March 24, 2009

Comment: No time to let hatred prosper

A hearty well done to Merseyside Police for their swift and decisive response to the case of PC Steve Bettley. Bettley’s name was on a document which listed 12,000 people who were alleged to be members of the unsavoury British National Party. Over the weekend, Merseyside Police announced PC Bettley had been dismissed from his position.

This is both a sensible and laudable action. PC Bettley’s representation maintains he was not knowingly a member and has tabled its intention to appeal. That is their prerogative and if they have a solid case then an equally solid case for re-instatement is obvious. However, until that point is reached Merseyside Police have taken the only acceptable course, and that is to dismiss.

The BNP’s politics of poison have no place in modern society. Their fundamental bigotry is fuel on the fires of hatred that will bring Enoch Powell’s 1968 ‘Rivers of Blood’ Speech to reality.

Racial harmony in this country is in an state of uneasy peace. Mass unemployment of the like not seen since the early 1980s may shatter that peace with an immigrant labour force as the focus for malevolence and bitterness.

Two million jobless shows how close that scenario may loom. We must crack down on breeding grounds for hatred and violence. The BNP will bristle with indignation, and claim their opposition to both, but their very existence creates the anti-matter of protesters who will ensure violence whenever the two sides should collide.

We cannot allow the hatred breathing space. Police forces have long been held to be bastions of red-necked intolerance. Merseyside Police’s actions over the weekend have shown it is not an institution to allow those perceptions to linger or fester.

Liverpool Daily Post

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