By Paul Knaggs
Toby Perkins Labour MP for Chesterfield (160 miles away from Bristol) waded into the Twitter debate about Sunday night’s ‘Kill the Bill protest’ in Bristol with both feet.
Perkins’ reactionary tweets sparked an outcry from Left-wing supporters and some well known Left-wing commentators such as Owen Jones, Paul Mason. Even Guardian and Jacobin columnist Abi Wilkinson tutted.
The centrist Labour MP and ally of ‘Keith’ Tweeted: “This looks to me like an entirely appropriate use of the baton. A good example of proportionate policing under extreme pressure. Well done.”
Paul Mason Tweeted back: “Your comments are politically disgraceful and illiterate even from a public order point of view. The commanders of those officers will have been desperate to de-escalate and return to normal policing. We need an inquiry into what happened.”
Perkins was also taken to task Ellie Baker who Tweeted: “If you’ve ever wondered how fascism arose in Nazi Germany, just listen to centrists lecturing an oppressed people on the correct way to protest as their Prime minister mobilises to deny your right to peaceful protest .shame on you Perkins.”
Calling Perkins a ghoul Owen Jones Tweeted: “This ghoul isn’t some random right-wing troll on Twitter – he’s a Labour MP. People like this throughout history cheered on the police beating striking miners, LGBTQ activists and suffragettes, all claiming it was proportionate action given the circumstances. Nauseating.”
Perkins took exception to another comparison with how the police attacked striking miners during Thatcher’s years.
What started as a non-violent demonstration in the city centre against the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill which infringes everyone’s right to protest turned ugly after protesters marched to the New Bridewell police station.
The event was dubbed ‘Kill the Bill’, in reference to the attempts to stop the Government’s proposed law which will give police and the Home Secretary increased powers to stop protests.
The Bill also makes a new law protecting monuments and statues punishable up to 10 years in prison. This follows the toppling of slaver Edward Colston’s statue into Bristol harbour.
It appears MP Toby Perkins has now removed all his reactionary comments about the Kill the Bill demo in Bristol.
Talk about bringing the party into disrepute. Good job he has never claimed to be a left winger!
Source: Based on Paul Knaggs’ original article in Labour Heartlands
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