Cracking Down On ‘Unauthorized’ Dissent

April 16th, 2007 by Andy in Free Speech Zones

From the home country of George Orwell, Mark Thomas describes Britain’s ongoing descent into police state with this update of the “Serious Organised Crime and Police Act”, Britain’s new version of our so-called “Patriot” Act (with emphasis on the word “act”).

Welcome to the world of the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act.

This is the law that requires you to get permission from the police to demonstrate in Parliament Square. However, what counts as a demonstration according to the police is one person with a banner or one person with a badge standing in Parliament Square for just one minute.

Being arrested for wearing a badge or a T shirt seems a tad Kim Jong Il to me.

These are strange times and we have a strange law- its a mix of Kafkaesque absurdism and British bureaucratic prowess which has lead us to the state where a woman was threatened with arrest for having a picnic in Parliament Square. Her cake had the word PEACE iced upon it and the police insisted this counted as an unauthorised political protest.

The law has seen Maya Evans arrested and convicted for reading out the names of Iraqi and British war dead by the Cenotaph.

Where’s V when you need him?

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