle

            Religious freedom is the freedom to believe whatever you like and express it publicly. Democracy is, amongst other things, the freedom to be wrong. Freedom of speech is, amongst other things, the freedom to express wrong opinions.

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            British democracy has nothing intrinsically to do with freedom whatsoever other than the freedom for eligible British citizens to vote periodically in elections, for individuals to represent them in government, law making and the political process, as Members of Parliament in the House of Commons. The freedoms you are talking about are guaranteed by British law not by British democracy which allows the formation of governments which can make, change and abolish law.

            I didn’t hear anybody complain when Anjem Choudary was jailed for five and a half years and his al-Muhajiroun organisation silenced. Me? Well I think the man deserved all he got,

            People should NOT have the freedom to attack, pillory or lie about anyone or anything with a view to doing another person or person harm. People should not have the freedom to incite ill feeling or promote violence in respect to any person (or people) or minority. Not Muslims, not Christians, not Jew, not Atheists, not anybody. Where there wrong has been done or is being done doing the police and the law is there to deal with it, not cyber-vigilantes, trolls or semi-literate keyboard warriors.

          • Bugle

            This is an internet forum, not a legal document. You can hardly expect contributors to dot every i and cross every t. My comment is a general statement about the nature of religious and political freedom. In another post you seem to suggest that our freedoms are safe because we can vote for or against those attempting to restrict them. In the US, of course, freedom of speech is enshrined in the Constitution, not subject to direct democratic pressure, and the Supreme Court has (so far) resisted attempts to compromise it: an example we would do well to follow in the UK.

            So, as to your first paragraph, freedom as it stands in British law is irrelevant to general principles. Freedoms of religion, speech, association etc. are both prerequisites to and the fruits of democratic government, whatever legal freedoms the State may have grudgingly conceded to us, and whatever freedoms it now seeks to restrict.

            I can’t comment in detail about Anjem Choudary, but I assume he was working for and raising funds for proscribed or terrorist organisations. No one on this forum is arguing about that. I assume there is also the question of incitement, which no one on here is defending.

            In your third paragraph, you conflate a number of things. “Attack” – it depends what you mean by this. To threaten is illegal, whereas to criticise is legitimate. “Pillory” – to hold some one up to public shame or sharp criticism? Legal. To stalk or harass: illegal. “To lie” – libel or slander. Measures against this are already in place. To “do harm”? Too vague. To “promote violence”: already illegal. To “incite ill feeling”: this is where SJWs in the US are heading, that certain kinds of speech ‘create an atmosphere’ which makes harm more likely. Claptrap.

            “Where wrong has been done”: it is as yet to be determined what “wrong” is being done, and your comment about “overstep[ping] the mark” is simply begging the question. Which mark?

            However, this is getting away from the matter in question which is the present government’s attempt to arrogate to itself unwarranted and excessive powers to censor the internet. Most contributors here do not think it is the place of government to have such powers, most would think it undermines democracy, and most – I guess – do not trust this government anyway. I note you are taking up a role of advocate for government proposals here, which makes me wonder if you are speaking for yourself or some one else?

            Finally, why should the religious mind? Because after 300 years of hard won religious toleration, religious people are being bullied and coerced by a supposedly conservative government into adopting views we find contrary to our faith – and on the flimsiest of pretexts. See my comment above.

          • JabbaPapa

            Self-selected cyber-vigilantes, trolls or semi-literate keyboard warriors who lie, falsify, distort, and overstep the mark deserve to be penalised appropriately

            You condemn yourself, and you support the condemnation of the very freedoms that you arrogate as being your natural right.

          • JabbaPapa

            The Bible says a lot of things, many of them cruel, brutal and ignorant

            Please can you explain how the Scriptures might have condemned cruelty, brutality, and ignorance without honestly describing these things ?

            But then my mind is not clouded

            An objectively false statement. Including in the part that I left out — your religious bias is extreme, and the absurdity of your typed words is blatant.

          • JabbaPapa

            Nobody is going to arrested for objecting to homosexuality

            You’re utterly eluded.

