Monday, November 12, 2007

Sir Ian Blair: end the persecution of a good cop

Sir Ian Blair, Metropolitan Police Commissioner, is the most progressive police office to have ever held the post as London's top cop - so it is no surprise that the right wing press are out to get him.

That they should be prepared to stoop so low as to use the Jean Charles de Menezes tragedy against him just exposes the depth of their hypocrisy and criminal irresponsibility.

London's mayor Ken Livingstone is absolutely right to defend Sir Ian, and so should all progressive and decent people. Currently we have an unholy alliance of the right wing and all the usual cop haters on the left screaming for blood; it is an utterly disgusting spectacle of the lowest forms of political life in action.

Dose anyone, except the most deranged conspiracy anorak nerd, seriously believe the police shot an innocent person on purpose? The fact is that the very brave officers involved believed the London Underground was again under attack only days after an despicable outrage that killed and wounded a large number of innocent working people.

They deserve support and understanding, not the mean minded insults to their integrity that have been leveled against them. The recent court case against the Met for the crime of putting the public in danger was a total farce and should never have happened. It was Health & Safety gone mad. Of course the public are going to be put in danger when you are fighting a war on the streets of London against suicide bombers!

The two most common reactions to death are guilt and anger. Unfortunately instead of seeing Jean Charles de Menezes death as a terrible tragedy for all concerned (including those who killed him), many people have allowed the easiest emotions to rule; anger and the blame game.

Here at the 'schmoontherun' safe house we support the rule of law because the rule of law is necessary to protect the liberty of the individual. Of course nothing is perfect, and the rule of law and justice in Britain is certainly not perfect.

But that does not mean liberal and progressive people should allow themselves to be sucked into bigoted prejudice against the police.

It is thanks to people like Sir Ian Blair that the Metropolitan police have dramatically improved over the last few years. I remember the time in the 60's & 70's when the only thing wrong with calling the police 'pigs' was that it was an insult to pigs. There are very few 'pigs' in the police now, and 'schmoontherun' has no problem in being able to say in 2007 'I love cops'.

The police do a vital and dangerous job, often with amazing patience and good humor as well as bravery, and we should have the guts to give them the appreciation they deserve.

The last thing we need now is for Sir Ian to be removed by a howling lynch mob led by the likes of the Daily Mail & Telegraph 'pigs' who hate him because he is a liberal cop. Heaven help us if they ever gained the power to decide who runs London's police service.

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