21 May 2011

Quietly Introducing Armed Police on Tubes

Justification of arming British Police forces grows stronger every day.

This week, it is arming British Transport Police on the Tube.

The justification, it seems, is the threat of a Mumbai-style terrorism attack.

We could of course, nod sagely and accept the carrying of guns by our police on such spurious arguments, because, they know best. And I do think the police resolve some terrorism threats without the issue ever coming to the public knowledge.

But I also feel terrorism is used as a whip with which to supress public objection to procedure, the banning of protesting on parliament square, for example.

The last time armed officers were on the tube, they killed an innocent man because of significant and terribe miscommunications. Charles de Menezes and the protection of civillians is an on going.

On the basis that guns protect people, we should all be locked up, have ID cards and be monitored every second by a government to "protect us".

Britain has managed to get so far without armed police, and I am loathe to see such a freedom erroded by spurious claims of terrorist threats.

And let's look at those threats, shall we?

Mumbai Terrorist Attacks in 2008 were cordinated threats across the city, targeting hotels, taxis and a port. At no point did they attack the city's transport infrastructure.

By this reasoning, should we not be arming police on the docks, and at every hotel?

The threat and the justification is weak and unrealistic, and, I fear, an excuse to gradually introduce more and more weapons in to national security.


  1. But Kelly, is that not how freedoms are curtailed, on the threat that something might happen, be said etc?

    "The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary."
    H.L. Mencken

  2. Violently agreeing with me again David?


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