Tuesday, 5 March 2013

When did 'unkempt' become a racial insult?

By Richard Littlejohn, Daily Mail

A former Government Education Minister has been subjected to a humiliating six-month ‘racism’ investigation after describing a constituent as ‘unkempt’.

Tim Loughton, Conservative MP for East Worthing and Shoreham-by-Sea, was interviewed under caution by detectives for 90 minutes.

Officers also questioned Mr Loughton’s staff and trawled through his archives for ‘evidence’. They were acting on a complaint from a well-known local nutter, who claimed that the MP insulted his ethnic heritage.

Kieran Francis, who says that he is a Romany gypsy on his mother’s side, accused Mr Loughton of being ‘disrespectful’ and calling him ‘dirty’.

This deeply sinister chain of events began when Mr Loughton became involved in a dispute over Mr Francis being evicted from his allotment by the local council.

Other allotment-holders complained that he was using human excrement on his compost heap, a charge he denies. Mr Francis then got into an altercation with an official from the allotment department.

Mr Francis emailed Mr Loughton, to protest about his treatment at the hands of the council, which identified him as a ‘difficult resident’. He took particular exception to one document which described him as ‘unkempt’.

This wasn’t the first time the MP had heard from Mr Francis, who has regularly contacted his office with a series of complaints about the council, the NHS, the benefits agency, the courts and even the police.

He says Mr Francis had subjected his staff to taunts and bad language, occasionally reducing them to tears.

Finally, Mr Loughton snapped. He wrote back saying that he agreed with the council’s description of Mr Francis as ‘unkempt’ given that the dictionary defines the word as ‘untrimmed, dishevelled and rough’.

Looking at the picture of Mr Francis in the Mail on Sunday, ‘unkempt’ would appear to be a reasonable opinion of his appearance. He has a beard and long, straggly hair, which appears to have been tied back in a ponytail. He is dressed in a crumpled leather jacket, cargo pants and sneakers and one of those daft, Soviet-style caps which used to be popular with folk singers in the Sixties.

For good measure, Mr Loughton added this complaint was yet ‘another example of the whingeing, self-serving, poisonous b******s that seem to have become your trademark’.

He said later: ‘I’d had enough of this guy. I felt the council had acted legitimately and I uniquely decided to use some of his own style of language to reinforce my point.’

After sending the email, Mr Loughton was contacted by a Detective Inspector from Sussex Police who wanted to speak to him in connection with allegations of a ‘criminal nature’.

He was put into a custody suite at Worthing nick and told he was being investigated under the Malicious Communications Act.

Mr Loughton was shown a document which read: ‘Mr Francis states that he is of Romany Gypsy origin and feels that references made to him are of a racist nature and that the email contains personal insults of a grossly offensive nature.’

The MP said he had no idea what Mr Francis’s ethnic origins may or may not be.

But even if he had, how does calling him ‘unkempt’ amount to ‘racism’ and what has a dispute over an allotment got to do with the Old Bill?

Understandably, Mr Loughton is furious and is demanding an explanation from the Chief Constable.

He may be disappointed. Sussex Police have so far refused to answer any questions about the length or cost of the investigation, which could run to as much as £100,000. He won’t get much joy from the Crown Prosecution Service, either, even though no charges are being preferred.

The CPS said: ‘These were serious allegations and the matter was thoroughly reviewed.’

No, they weren’t. The only ‘serious’ aspect is the outrageous decision of the police to treat a blameless Member of Parliament like a criminal and accuse him of ‘racism’ on the basis of a vexatious and malicious complaint from a serial grievance-monger.

Maybe Sussex police had read about the Met officers who tried to fit up the former Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell recently and fancied a Tory scalp of their own. My guess would be that the Chief Constable thoroughly approves of the investigation, which is in line with the police’s ‘best practice’ on ‘diversity’.

As the unfortunate Mr Loughton correctly surmises: ‘Because of the merest hint of racism and the sensitivity towards travellers, the police go into overdrive.’

If you’re burgled or have your car stolen, you’ll be lucky to get a note for the insurance. But claim that you’re half-Romany and someone’s been rude to you and the police will drop everything to investigate.

All Sussex’s officers will have been indoctrinated about ‘diversity’ on some expensive training course, just like every other copper in Britain.

And the way they ‘celebrate diversity’ is by feeling the collar of anyone who is accused of showing ‘disrespect’ to someone who, however tenuously, defines himself as a member of a ‘vulnerable and persecuted’ minority group.

Some readers may remember Northants Police scouring a Basil Brush video for evidence of ‘racism’ after a complaint from a travellers’ representative.

At the time, it seemed like a joke. No one’s laughing now, certainly not Tim Loughton MP.

The DI who interviewed Mr Loughton will probably get a commendation and be fast-tracked up the promotion ladder.

The new breed of chief police officers are no longer old-fashioned thief-takers. They seem to have landed fully-formed and brainwashed from Planet Plod and are more interested in appeasing their political puppet-masters than serving the people who pay their wages.

They may not police the streets much any more, but they are determined to police our thoughts, our speech and rummage through our online communications.

What were Sussex Police expecting to uncover by trawling through an MP’s emails? It was a fishing expedition to try to build a case. The intent is not to ‘investigate’ it is to intimidate, pure and simple.

The once-proud and admired British police have been hollowed out by the Guardianistas and converted into a vehicle for bringing politically-motivated prosecutions against anyone deemed to have offended against the new social orthodoxy.

Fall foul of them and it can cost your reputation, your liberty and your job.
A Scottish police chaplain has just been sacked because his opposition to gay marriage, expressed on his own private blog, doesn’t conform to Strathclyde Police’s ‘equality and diversity’ policies.

This was despite the Government promising that no one should be forced out of their job for opposing same-sex weddings.

When Andrew Mitchell was hounded from office on the basis of false, but politically damaging, allegations, the question was asked: if the police are prepared to fit up the Chief Whip, who is safe any more?

After Tim Loughton’s ordeal over trumped-up allegations of ‘racism’, the answer has to be: absolutely no one.
Be afraid, be very afraid.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2288126/When-did-unkempt-racial-insult.html#ixzz2MfYmQHWu
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