When someone says something derogatory about someone they might be being discriminatory or they might just be merely descriptive. If what the person is saying is true – after all we have libel and slander laws which recognise the difference between people who tell the truth about someone and people who tell lies – then the statement is justified. No person nor group of people should be allowed to hide their criminal and/or anti-social behaviour behind a claim that telling the truth about them amounts to discrimination.
For example if someone said – gypsies are criminals, blacks are drug dealers, men are rapists – that is discriminatory and prejudiced. However to say that gypsies are disproportionately involved in the crimes of pick-pocketing and vandalism in comparison with other groups. That black people have more people involved with selling drugs at street level, that young white males are the major category of burglars and that most people who rape women and sexually prey on children are men rather than women, that is simply describing what is happening and the people engaged in it. In factual terms it should be no different than saying more men than women engage in mountain climbing and more women than men wear make-up.
The problem is politics, political power, and closely bonded groups with xenophobic attitudes towards other groups, soon muddy the picture. Then we see such arguments as to why there are not equal numbers of shelters for battered men? The answer is for the same reason we don’t have an equal number of prison places for women – because men as a class commit approximately eight times the numbers of crimes than do women as a class. However, this is not reflected in general lower status for men, because their greater social and political power relative to women counteracts that effect.
Criminals as a group are hyper alert to threat and aggressively defend themselves, so it is not surprising that closely bonded social groups with strong involvements in criminal activities, are aggressively defensive when accused. My group right or wrong is also a factor. Even if the entire group is not involved in crime, often they shelter the guilty and partake of the plunder.
Censorship of free speech, by which I mean the right of anyone to describe a factual event as it happened needs to be upheld. The alternative is criminals force the populace to wear blinkers increasing the blind areas in which they can freely commit their crimes.
And given that an entire social class is stigmatised with the continuous suspicion of criminality when they are no more engaged in crime than anyone else – the working class – and the innocent are not granted the politically correct protection of the many groups who are guilty – the right idea of removing unjustified social stigma from those irrationally discriminated against has clearly back-fired. Now we are not allowed to point the finger at the guilty, but prejudice against the innocent is totally accepted.
So, the public are expected to believe that the criminal who threw a brick through Mr Din’s window, was so offended by the sign Mr Din displayed over the broken window, that on his own initiative he went to the police to complain that his feelings were hurt? And it didn’t occur to him that admitting to the crime would result in him being caught?
Let me suggest a more likely course of events. When the police ignore crimes against ordinary people, they don’t like the victims of crime drawing attention to a crime they couldn’t be bothered solving. It wasn’t the victim who was offended by the sign but the police who were losing face.
It is not then a surprise that having found the perp they didn’t prosecute him, but prosecuted the victim. And it is not a surprise that it looks like they couldn’t be bothered finding the perp until Mr Din publicly embarrassed them.
And the police wonder why people think they are on the side of the criminals.
Mr Din was on the right track. Perhaps if every victim of crime posted a notice in their window explaining the crime and how it hasn’t been dealt with, they would get a response. (Hopefully not along the lines of grass-up police failures and you’re nicked).