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            As a personal and private conviction not as a cause célèbre. Obviously.

          • Perhaps you would be so kind as to spend a little time thinking about your beliefs before you comment because you are contradicting yourself with almost every post! Firstly we are not to worry because “we won’t be arrested for online faux pas”, then you threatened some of the people who comment and write here could be in danger. Then you say “don’t be so paranoid” because “nobody is going to arrested for objecting to homosexuality or criticising religion or similar” but then in the next post add as long as its not a “cause célèbre” as opposed to a “personal and private conviction obviously”! Your comments are logically incoherent! Posting on the internet is the definition of not being “personal and private” and the whole issue is policing internet speech!!!

          • mudlark2

            You obviously have never worked for a local authority or state run institution – that’s why I have to post under a pseudonym. I’m sure there are many others on this site who do so for similar reasons.

  • Bugle

    I expect these proposals are on Theresa May’s wish list.

  • Thought Criminal 99

    It looks like the UK will have to withdraw it’s signature to the UN Declaration of Human Rights.

    UN Declaration No: 19: Freedom of Expression.
    We all have the right to make up our own minds, to think what we like, to say what we think and share our ideas with other people.

    • Unfortunately the “progs” are a little more clever than that! The UDHR and the ECHR both leave significant wiggle room for states to limit speech.

    • The_Mocking_Turtle

      If you believe in unfettered and unregulated free-speech then presumably you would approve of organisations like ISIL and Al-Qaeda having free reign to say, write or broadcast whatever they want as they please? Yes? Or no? Doesn’t seem like a brilliant idea to me I have to say.

      • Andy

        They do.

        • The_Mocking_Turtle

          Not in any media that is regulated by the British government. Which is the point. The laws suggested will only affect British citizens, so if you don’t do something crazy like repeatedly threatening to assassinate the Queen, or blow-up the House of Commons, or incite violence against some private British citizen, or whatever, you will be able to carry on posting nonsense online as now.

          Hardly anybody will be affected mostly because nobody doing as I am doing now is influential enough or important enough to matter one jot.

          Buck up, folks!

          • Bugle

            You are very optimistic about handing sweeping powers to government – any government.

          • The_Mocking_Turtle

            As far as public forums go, yes. Especially frippery like Twitter. I mean who really cares if Steven Fry has fish pie or a tuna salad for lunch? Blimey!

          • Bugle

            It’s the thin end of the wedge. You know it, we all know it.

          • Phil R

            “If you’re sad, bad or mad enough to be penalised you deserve all you get in my honest opinion.”

            Commonly held view throughout history by all those willing to trade freedom for political advantage.

            Sooner or later those that oppose you will use these new restrictions against you.

          • Nockian

            As they say “I don’t mind I have nothing to hide”
            Is equivalent to “I don’t mind because I have nothing to say” which will eventually result in having nothing and saying nothing-which is exactly where those folk in the grave yard reside.

          • JabbaPapa

            (As long as slander or libel doesn’t occur.)

            You are grossly mistaken — refusing, for example, to bake a cake carrying a political slogan that you completely disagree with constitutes neither slander nor libel, but apparently constitutes so-called “homophobia”, and lands you in Court.

            You’re deluded if you think that the www (dot) thoughtpolice (dot) co (dot) uk won’t apply the same “principles” (cough !!) in their “work” …

      • Yes, I do. Do you?

        • Bugle

          So do I. That’s the price of free speech: other people saying things I find reprehensible.

      • CRSM

        Free rein. It’s a riding term.

        • The_Mocking_Turtle

          Thank you. My English isn’t perfect, sadly.

      • Thought Criminal 99

        It would be rather hard to stop Jihadis thinking and sharing ideas. But there is a chance GCHQ might hear about it, then plod can be sent around to talk to them and task them not to be so naughty.

      • Nockian

        Yes, as long as it doesn’t break existing laws of libel and incitement to violence.

