Friday, 29 April 2011

New Paradigms in Policing

New paradigms in Policing seem to be being set in place recently. For whatever reason, the Police are attending operations in disproportionately greater numbers than before, responding dissent with a disproportionately violent response, or even arresting people before no crime has been committed.

For example the farce last week in Bristol, where heavy-handed Police thugs decided to attend what should have been a simple eviction in huge numbers, triggering an understandable questioning public response, which waqs then responded to by the Police in a most disporportionate manner. Now this week's protest about the Police thuggery has been met yet again with a heavy-handed response.

Then we have Charlie Veitch of the Love Police being arrested before any crime is committed, charged with "conspiracy to cause a public nuisance", whatever that is. Maybe if this suddenly-found power of arrest before someone went out and made loud noises in public were applied more often to more every-day nuisances, the Police might just have more sympathy from me. As it is, they just come over as heavy-handed thugs yet again.

This new policy of over-reaction doesn't seem to be limited to England either: Police in Glasgow send in the horses to break up an "illegal" street party in a park. It looks like the Police decided to break up an unofficial party in Kelvingrove Park, but the party-goers told them to go away in no uncertain terms. The Police decided then to send in the horses to break up the gathering. Why the heavy-handed tactics yet again? Why not just do as is normally done at raves and the like, with a Police cordon turning new arrivals away and making sure anyone leaving doesn't come back?
I do love the bit in the report from the council noting that official organisers need to do health and safety stuff and have insurance. In this case totally irrelevant because it wasn't organised as such: just a few thousand people turned up of their own free will.

But back to the point: there seems very recently a change in policing, with far more "robust" tactics involved in dealing with public gatherings and individuals suspected of causing a nuisance. Were I conspiracy theorist, I'd say it was a deliberate attempt to whip up trouble where non existed in order to justify the continued funding of the Police on its current massive scale.

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