Getting Irate So That You Don't Have To

Getting Irate So That You Don't Have To

Monday, 8 October 2007

Charting The Crackdown On Freedom

This government has many many attempts to place restrictions on freedom of speech and expression, and they're at it again today.

The Stop the War Coalition (StWC) have, for the past two months, been planning a march from Trafalgar Square to Parliament Square. Early meetings with the police to agree the details were amicable. Then last week StWC were told that they wouldn't not be allowed into Parliament Square, on the basis of an act drawn up during the Chartists' revolts, supposedly to ensure that MPs can get into Parliament. A police spokesman is quoted as saying that the order had been invoked "to uphold access and egress for MPs and peers in order to protect the democratic process".

I don't suppose that this change in heart last week from the police could have had anything to do with the fact at the time GB might have been expecting to call a general election, and he wouldn't want embarrassing pictures of a mass demonstration outside Parliament at the time he's making his Iraq statement, could it ?

It's already illegal under legislation introduced in 2005 by Tony Blair to demonstrate within 1km of Parliament without official police permission - hence the abhorent sight of a peace campaigner being arrested (and convicted) for standing by the Cenotaph reading the names of our Iraq war dead. Now the government is dusting off another piece of legislation to make making one's point just that little bit harder.

StWC say they're going to march anyway. Good luck to them.

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