By Mike Speakman; Retired Deputy Chief Constable, Policing Spokesman
15th February 2020
In recent years, it has sometimes been said, with a sense of irony, that George Orwell’s 1984 was written as fiction, not an implementation manual. This message did not get through to many establishment organisations, including Humberside Police. I served in Humberside Police from 1995 to 2000 as both Assistant and Deputy Chief Constable. This forces behaviour as recently highlighted is nothing short of appalling and I am quite distressed at what they have become. But I should acknowledge that the problem is not confined to Humberside alone, the country’s police forces are infected with the same virus.
Harry Miller, an ex-Humberside police officer, under the umbrella organisation which he set up called “Fair Cop” was in court yesterday to hear judgement passed on a case he brought last year challenging the way Humberside Police implemented the College of Policing’s Hate Crime guidance, and also challenging that Guidance itself.
Harry had shared a tweet and written some himself which called into question the latest craze of multiple trans identities. One woman/man/it complained. The police went to Mr. Millers workplace and subsequently interviewed him and told him that the incident was being recorded as a “none crime hate incident” in accordance with College of Policing guidance. Such findings could subsequently be disclosed to potential employers in a DBS check, even though no offence had been committed. There is no objective test to a “Hate Crime” it only needs one person to perceive it as such.
In common with most police officers. Harry has a strong sense of justice and took exception to the action of Humberside police. He founded Fair Cop and using his own money and crowdfunding took the case to court. In delivering Judgement in favour of Mr. Miller, Justice Knowles actually quoted George Orwell and compared Humberside Police to the Stasi and the Gestapo. He concluded that Humberside Police were unlawfully trying to restrict Mr. Millers freedom of expression. He did not however find that the College of Policing’s guidance in itself was unlawful. He has fast tracked the issue to the Supreme Court, so we are not at the end and there is a way to go yet.
Many of us in our party have been subjected to constraints on our freedom of expression, whether it be being de-platformed at universities, venues surrendering to the threats of violence from the left and police forces refusing to protect our right to hold meetings to name but a few. So, this issue goes to the very heart of our democracy and a right to express views that others disagree with. It’s probably one of the most important issues of our time.
The role of the Police in all this is very troubling. Police forces are actively siding with various extreme groups against others whom they do not support. The police service is not impartial in this debate and there appears to be some centralised coordination across forces which favours some groups over others.
The Police role in social media also needs examining. I do not believe the police should be responsible for what goes on Twitter or Facebook. The police role in monitoring communications goes back to a time when messages were written on paper, put in an envelope, addressed, a stamp was purchased and a trip to the post box was involved. Any such message had thought, and energy expended on it. Now a casual drunken few thumb presses can convey the same words, even though there is no requirement on the recipient to actually read it. We are also now entitled to take offence at anything. I think the Police involvement in social media is a perversion of the role and does indeed take sources away from issues that really matter and used to be at the core of policing activity. It cannot be right for the police to refuse to attend a domestic burglary but will turn up if you are thinking “wrongly” in their opinion.
Now we shouldn’t blame all police officers for this, although it seems some have become religious zealots in pursuing people who express a different opinion. The problem lies in the management levels and the mechanisms that have been put in place to centralise thinking across the service. The college of policing and the Home Office being the prime drivers.
I still have faith in the basic bobby, who understands right from wrong, still has a sense of justice but is pressured to follow the politically correct orthodoxy that infects all public services. I know harry Miller has the support of thousands of serving and retired officers who have helped fund him and supported him with information. Harry’s campaign has only just started, he has other organisations in his sights who are using their charitable status to pursue political agendas, and this is illegal. This campaign has a long way to go.
Across the country beacons of resistance are being lit, whether it be about grooming gangs and corrupted policing, University de-platforming or promotion of transsexual migration in schools.
For Britain will play its part.
Retired Deputy Chief Constable
The For Britain Movement