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Started by Agaliarept on Feb 23, 2021 12:38:23 PM
Police who wrongly said ‘being offensive is an offence’ apologise

A police force has apologised after launching a ‘chilling’ campaign that warned ‘being offensive’ was a crime.

One advert was displayed on the side of a van in solidarity with the LGBT community, encouraging people in the Wirral to report hate crime, telling them: ‘Being offensive is an offence.’

https://metro.co.uk/2021/02/23/merseyside-police-apologise-for-being-offensive-is-an-offence-billboard-14129442/

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Agaliarept - 23 Feb 2021 12:38:30 (#1 of 224)

Following an outcry online, Superintendent Martin Earl was forced to issue a statement, saying Merseyside Police ‘would like to clarify that “being offensive” is not in itself an offence’.

We made a mistake!

‘Hate crime is an offence and will not be tolerated. Hate crime can come in various guises that can include assault, criminal damage, verbal and written online abuse.’

We didn’t make a mistake.

Arjuna - 23 Feb 2021 13:28:00 (#2 of 224)

The law is certainly more complex than their irresponsible slogan suggests

DesEsseintes - 23 Feb 2021 13:40:59 (#3 of 224)

Plus, the police are not incapable of being offensive.

Agaliarept - 23 Feb 2021 13:43:33 (#4 of 224)

The law is certainly more complex than their irresponsible slogan suggests

They should've just added an asterisk and put 'sort of' in tiny letters at the bottom.

levelgaze - 23 Feb 2021 13:47:09 (#5 of 224)

Hate crime is an offence and will not be tolerated. Hate crime can come in various guises that can include assault, criminal damage, verbal and written online abuse.’



I thought that 'Hate Crime' was actually the amplification of an existing crime - ie a criminal act which was found to be additionally motivated by Hate in the 'against a group etc.' sense. Has the definition changed?

Arjuna - 23 Feb 2021 13:47:57 (#6 of 224)

I do have misgivings about these police campaigns to show they are friendly to minorities if it is promoting the idea that they have sweep all powers to stamp out on any 'hate'. The compiling of databases about 'hate incidents' is deeply disturbing.

Moschops - 23 Feb 2021 13:50:55 (#7 of 224)

Being defensive is no defense

Arjuna - 23 Feb 2021 13:52:09 (#8 of 224)

A Hate Incident is any non-crime incident which is perceived by the victim or any other person to be motivated by hostility or prejudice based on a person's disability, race, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity or perceived disability, race, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity

https://www.westyorkshire.police.uk/advice/abuse-anti-social-behaviour/hate-crime/hate-crime

Although they give no definition of a non crime incident or how someone can be guilty of a non crime incident, these are still recorded.

Arjuna - 23 Feb 2021 13:54:25 (#9 of 224)

Incidents must be logged by police and can show up on a DBS check even if officers accept there was no crime

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2020/02/14/police-record-120000-non-crime-incidents-may-stop-accused-getting/

levelgaze - 23 Feb 2021 14:11:03 (#10 of 224)

The terms 'hate incident' and 'hate crime' are definitely being conflated, I think. 'Hate incident' seems quite woolly to me.

SharkPatoo - 23 Feb 2021 14:20:07 (#11 of 224)

'Hate Incident' appears to be made up by plod and has no supporting legislation from HMG.

They are ignoring the fact that the 'hate' aspect of a crime (whatever that means) is an aggravating circumstance and not a self-contained crime.

I remember there was much talk at the time of what appalling legislation it was. They also have a lot of trouble with what 'protected characteristics' are. Or, rather, they change them at will to suit their aims.

Arjuna - 23 Feb 2021 14:46:45 (#12 of 224)

It is not that long ago that a police force in this country was declared as institutionally racist, now they have powers to compile lists of racists without any need for proof.

HarveyRabbit - 23 Feb 2021 14:50:56 (#13 of 224)

They are ignoring the fact that the 'hate' aspect of a crime (whatever that means) is an aggravating circumstance and not a self-contained crime.

There are some 'hate' offences which are free-standing. Incitement to racial/religious hatred are crimes in their own right, not 'ordinary' crimes with an aggravating circumstance.

Agaliarept - 23 Feb 2021 14:56:41 (#14 of 224)

now they have powers to compile lists of racists without any need for. proof.

Takes one to know one.

tasselhoff - 23 Feb 2021 15:15:46 (#15 of 224)

Does this mean anyone who is subjectively offended by someone can get plod to class it as a hate incident? Surely there must be further criteria than that?

Arjuna - 23 Feb 2021 15:23:50 (#16 of 224)

A High Court judge ruled on Friday the Hate Crime Operational Guidelines, which informs police work nationally, had been unlawfully used to interfere with a man’s freedom of speech.

The guidelines, rolled out six years ago by the College of Policing, state that any action perceived to be motivated by hostility towards religion, race or transgender idenitiy must be recorded “irrespective of whether there is any evidence to identify the hate element”.

Despite police accepting that such incidents are not crimes, they are still logged on a system and can even show up during a DBS check when applying for work.

not sure where that leaves us now

Tenesmus - 23 Feb 2021 15:26:24 (#17 of 224)

can even show up during a DBS check when applying for work.

I wonder if it gives details or just has a one size fits all flag?

Arjuna - 23 Feb 2021 15:29:24 (#18 of 224)

even if it gives details, they are only opinions, no crime has been committed, no judgement been made.

Tenesmus - 23 Feb 2021 15:35:53 (#19 of 224)

"So your DBS check has come back, says you're on the nonce-jotter."

"Eh? All I did was write to the Guardian suggesting that maybe Priti Patel should have some empathy with immigrants."

Hilary - 23 Feb 2021 15:46:56 (#20 of 224)

There are some 'hate' offences which are free-standing. Incitement to racial/religious hatred are crimes in their own right, not 'ordinary' crimes with an aggravating circumstance.

And that is a scandal. Hatred is not itself a crime nor should it be; and nor should incitement to hatred (of any kind) be. The only kind of incitement that should be a crime is incitement to commit a crime. Wrongthink is not a crime.

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