        The forum must be open for those who openly challenge their ideas, which today it isn’t. Any challenge is referred to as Islamaphobia and in Germany this gets you a prison sentence.

    • Bugle

      Not in Germany apparently, where a journalist has been given six months suspended plus 100 hours community service for implying some common ground between some of those, you know, M people and some of those N people.

  • Politically__Incorrect

    So, if you’re a snowflake who’s just been told something you don’t like then those brave cops sitting on Facebook will soon be knocking on your door to take you off for political re-education at the taxpayers expense. If you’re a vulnerable, white, teenage girl who’s being used as a sex slave by a gang of muslim men, then forget it. In fact, keep your mouth shut for the sake of diversity, as Naz Shah would say. PC Plod isn’t even going yo listen to you and he may actually blame you instead.

    When the criminal justice enjoys the confidence of nobody except the protected minorities, one has to wonder how much longer can we go on like this before civil society breaks down completely and we enter a phase of serious social unrest.

  • DespiteBrexit

    Society has two important safety valves, diverting anger and resentment away from violence. These are free speech and “democracy” – at least, the belief that we can have a bit of a say from time to time and it might make a bit of a difference. The authorities are busily welding both valves shut because they don’t like steam blowing in their faces, without the faintest understanding of the longer-term consequences.
    And closing the gap between words and actions is stupid and counter-productive. If I am going to be punished for “hate speech” as much as for thumping someone, I might as well pursue the latter course of action.

    • wisestreligion

      Yes, both of those 2 safety valves, free speech and democracy, are being shut off.

      Democracy? What difference does it make if we elect team blue? Changes in our society since the start of Tony Blair’s government 20 years ago have continued without interruption under Conservative governments: mass immigration, PC police, LGBT agenda in schools. The Tory modernisers have abandoned the strong roots of Christianity and drift like flotsam down the progressive river. Acceptable thought and government policy is decided within the groupthink of Common Purpose and the BBC.

  • forgotten_man

    convictions have already happened based upon no ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ evidence at all.

  • wisestreligion

    Social sanctions have always shaped people’s behavior and beliefs. You might be mocked, shunned or put right by other people for expressing ideas too far out of step with your culture. It was, however, the people’s social control, not the State’s, even if the State and the Church had some input into our views and morals.

    We are now being taken into a world where the State intrudes into our lives replacing organically-grown people’s customs with State-directed customs. Social media began as a means for ordinary people to put their opinions into the public space. Too much freedom, apparently. The State is grabbing hold of the communication pipe from the other end to threaten and control us. We are to be shaped in our expressed thoughts and even our attitudes to conform to the liberal establishment’s current approved dogma.

    The same process is at play in how we raise our children. The State is moving into areas that have always been determined by the people’s customs. Children are taught in schools a more left-wing version of history than they would hear from their parents. The latest intrusive initiative in schools can be seen in the BBC’s No More Girls & Boys, second episode screening tonight. Participants express their surprise that behavior of children can be changed. It has brought rave reviews from the sort of people who are intoxicated by their own progressiveness and on a mission to raise the awareness of everyone else to their own exalted level, using thought police and boycotts to whip us all into line.

    What is really surprising is that the Left actually believe children can be neutral little units whose characters will be shaped purely by their own innate characteristics and preferences if we only stand back and allow these to develop without interfering to steer them in directions determined by our prejudices. The people are to be trusted less and less in their individual and family lives, because of their prejudice, while the State, in its superior enlightened attitudes, takes on more and more control.

    • lizmilton

      Have a look at the
      Frankfurt school of subversion 11point plan

      And the key objectives on UN Agenda 21

      To see where these ideas are coming from.

  • 5th column traitors

    If saying something “unpleasant” to someone invokes the same punishement as physically assaulting them then what is to discourage someone from doing the latter if they are sufficiently annoyed to do either?

    • Nockian

      Indeed, that’s what it will come to.

  • Flaketime

    Hate crime is an affront to democracy & freedom, and has no place in a civilised society. In addition to this it is also probably illegal to implement under the EU equal treatment directive.

