Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The world's gone barmy

A perfect illustration of how the police get things completely wrong comes from the Times this morning.

A father who spent a night in police cells because he was seen smacking his son’s bottom has made an official complaint and demanded an apology for his treatment.

All the father had actually done was smack his 7 year old son once on the bottom after he had run out of a shop - but some unnamed person decided to report this to the police as assault. The police then called at the father's home (having traced him through his car registration), subjected the boy to an embarrassing examination and then carted the father off to the police station even though they could find no evidence of assault and the child had corroborated the father's account of the incident.

The father then spent the night banged up because the witness was "in no fit state" to make a statement. What does that mean? Were they drunk, hysterical, high on drugs, mentally deranged or all of the above?

This is a first class example of how laws which are meant to do good end up working against the law abiding. Parents who use reasonable physical admonishment when their children do something stupid are hounded by the police simply because the liberals have declared that smacking a child is the same as "hitting".

How often have we heard some liberal with a quack science degree tell us that it is wrong to "hit" a child with the obvious implication that a firm smack to the bottom delivered by a loving parent out of genuine concern for their child's welfare equates to a closed fist full force punch to the face delivered by the boyfriend of an apathetic mother.

It's always been illegal to beat a child - for a parent or anyone else. Those that do so - such as those who murdered Baby P have always done so despite the law and will continue to do so as long as social services move heaven and earth to ensure that vulnerable children are kept in dangerous situations, bu they never ever do it in public.

In a sane world the police would have questioned this witness more thoroughly, ascertained that the "assault" merely amounted to a father smacking a naughty boy quite reasonably and told the witness to sober up and get a life - but the police saw something else. They saw an opportunity to get a tick in a box -a crime "cleared up" quickly and cheaply which will add to their statistics and that was their main consideration.


Anonymous said...

Spot on again, Stan, with one exception.

Because of the all-powerful NCRS system (National Crime Recording Standard), which was ostensibly brought in to ensure that the crime figures were more 'accurate', once a complaint of crime, or what purports to be a crime, is made, the police are duty bound to record the offence, even if the complainant is drugged, drunk, or otherwise emotionally disturbed. Failure to do so results in demerit marks for the reneging force - and a worse league table ranking - come inspection time.

As a consequence, forces the length and breadth of the country employ hordes of staff - at enormous expense - to ensure that they comply.

Of course, the corollary of this is that once a crime is reported, forces must, repeat must, do their utmost to detect it, or risk a lower detection rate and a demerit mark on the next inspection...etc.

That is why, sadly and bizarrely, this matter was treated as it was; it is yet another example of the baleful effects of Labour's law of unintended consequences.

Stan said...

I wasn't aware of the NCRS thing - thanks for the update - although it's odd how they can respond so quickly to this case while a burgled householder often has to wait days before they see anyone!