Life, liberty, disambiguation / @Graham Marsden
"And to those slagging off Liberty, you are really missing the point."
Just so there's no ambiguity, I'm not slagging off Liberty et al because I don't like them, because I do. And Shami Chakrabarti can protect my human rights any time, rrrrrrr.
I just feel that :
A) They aren't making their argument very well, due to the massive holes in the HRA that were presumably drafted in just to make sure that it doesn't, in fact, actually grant any rights that justify the name, and simply citing it leaves them open to the kind of rebuttal I described.
B) That simply by using the term, rather than by playing it a bit smart and using something else as a jumping off point, they alienate many people. From those who have some understanding of the act (Guardianistas who will talk about balancing of rights, but think theirs come out on top, smug bastards) thru Daily Mail/Express (etc) Readers and BNP members (insert your own Venn diagram here) who have allowed themselves to be convinced that the HRA is somehow a villain's charter by people whom it prevents from reporting every tedious tantalising titbit of other's private lives (Desmond, Rothermere, Dacre, etc) and/or being beastly to darkies, cripples, jews, women and foreigners (Griffin et al, also q.v previous parens), depending on the coords in the diagram you just drew.
A is a problem with the legislation.
B is an unpleasant fact of life, made bitterly ironic by the fact that the above listed people are likely to be the first to shrill off about _their_ rights being violated (in fact, their opposition to the HRA actually revolves around exactly this, if only they were able to get their heads around that fact, q.v. also various comments), as rather neatly illustrated by the BNP invoking it recently after having campaigned against it for so long.
There's scope for a rational, measured debate about the use of such devices, and all similar measures, but it's borked when you start it by invoking the HRA, because A means the govt will just tell you to fuck off and mind your own business while they take action to prevent crime and disorder, which is very voter friendly, thank you very much. And B means that the vicious slavering mob will say "yeah, to right", seasoning with infantile racial epithets to taste. Bastards. they might even toss in the word "communist" if they're a total and utter fuckwit.
To further disambiguate, I personally think it's a repugnant idea that we somehow start to target some section of the population (any section) and remove their rights because we don't like them, which is what this is all about, even if it's being done in such a cak handed way as to end up effecting everybody. Firstly, because if you have a disenfranchised, alienated group (again, this is, in reality, the hypothetical target of such measures), treating them like shit is not going to help re-enfranchise or un-alienate them, quite the opposite, and secondly because if you pick a section of the populace and remove their 'human rights', or simply treat them as described and forget about the emotive terminology, you dehumanise them.
If you dehumanise them, you make them no better than cattle.
If they are no better than cattle, then it's OK to load them onto trains and ... well, we know where this goes.
"Liberty is protecting your rights too whether you realise it or not."
Now, begin the flamefest, all those who think I've unjustly called them a Nazi.