I’ve blogged a few times about the absurd lengths to which the government’s “tough on crime” rhetoric takes it, but now Helen Duffett on Lib Dem Voice has done an excellent job rounding up some of the most recent stories:
So far-fetched have been recent grounds for arrest, or for flagging yourself up as a terrorist suspect, that people keep asking me if Lib Dem Voice is running a series of hoax posts. (We’ve had lingering near street ironworks, ordering vegetarian airline meals, handing in lost property, scaring ducks, putting your bin out on the wrong day, looking at things and – easily the most heinous, in my opinion – going equipped with balloons.)
I thought I was joking (albeit darkly) when I said on LibDig that people might one day be singled out for their taste in music, but even that now appears to have happened. Home Office Watch features the terrifying ordeal of a jazz musician arrested by anti-terror police who had taken his soundproofed studio, replete with wires, as a sign of bomb-making.
You can read Helen’s full piece here. The serious point of course is that there are all examples of how keen the state is to keep tabs on the innocent and suspecting on the flimsiest of grounds – rather than concentrating on going after the guilty and genuinely suspicious activity. Each time there is one of these silly stories – remember not just the innocent victims, but also that it’s police time and resources that could have been going on something more worthwhile.