Today it emerges that police in London smashed the windows of a (legally) parked van because it had a sticker on the side which said "Iran is Great".
The owner of the vehicle, Cristian Florin Ivan, was with his family in the Science Museum at the time. When he returned and discovered the vandalised vehicle he assumed he had been robbed. Only when he reported it to the local police was he advised that they had called the bomb squad in order to gain access to the van. It never occurred to the police that the least they should have done was leave a note. They certainly would have done so had the vehicle been illegally parked. Neither is there is any suggestion that the police might reimburse the family for the damage they unnecessarily caused. Will it be an offence in future to utter the words "Iran is Great" or "Syria is not that bad" or what about "Actually the French are rather polite"? We are going to need a list of adjectives we may safely use with each country.
Meanwhile Derbyshire police have interrogated a 13 year old boy who was seen carrying a spade down his street. The 'misfit' in question was doing some gardening for a neighbour.
For many years it has been an offence to carry a knife but, as usual with 'government types' the temptation to push the envelope is ever present. Is it that the possession in public of all gardening implements is suspect or is it a 'youth' issue. As with the purchase of 'sharp objects' and certain chemicals, are we now looking at a revised list of what kids are allowed to do? For good the measure, the lad was also advised by the police not to go knocking on doors asking if he could do any odd jobs. There was a time when such actions were considered laudable.
There is nothing the heavy hand of the state cannot pervert and then criminalise.