    If I use a loaded word over the internet, then I run the risk of our oppressive state picking it up and prosecuting me. If however I use the same word or worse in a foreign language then the chance of it being picked up is next to zero.

    The top & bottom of it is that these laws are being applied only to white people, and that breaks every equality law there is – except for those of the Left who believe only white people can be guilty of these so called crimes.

    • J.L.W

      Also, if you are leftist you are likely to be celebrated for hate speech and personal attacks.

      Quite amazing the double standards.

      Leftist have attacked me so many times online. They run out of arguments and go for the person. It’s like a ‘stage’ of conversation with them.

  • Pretty Polly

    The good ship Great Britain sinks lower in the water having hit Politically Correct Rock before taking the final dive..

  • Slowcoach

    Quote: p
    ” ….This is not just totalitarianism in action but a recipe for ever angrier and more resentful behaviour….”

    She knows it, and that’s what she wants.
    That’s because she’s a practising Cultural Marxist.
    It’s quite simple.

    • Dr Evil

      Hence the peice in the Guardian……………

  • mudlark2

    Thank you Kathy for your strong and clear defence of free speech and our democratic freedoms.
    For me, the dire situation we are in can be exemplified by the incidents in Cromer last weekend, in which a group of travellers forced a small town into complete lockdown and the police refused to arrest anyone for theft or violence despite being witnesses to these crimes. At the same time, Detective Chief Constable Nick Dean warned the public ‘To put the blame completely on the travelling community as a whole is totally disproportionate’. In fact, this is a deliberate misinterpretation of the local inhabitants’ comments. They were not blaming all travellers but specifically those who came to their town to cause trouble. Rest assured though, I’m sure the police will be assiduous in arresting anyone who makes any more further intemperate comments about the travelling community.
    If a senior police officer is unable or incapable of interpreting accurately what law abiding members of the public think or say, then what chance is there to preserve our freedoms, let alone our common sense, when his role morphs into witch finder general on twitter? Senator Joseph McCarthy would be truly proud!

    • Dr Evil

      The police are really not fit for purpose any more. It is about time that the people have to take the law into their own hands and do what is best for themselves. When the police attack the victims the police should be stood down and abolished. Or the leadership should be replaced by people who have the best wishes for the community at heart and will enforce the will of the community.

      • lizmilton

        Not only the police are not fit for purpose, I fear…

        Have a look at the articles on Common Purpose on

        Bruceonpoliticsdotcom and
        Ukcolumndotorganisation

        HTH 🙂

  • Dr Evil

    What the hell is biphobic? The morbid fear os two? What does thet mean? Something weird to do with people who claim they are bisexual? This Saunders woman is attavking free speech. She makes me want to use Twitter, which I very rarely do, and pick a fight and use extreme language to provoke a reaction to get my day in court where this blithering stupidity can and should be kicked out. Sticks and stones………………

    • J.L.W

      I was going to guess at what biphobic is but I might be arrested for hate speech.

    • 5th column traitors

      I tried to read the Wikipedia page about it but my eyes started to bleed and I simply could not cope with the sheer overload of utter bollox.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biphobia

  • Nockian

    Good piece, but it misses the intention behind the action. The state, or those shadowy figures that rule the state, want to shut down free speech. All tyrants want their minions gagged and subservient, to be terrified of the consequences of daring to challenge the ruling class.

    Europe has been deluding itself that it is a bastion of free speech and open democracy for over 50 years. The obsession with tolerance has become the new spiritual morality, it is the religion of intolerance to free speech and hence it is nothing more than fascism. Fascism has been creeping up on the West by degrees, one small step at a time, fomenting some moral, or physical panic to which the state grinningly offers the solution.

    It is true to say we get the state we deserve, it isn’t the tyrants who put the chains around our necks, we gladly do it to ourselves. There isnt much time to fight back and we have only one weapon-our minds. Once we are prevented from speaking our minds, then the enlightenment is over, without mouths we will have the brutality of fists and clubs.

