“Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable” – JFK

The above quote was made by John F Kennedy, former president of the USA, which simply states that if anybody (i.e. the state and police) stops peaceful and lawful protest then people will move to act outside the law to make themselves heard.

This was what happened in the past with groups such as the anti-slave movement, the Weatherman Underground and in civil rights and anti-war campaigns.

Humberside Police have been shafting democracy over the past year something chronic in an attempt to halt lawful protest against the vivisection-breeders B&K Universal. Last month charges were dropped against activists arrested for alleged “Serious Organised Crime”. Now another victory has been sealed against the Humberside constabulary.

Since July 2006, a certain Chief Superintendent Pat Geenty has authorised an illegal Section 42A notice to stop protests at certain points, decided by himself, within the area around B&K’s Grimston field station. Officers under his command served notices announcing this to protesters outside the said area, banning them for a time limit that was said by himself as “indefinite” – this even went as far as to be served in one campaigner’s living room after they were followed home by police.

S.42A states that people may be banned from the stated area for 2 months, but despite this being put to Humberside on a number of occasions, the “indefinite” approach was upheld.

Following legal action, over a year later, Humberside Police have now withdrawn the notice and anyone is allowed back at the site to protest. The force is paying legal costs.

This brings up numerous questions including why was the ban implicated in the first place when it was a clear breach of the Human Rights Act? (A.10 – Freedom of Expression).

DEMOCRACY?

Not satisfied, the Humberside force have now taken another step in their pursuit to stop campaigners at the B&K site.

During a demonstration, uniformed police officers confiscated every single banner at the protest at Grimston under Section 5 of the Public Order Act due to ‘reasonable suspicion’ that workers for the animal breeders were caused alarm, harassment and distress.

How this can be justified is absurd – one of the simple banners stated the obvious and contained nothing more than text reading “B&K Universal Breed Animals for Vivisection”. Others had images of what happens to animals inside laboratories – no convictions have ever been made due to pictures from undercover investigations being shown, simply because what is represented is the truth. Nobody was arrested during the demonstration, but the campaigning banners and placards are still held by police.

FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION?

Earlier this week an unnamed campaigner was given an Anti-Social Behaviour Order banning him for contacting, amongst other vivisection establishments, B&K Universal.

We accept that his actions that brought him to court were not ‘savoury’, but to turn round and remove someone’s right to oppose something because they broke the law is sickening.

The one big question is what will Humberside Police do next to protect the corporate interests of B&K Universal.

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