On the Terrors of Hate Graffiti

by Fergus Downie

I have to admit, defunding the police makes a lot of sense. In the UK. Much like our other nationalised treasures they’ve been below par for a while, and their inefficiency cum politicisation is all the more galling when you consider their energetic pursuit of trivia. The obligatory ‘Community Safety Units’ of UK forces are filled with officers zealously policing thought crimes, and when thoughts escalate to deeds the consequences are met with grave seriousness. Our borough has one of the highest rates of violent crime in the country but the metropolitan police evidently has enough time to devote to anti-transgender graffiti, much of which is pretty well mannered. ‘Women don’t have penises’ is proving to be quite a catchphrase and I understand (the intelligence was conveyed with grave seriousness) this is likely to be associated with the sinister activities of the TERFS. The trans-exclusionary radical feminist movement is a pretty serious outfit from what I know and their ability to strike at any time with audacious operations like these has caused no end of concern in the council too. Email traffic has been frenetic and six hour days have been put in to monitor ‘community tensions‘ amongst the twenty or so people that took an interest. I hope we will be able to offer succour and support officers like the one in Thames Valley who first laid down the gauntlet. In Oxford where the aforementioned offensive statement received its foul birth, (along with ‘Woman: noun. Adult Female’) PC Rebecca Nightengale, the investigating officer noted ‘Behaviour like this is not acceptable and we take incidents of this nature very seriously.‘  Americans will not be surprised by now to know that this is a public order offence in the UK, and I doubt any police force capable of such feats would ever be up for defunding in their own bastions of infantile leftism. These are cops I suspect Omar or Cortez could live with. And there’s lots. The police cuts are largely a myth – what they have is a shortage of ones who can hack it in a response team or take a career ending decision to shoot to kill. Wearing out your backside in front of a computer and collecting vacuous ‘intel’ for the councils Hate Crime Coordinators is where the action is at. It’s tough, but I used to work in the local authority’s community safety team ( just to avoid confusion when demarcating these elite outfits) and I knew how to act under pressure. I once received a complaint from a member of the public concerning an overgrown hedge. She asked when I was going to come over and ‘trim her bush’. All in a half days work. There are few areas unmolested by the state in today’s Britain.

In the past the language underwhelmed the deeds. Watching police officers butcher the English language on TV used to be a cringeworthy ritual when I was growing up but it was coupled by a perverse preoccupation with catching criminals, and if you caught them, what did it matter if they apprehended felons wielding ‘blunt excrements’ or described a pregnant woman in harrowing circumstances losing her ‘unborn faeces’ ?( a brilliant compound error I caught from a Northumbria CID officer in the 80s )  Now they manage to stitch public sector cliches together with aplomb but their productivity makes me feel like a Stakhanovite. And who says blunt excitement isn’t dangerous anyway?

Just occasionally however new blood is injected into a flagging corpse. During the Mark Duggan riots ( ie conflagration of mass looting) reinforcements from South Wales constabulary were drafted in and at the first whiff of trouble started beating the miscreants to the delight of local pensioners. It was quite a community building moment as we like to say now. I was standing next to an elderly Jamaican woman during one of these performances and her comment – ‘mash up the bloodcart teef ‘ – pretty much summed up my views on the subject too. Best not to over complicate things.


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