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The UK's premier new media criminologist - on Twitter @criminology4u, facebook and blogging on Criminology in Public and Sports Criminology.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Fascinating Post on Crime and Criminal Justice by right-wing commentator Peter Hitchens - brother of the more famous Christopher. The full text is below. He makes an interesting point about the force used by police against Mark Saunders (but might have mentioned others, like Jean Charles de Menezes) and points out that hanging - of which he is an ardent supporter - followed trial and appeal etc. I think he is right on the judge dredd/robocop developments (though he's not used nor would understand such popular cultural references) but wrong to think the corollary of his argument would be bring back hanging end police 'executions'. It seems as likely now that we'd end up with judicial and extra-judicial deaths.

A good example of nostalgic conservative 'criminology'.

So this is Liberal Britain: execution by masked gunmen

The masked avengers of the Metropolitan Police’s firearms squads scare the pants off me. It’s not just the street-fighting gear they sport, clothes designed to give the wearer a feeling of irresponsibility.

It’s not just the IRA-style facewear. It’s not just the huge numbers of them – enough to invade Sierra Leone once the Army’s been disbanded by George Osborne. It’s not even the anonymity most of them are granted, like something out of the Middle Ages.

It’s the fact that nobody notices. Liberal fanatics abolished hanging in this country nearly 50 years ago. Yet when we had the gallows, our police were unarmed. And if the state wanted to kill someone, it could only do so after a jury trial, an appeal and
the chance of clemency. This was called ‘obscene’ and ‘barbaric’.

Now we have a heavily-armed police force whose members, masked like Henry VIII’s headsmen, deal out death as helicopters thunder overhead – no jury, no judge, no appeal. And those who said capital punishment was wicked refuse to see the connection.

Oh, and please note the crazed, shotgun-wielding barrister Mark Saunders was taking ‘anti-depressants’ – another connection everyone refuses to see.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-1317162/Why-bleating-sheep-decide-runs-Labour-Party.html#ixzz11Q10kw2C

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