Civic leaders in Dudley are lobbying the government to ban any future English Defence League (EDL) protests. [I love how these Leftists and Islamophiles like to ban things. It shows their true democratic credentials:
We support the democratic right of X to protest, but only as long as we agree with X .
This, no doubt, will go along nicely with the anti-democrats’ ‘no platform for the BNP’ policy. As far as I know, I think that the BNP gave up on demos, in part, precisely because they knew they would be banned. Soon it will be ‘no platform' or demos for the EDL as well. Who or what will be next in line I wonder. A ban on Stop the Islamification of Europe (SIOE) demos? No interviews with the EDL? … Sorry, that latter policy has already been adhered to by the national, but especially by the regional, press. When was the last time you read an interview with an EDL leader or spokesman from the EDL? Never? When they do quote the EDL, they do so with tiny snippets which they’ve probably borrowed from another newspaper or even from UAF literature.
So, again, this is a disguised ‘no platform for the EDL’ policy. I have personally phoned the Telegraph & Argus, the Birmingham Post, the Birmingham Mail, and various national newspapers, with no comeback whatsoever… oh, sorry, the Birmingham Mail had the decency and courage to publish a 100-word letter in its letters page. How nice and democratic of it.]
The council said recent protests led to "violent disorder across the town" which cost taxpayers more than £1m. [Most councillors don’t usually give a damn about taxpayers’ money – especially leftist councillors. Even the UAF/SWP has been going on about the ‘waste of tax payers’ money’ – but only in relation to EDL demos, of course! In any case, demos and protests are part of the British democratic tradition. The ‘costs’ are part of the price we pay for democracy. Unless the ‘tax payers of Dudley’ only want the privilege of a single tick in a box every five years. It is very strange, again, hearing leftists and Labourites talking about tax payers’ money.
The other thing is that there would be a lot less criminal damage, etc. if the UAF carried out its counter-demonstrations on other days - not on the same days as the EDL. They would still be displaying their democratic right to protest… Ah! But that’s not why UAF demonstrate against the EDL! They don’t counter-demonstrate to 'voice their concerns about the EDL' or to put the case for Embraced Diversity or Community Cohesion, or other such abstract platonic entities. No. UAF’s prime purpose is to ‘stop the EDL’, or to ‘smash the EDL’, as it often actually says in its literature. That partly explains the violence which has occurred when both groups have held their demos on the same day. Again, UAF doesn’t want to demonstrate against the EDL only, it wants to ‘smash’ or ‘stop the EDL’. There’s a big difference between the two. And that’s partly why there’s trouble.]
The Home Office has said it has no power to ban static demonstrations and can only ban marches if requested by councils and police. [Static marches are more likely to result in trouble than marches because people like to march rather than stay still for two hours. It’s not very nice being cooped up by the police for two hours. Besides which, the EDL wants waverers and bystanders to hear its message and this can’t be done at static demos. Were the ‘Stop the War’ protests static demos? Of course not! They once had the whole of London to themselves. And the same is true of countless other demos, from the Palestinofreaks to the anti-American Muslimists. So why is it only EDL protests which must remain static?]
An EDL spokesman said he did not wish to comment until he had seen the information the council had sent.
The council said recent EDL protests had not been static and had resulted in "major public disorder" causing disruption and financial loss to businesses and residents. [The last demo’s ‘public disorder’ was largely the result of two things:
i) West Midlands Police keeping every EDL steward or marshal in Tipton (at the Harrier pub) and not allowing them to move from there until after the static demo had finished in Dudley. This was clearly a deliberate move by WMP.
ii) The WMP’s decision to blatantly allow Muslimist gangs to rampage and maraud through the streets of Dudley town centre, during which time they systematically picked off the small pockets of the EDL which had been allowed out, one by one, by WMP. Again, this was clearly a deliberate move by the WMP.]
A dossier of evidence, including a pledge signed by 100 organisations opposing EDL protests, and letters signed by council bosses, MPs, traders and members of Dudley Central Mosque, has been sent to James Brokenshire, under secretary for crime prevention, the council said. [Most of the signatories of this ‘pledge’ will be against the EDL for ideological reasons, not because of any criminal damage or activity which has occurred during the demos. This ideological bias is clearly shown by the fact that many of these councillors, trade unionists and ‘faith leaders’ have very close links to Unite Against Fascism – which is an arm of the Socialist Workers Party. So much so that they often quote UAF and use their statistics. In addition, when regional newspapers carry stories about the EDL and its demos, they often interview only UAF members and then use their accounts and statistics.
The ‘criminal damage’ element of all this is a smokescreen to hide the fact that most of these signatories have strong ideological problems with the EDL. This can be shown by the simple fact that UAF and other groups were totally against the EDL long before any trouble or ‘unnecessary disruption’ had occurred at Dudley or anywhere else. Indeed they are similarly against the BNP; and it doesn’t hold demos at all. Let’s have some honesty here.]
Les Jones, the council's deputy leader, said he believed in the democratic right to hold peaceful protests but that the protests in April and July were not peaceful. [That’s largely because of the earnest efforts of the West Midlands Police and UAF to make them violent. Then there will be a case for banning EDL demos… And that’s just where we are now! That’s what we are discussing. It’s almost as if UAF, WMP, Dudley councillors, etc. got together to create the ideal conditions for violence. And then they could say:
Look! I told you so. Surely now we must ban all future EDL demos.
So neat. So tidy. So undemocratic.
"We are doing all we can with the Home Office to look at the law and see if there is any way future protests could be banned before they take place and cause further unnecessary disruption," he said.
The Home Office said all suspected criminal offences are investigated.
"Neither the police nor the Home Secretary have any power to ban static demonstrations aside from those on private property.
"And the Home Secretary has no power to ban marches unless there is a request from the local authority supported by the local police force," it said.
On 17 July, 21 arrests were made during a police operation at an EDL protest in Dudley - 17 for violent disorder, two for affray, one for a public order offence and one for possession of an offensive weapon.
Anti-fascist group Unite Against Fascism held a counter-protest against the EDL, which said it was against Islamic extremism in the UK, at the same event.
In April, nine people were arrested during EDL and Unite Against Fascism rallies.