Hate Crime Vigil

Last night I attended the Hate Crime Vigil in Trafalgar Square. As with last year – the roll call of those killed by hate is shockingly long and incredibly moving.

Stuart Milk, Harvey Milk’s nephew came over from the USA to speak at the event. And he really summed it up. Everyone is included in this life with the same rights and same potential to contribute. He said that ‘tolerance’ was not a word to be spoken in this regard – it has to be about an inclusive society – not just a tolerant society. I totally agree.

I paste below my speech.

– since last year when I stood here and exhorted you to report hate crime and get your friends to report hate crime

– there is some evidence that this is happening

– recent statistics from the Association of Chief Police Officers show that more people are coming forward to report incidents of disability and transgender hate crime

– but our overall aim is not just to see a rise in reporting but to see a fall in the incidence of all hate crime

– we continue to work with our partners both in the UK and internationally to develop our response to hate crime and t

– raise awareness of all forms of hate crime

– encourage reporting

– identify those who are most at vulnerable and likely to suffer repeat victimisation and ensure they receive appropriate support to prevent further incidents and

– ensure that those commit these crimes are challenged and punished

– we are developing a new cross government hate crime action plan which sets out our vision and approach for tackling hate crime over the coming years

– the government is taking tackling hate crime very very seriously

– But there is more we all can do
– when I stood here last year
– Listening to the roll call of those killed by hate
– I was shocked by the length of that roll
– Hate is the most terrible of emotions
– It is a destructive emotion
– Evil in its manifestation
– And hate for reasons of sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or race is also pathetic
– It’s ignorant
– It’s about impotence
– It’s about inadequacy
– And it’s about fear
– Only this week, sadly, I witnessed such hatred unmasked
– and there is a frightening insanity that feeds that fire
– and whilst we put have laws around us to protect us from such hate
– and we do have good laws
– we still, sadly, have a long long way to go
– Whilst we may be more civilised, we may walk safely in many areas, we know that round any corner that hatred  may be lurking
– And we still have to get to the very heart of that hatred

– and I cannot, literally cannot understand how any human being can hurt another human, because they are frightened or threatened by difference

– as individuals and as a community we should be embracing each others differences, not persecuting each other for them.

– So as well as the law, each and every one of us has a duty to challenge this hatred wherever and whenever we see it and I call on everyone to do so

– And never, ever walk silently by

0 thoughts on “Hate Crime Vigil

  1. This was indeed a powerful evening; your powerful speech setting the tone, and hitting many nails right on the head. Re: the new cross government hate crime action plan that we spoke about on the night, if we at the national, award winning, Disability Hate Crime Network can help, please do let us know. Thank you for what you are doing, and achieving. Bev

  2. A bit rich for a sexist to be talking about hate crime. Your conference comments were clearly hateful against men.

  3. And of course demonstrably false.

    Evens some of the perpetrators of hate crimes feel remorse, apologise and acknowledge and accept their wrong doing. That’s something I’m still waiting for Lynne to do.

  4. This is rank hypocrasy, government ministers including the prime minister are responsible for anti-disabled briefings to the press (calling them scroungers, layabouts, etc) and this in turn has lead to a rise in attacks on the disabled.

    What exactly are you doing to target those ministers agitating against the disabled community? Sure, you may feel like a Liberal Democrat, but unfortunately, you’re as low as your common denominator in the nasty Tory party unless you really confront them over their behaviour.

    You are not doing nearly enough.

  5. @ Harriet Harms Man

    Referring to Lynne, who’s trying to balance the massive imbalance between males/females, is frankly ridiculous.

    Try something else, please.

  6. Frank, Lynne only ever tries to balance things in areas where women may be disadvantaged. I support this mostly, but it’s her total neglect of men’s issues which means she needs to lose her job.

    What action is she taking on the gap in unemployment?

    What about life expectancy?, false imprisonment/arrest?, family court issues? domestic violence services? workplace deaths? cancer spending? the plight of those in the armed services? homelessness? suicide?

    All I’ve seen on this blog is a post about her dads and donuts idea for schools where the father comes in and eats a donut or something and then reads a book I think.

  7. For a minister in a government that is about to make bullying people out of their jobs through the mechanism of a “protected conversation” you really have some brass neck.

    Have you no shame, no morals, no principles at all? Is their no debasement of your supposed values you won’t agree to so long as you get to keep the ministerial salary?

    It’s not as though you even need the money. You love your status more than the rights of the people you are supposed to be representing. You’ll never be able to wash the stain of that away.