Anti-radicalisation chief says ministers’ plans risk creating ‘thought police’

May 27, 2016 by

by Vikram Dodd, Guardian: The police chief leading the fight to stop people becoming terrorists has said government plans targeting alleged extremists are so flawed they risk creating a “thought police” in Britain. Simon Cole, the police lead for the government’s own Prevent anti-radicalisation programme, said that the plans may not be enforceable and risk making police officers judges of “what people can and can not say”. His comments in a Guardian interview expose opposition in part of...

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The Human Rights Act is no friend of freedom

May 13, 2016 by

By Luke Gittons, Spiked: The debate around the European Union has been accompanied by a renewed debate on the Human Rights Act 1998. Depending on who you listen to, Britain’s adherence to European human-rights legislation is either catastrophic or essential. On the one hand, it is argued that human-rights law prevents the government extraditing dangerous criminals, demolishes our national borders and substantially weakens the sovereignty of the UK’s parliament and judiciary. On the other hand,...

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Think extremism’s a crime? You’ll change your mind when they come for YOU

May 8, 2016 by

by Peter Hitchens, Mailonline: As an extremist, I am very worried about the planned Extremism Bill, which our Prime Minister is about to ram through Parliament. So should you be. You are probably extremists, too, or will soon become extremists. You may well remember when many opinions now viewed as despicable and more or less criminal were freely expressed – often by the same people and media who now condemn them. I certainly do. Much of the conservative patriotic Christianity which my...

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“Shut Up, Bigot!”: Civil Rights and Same-Sex Marriage

Apr 14, 2016 by

by Ben R Crenshaw, Public Discourse: Supporters of “same-sex marriage” claim that its opponents are bigots, like racists or misogynists, whose views should not be tolerated in the public square. In fact, marriage traditionalists are not bigoted but rather are realistic and honest about what marriage actually is. In a Public Discourse essay last year, “Shut Up, Bigot!”: The Intolerance of Tolerance, I addressed how defenders of marriage are often called bigots for holding the view that marriage...

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Let’s hit the terrorists where it hurts

Mar 25, 2016 by

by Brendan O’Neill, spiked: The barbarism in Brussels, a grotesque, misanthropic assault on flyers and commuters, has sent shockwaves through Europe. Many feel scared. Will London be next? Or Paris again? There’s already heated talk about what needs to change after the Brussels bloodshed. Perhaps border controls in Europe should be tightened. Given that the airport bombings took place in the check-in area, before security, maybe we need security checks at the very entrances to airports....

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How about we ‘defend European values’ by not arresting people who say stupid things?

Mar 25, 2016 by

by Brendan O’Neill, Spectator: After terrorist outrages like the one in Brussels, our leaders always say the same thing: ‘We must defend European values against these evil killers.’ It seems the Metropolitan Police didn’t get the memo. For they have just arrested someone — actually arrested someone — for tweeting something unpleasant about the Brussels attack, in the process trampling their coppers’ boots all over what is surely, or at least ought to be, the most important European value...

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