  • Sir_Hugo_Baskerville

    Alison Saunders makes no law.
    She enacts Amber Rudd’s and Theresa May’s anti-free-speech laws.

    • Bugle

      Also, don’t forget mission creep. Not long ago, David Cameron introduced his ‘anti-terrorism’ measures, which included ‘British values’ and ‘tolerance’. The next thing you know, Nicky Morgan – then at Education – announced that homophobia could be a sign of ‘extremism’. I said to friends and family at the time, they will use extremism as a pretext to shut down religious schools which have nothing to do with Islam or terrorism. Friends and family thought I was mad. Posts on Guido and here elicited little response, I assume because people do not see that they are next. Anyway, next thing you know, they’re going after faith schools, Christian and Jewish.

      I have little doubt that Saunder’s pronouncements are synchronised with Theresa May’s agenda. Input from the DPP is intended to add an appearance of gravitas and neutrality (hollow laughter). It is also noteworthy that efforts in Britain are being pushed forward in concert with other countries’ measures to censor the internet, stamp out ‘Islamophobia’, and push the trans-identity issue: Germany and the EU, Canada, certain US states. If anyone does not think this part of a global agenda, they’re blind.

      A government which uses the pretext of Islamic terrorism to coerce and censor others who are literally nothing-to-do-with-Islam is profoundly dishonest and not to be trusted at all. Give them an inch and they will take a mile.

      • Exactly!?

      • lizmilton

        Agree entirely…

        Have you read “2030: your children’s future in Islamic Britain” by David Vincent ?
        He gives facts and figures on May handing out British passports “like confetti” while in the HO…

        Terrorists are deliberately being allowed into the EU and UK… see “Migrants are an underground army” to see how policing is being manipulated…

        Also worth looking at… The Frankfurt school of subversion 11 point plan” to understand the transgender issues etc etc

        As for the global agenda, have a look at the key objectives of UN Agenda 21 on

        Ukcolumndotorganisation

        Whichever way you look at it, the future is grim.

  • J.L.W

    I had this dream last night where a work colleague was showing me a book about how society destroys itself.

    Time to sign off twitter I think, or at least be ready to do so at a moments notice. I only ever go on it for self promotion anymore. I prefer Gab (where this stuff is less likely to happen), I don’t go on facebook much either.

    I’m quite sure nothing I said will be under these codes because, I am not a leftist I don’t go for the person I go for the argument. Still though, twitter definitely does not feel safe.

    A guy just down the road from me was charged with hate speech. two or three years. Said something along the lines of put Muslims on a bonfire.

  • JabbaPapa

    Here’s another crappy Le Monde article — http://www.lemonde.fr/pixels/article/2017/08/24/derriere-l-alt-right-cinq-grandes-mouvances-qui-convergent_5176064_4408996.html

    It seems to be veering hard left in the wake of jumping onto the Hate-Trump bandwagon — such a shame, it was probably the last remaining bastion of classical European journalistic integrity …

  • JabbaPapa

    She had not a thought in her head that was not a slogan, and there was no imbecility, absolutely none, that she was not capable of swallowing if the Party handed it out to her.” Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four

    The phrase “hate crime” basically just means thoughtcrime.

  • JabbaPapa

    Cripes these online leftards are moronic —

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DH2NzndWAAQTUMY.jpg

  • MorganCourtenay

    Very troubling. When you start policing thoughts, where do you draw the line? There are many people who have thoughts that I consider contemptible and unacceptable. But I do not seek to control those thoughts, just as I would have no one control mine. There is already a report option for Tweets that spread hatred or use degrading abuse against a particular group of people. Why si that not sufficient? The root cause is the fact that we are less sociable as a nation because we are less connected, and the solution is to rag on someone online, rather than explore constructive methods of releasing anger and frustration. Instead of policing thought, why doesn’t Saunders discuss the harmful effects of over-exposure to social media (just ask the many celebrities who have quit because of pathetic bullying behaviour) and encourage people to use their time online in a more economical and productive fashion? Or would that be too simple?