Why is Stella Creasy shutting down debate?

Oct 11, 2019 by

by Paul Embery, UnHerd:

Stella Creasy is a high-profile elected public official; a member of parliament; a lawmaker who wields far more clout than most of us could ever dream of. As an architect of legislation designed to end restrictions on abortion in Northern Ireland, Creasy has found herself on the end of some rough stuff from pro-life campaigners.

As Elizabeth Oldfield so elegantly noted last week, the debate around abortion inflames passions and polarises opinion. For as long as one side believes in the sacred principle of women’s autonomy, and the other the sanctity of the life of the unborn, there can be no rapprochement. That’s the hard truth. But the campaigners against Creasy appear at least to have acted lawfully and peaceably throughout, even if their message has been hard-hitting and their tactics designed to shock.

Now, Creasy is perfectly entitled to defend her corner against her critics and advance her arguments for driving the legislation through parliament. That would be the sensible thing to do. But, of course, honest debate and disagreement around contentious issues are, in this day and age, no longer permissible. Someone somewhere has to be found guilty of peddling ‘hate’, or something.

So Creasy decided against entering into a reasoned dialogue with her opponents, and instead chose to solicit the assistance of the Metropolitan Police in having the protest shut down and the perpetrators run out of town. You read that right. A member of parliament, a legislator, a public representative at the highest level, demanded that the police intervene to prevent peaceable individuals from publicly campaigning for a position with which she disagreed.

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