Fuck you, Shami Chakrabarti
She’s a totemic figure to many claimed liberals, and most on the Left, she even entered a loose alliance with David Davis back in his campaign against detention without trial, but ye gods Shami Chakrabarti gets on my tits. The smug way she announces her morally unimpeachable drive to ensure terrorists get human rights, but ordinary Brits don’t, is increasingly sliding from irritating to enraging. Her instance, as on the Today prog this morning, that the UK must ‘subject itself’ to the European Court of Human Rights and that our government shouldn’t seek to, essentially, repatriate powers, is of course profoundly anti-democratic – and yet Shami, isn’t the notion of self-determination pretty high up in the ECHR? And then there’s the sure and certain knowledge that one day soon, we’ll see Baroness Shami sitting in the Lords, even grander, even higher, even mightier. I reckon there are more seats in westminster reserved for former directors of Liberty than there are for bishops.
What particularly galls is the selective attention of Liberty. If we genuinely did have the human rights put forward by the UDHR and ECHR, for all, then all might be well. But we do not, and she doesn’t seek that – and a prime example came out this morning. Mona Siddiqui on Thought for the Day had asked her fellow Muslims to be a little more tolerant, to stop rushing to the courts and the police to persecute those they reckon insult them – her immediate subject was the outrageous treatment of David Jones at Gatwick, subjected to unlawful detention and ordered to apologise for supposedly insulting a muslim security guard by joking about veils, but Siddiqui’s points applied just as well to the current madness in Afghanistan where burning a book generated protests and attacks that have cost dozens of lives. Mona’s mike slid down, and Shami’s fired up, and it struck me, had Shami said anything about David Jones? Nope. A man was detained against his will by airport security staff, for committing no crime, in the presence of a police officer, told that these days there are things you are not allowed to say in this country, and was ordered to apologise – and to Shami, this is no breach of human rights. Not worthy of comment. But kicking out a convicted terrorist who has no right to be in this country… is a breach? It’s not as if she’s been too busy – she found time to complain about Occupy London’s empty tents being recycled…
If you wanted to devalue and degrade the very concept of human rights, you’d go about it Liberty’s way. Pick your lacework of supported rights, for the correct kind of people, screech hoarsely about them, and ignore the majority. Ignore and downplay our traditional English valu e- free speech. Demand in fact that this right for the individual is outweighed by the rights of a religion – wasn’t the ECHR meant to defend the individual against the mob Shami? I’d support, broadly, the ECHR patchwork of rights – not as rights, but as goals a liberal country should strive for. But I can’t support Liberty’s narrowing of scope, it’s shallow and authoritarian vision of our permitted freedoms. This is not an organisation that is aiming to develop English liberty, and she is no fucking liberal.