Here, have a slightly adapted form of a brief rant I just had on Twitter.
@unfortunatalie reported David Cameron as saying: “No human rights concerns will get in the way of bringing these people to justice.” (By “these people”, he means those who have been rioting, looting, and vandalising bits of London this past week.)
Did he really say that? I’ve already got a headache, otherwise I’d bang it on something.
I’ll try an analogy. Claiming to cherish free speech is only meaningful if you defend it most strongly for speech you find vile and hateful. As Greta Christina points out, any free speech law:
wasn’t written to protect our right to say that puppies are cute and apple pie is delicious.
Similarly, we don’t venerate human rights solely for the sake of lovely old ladies doing some knitting. They’re to protect suspected criminals too. It’s so we don’t behave inhumanly to those we believe have wronged us, and who we might be tempted to see as less than human.
So if Cameron’s really promising not to let human rights stand in the way of justice, I reject any claim he might make to care a jot for either humans or rights.
Right. Ill-informed and idealistic social tirade ACCOMPLISHED. Time for a cup of tea.