Owen Jones is pinning the blame on the Tories for anti-monarchy protestors being threatened and arrested, claiming “peaceful protesters are currently being arrested and threatened by police under legislation introduced by the Tories which the left fought in the streets”. Owen is just factually incorrect to blame the Tories for the legislation. The widely reported arrest in Scotland came under Section 38 of the Criminal Justice and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2010, a law introduced under an SNP government supported by the Greens and LibDems, opposed by Labour and the Tories.
Owen’s new-found support for the right to protest comes as a pleasant surprise to Guido, given his prior position on protests he disagreed with:
Women being harassed outside abortion clinics by anti-abortion protestors is horrific - surely action has to be taken to stop it https://t.co/JzPJFhtT7S— Owen Jones (@OwenJones84) April 10, 2018
To be fair to Owen, free speech flip-flops are common on the left. Zarah Sultana yesterday quite rightly argued “No-one should be arrested for just expressing republican views“, while previously voting for a bill with the intention of banning protests outside abortion clinics. Diane Abbott has also defended the right to protest, whilst voting for the same bill to ban those she disagrees with from protesting. The list of lefties picking and choosing on free speech is long…