Police need guidelines

IF ever there were a perfect example of the muddled thinking on the execution and application of British law and order, Police Scotland is the standout winner.

It has rejected a complaint about a highly offensive and potentially illegal antisemitic social media post... because the complainant isnít Jewish.

Perhaps its logic was that the lady who contacted them could not have been offended or alarmed because she is not of the faith, but surely if there is a matter of legality involved ó and the post, by the IHRA definition of antisemitism, breaks the law ó what does religion have to do with it?

Is it not rather like saying that if a racist comment is made online or in person about someone black, one which is homophobic or Islamophobic, then unless those directly affected complain, the police will take no action?

Not so long ago police ripped down posters in various parts of the country which called for the release of the Israeli hostages held by Hamas in Gaza, and yet there was absolutely nothing illegal about their display. The worst that could be suggested was that they had been flyposted, but that was a civil matter rather than one requiring police action.

And yet officers fail to take action during some of the hate-fests that masquerade as proPalestinian demonstrations.

The police need clear guidelines, particularly during these times of heightened tensions, otherwise law and order cannot rule and there will be mistakes which can only cause offence.

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