One of the gleaming achievements of America’s Founders is the First Amendment to the Constitution, stating that Congress shall make no Law…….. abridging Freedom of Speech. Would that we here within the British Isles had such a protection! We don’t, and that very freedom is, once more, coming under legal threat because the thin-lipped and -skinned boss of the Crown Prosecution Service says so.
We used to have, in this Nation, a total assumption that the accused is innocent until found to be guilty. Not any more. As I believe has been pointed out on these pages before, the farrago which now takes the place of Justice is self-evident in the statement from the C.P.S. which said:-
The definition of hate crime, recognised by the CPS and police, is “any criminal offence which is perceived by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by a hostility or prejudice” towards the personal characteristics mentioned above. Of course, different types of offences have differing consequences and, as online abuse by its nature cannot cause direct physical harm to a victim, it can never be considered or sentenced in the same way. But we know online hate crime has devastating effects.”
Note the phrase which goes against every former Legal Ordinance, every Statute, every legal document laid before the British Parliament which clearly states that the suspect must be proven guilty; either by evidence laid and scrutinised by magistrate or judge and jury; or by an admission of guilt. The phrase “by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by a hostility or prejudice”turns centuries of legal precedent upon its head” means that the accuser has already been found guilty; by either ‘his accuser’, or ‘any other person’.
The vicious authoritarian streak which many have considered one of Alison Saunders’ least pleasant traits is coming out ever more: and she has the power; she, or rather the CPS under her dictatorial rule, is maybe soon coming for me, or you, or that bloke who lives down at the bend in the road!