Growing up in Britain, I along with I assume everyone else believed that we lived in a free country, I could say what I wanted, and you could say what you wanted. The police would not come knocking at your door if you posted something someone didn’t like on the internet, and the government would not jail you for speaking your mind or for posting a tweet.
You and I were free to say what we wanted about an individual, a company, or the government. The police did not have the power to jail you for a tweet and besides they would be spending their time focused on real crimes, such as trespassing, theft, threatening behaviour, murder, real crimes committed against innocent people.
Well, what if told you that that idea of Britain we grew up with, is a lie? Britain is not a free country, quite the opposite actually. You can be arrested and prosecuted for a tweet in Britain, in fact around nine people are arrested by the police every day for online speech or related crimes.
They are arrested and prosecuted under a law titled Section 127 of the Communications Act 2003. A New Labour concoction, but one that has been embraced by the Conservative Party too. That law states, ‘A person is guilty of an offence if he— (a) sends by means of a public electronic communications network a message or other matter that is grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character’. And that ‘A person is guilty of an offence if, for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety to another’ he does the following which you can read on the screen beside me.
Now, you would think, as I do, do the police not have enough to do, are there not real crimes they could be preventing, real dangerous people that they could be arresting? Well in 2017, the Crown Prosecution Service directed by Alison Saunders at the time, announced a new focus and that they would, ‘treat online hate crimes as seriously as those committed face to face’. Prosecutors were encouraged to take up these cases and also seek greater penalties for those found guilty. In that same year, the Home Secretary at the time Amber Rudd announced a new National Police Hub to tackle online hate crimes. Ultimately Rudd’s career, like Saunders, ended in failure. Alison Saunders was not reappointed as Director of the CPS for a second term due to multiple scandals involving overturned rape convictions due to the police withholding evidence, but she was still made a Dame in 2020, like all members of Britain’s ruling class, Saunders faced no consequences for her failures, after all, failure in Britain’s ruling class seems to be rewarded.
So given this increasing focus the streets of Britain must be crime-free if our police can afford to spend time on fake online crimes. There mustn’t be a criminal in sight, no homes being burgled, no one being attacked or mugged, no one’s phone being stolen as they walk through their city, no gang violence, no one taking or dealing drugs, and surely there is no one threatening and causing distress to members of the public going about their day. Surely there is none of that?
We all know that isn’t the case, in fact, Britain is increasingly becoming lawless. Virtually all crime is legal, of the more than 5.5 million reported offences last year, only 300,000 were charged, a rate of 5.5%. Britain is like the Purge, except if the Purge was 365 days a year, 24 hours a day. Nowhere is this more evident than a certain TikToker has exposed this week.
18-year-old Baccari Ogarro is a Hackney-based TikToker who posts videos such as the ones I’m about to show you which he describes as pranks, watch:
So this clearly respectable young man records himself forcing entry into people’s homes, stealing a dog from an elderly woman, and going up to young girls at night asking them if they want to die. Someone that acts like this, and acts so brazenly by posting the videos online is wicked and shameless, do we really want someone like that out in public with the rest of us? Do you want him to potentially do the same to your children or your grandmother? It is regressive behaviour, but in which the police have little interest. Far from being ‘institutionally racist’ as the Casey review stated earlier this year, the Metropolitan Police have seemingly allowed this young black man to terrorise members of the public for months.
So this young man is terrorising members of the public, and people are rightly outraged, yet our politicians have different concerns. The Labour MP Alex Davies-Jones wrote on Twitter that Mr Ogarros videos are ‘Yet another example of how we desperately need the Online Safety Bill to hold the social media platforms to account’. Is it TikToks fault that Mr Ogarro feels so emboldened enough by our weak police and justice system that he feels he can act this way with impunity? Why don’t the police just do their job, and why don’t politicians make it so that they do so? The problem for our politicians is that citizens can now see in real time-how crime is de-facto legal, the problem is not the crime itself but the fact we can see it and react to it.
Instead of tackling the crime itself, our politicians are pushing yet another censorship bill in Britain, the Online Safety Bill, with companies such as Meta who own WhatsApp and Signal both threatening to pull their apps from Britain if the Online Safety Bill passes, as they state it will effectively institute government surveillance of citizens communications. Failed politician Nicky Morgan, who is now in the House of Lords, remember what I said about failure being rewarded, Morgan is proposing an amendment to the Bill which will tackle online sexist abuse. The bill will also jail tech executives who fail to comply. Not content with destroying our already small tech sector, the genius British parliament is now set to alienate the major American tech giants too. The Conservatives portray themselves as the party of freedom and the family, but in reality, they are passing restrictive, nannying censoring legislation.
Once again, our politicians are passing laws on things they don’t understand, and have no comprehension of the consequences. But do we really believe that Section 127 of the Communications Act and the upcoming Online Censorship Bill are going to be used against people like Mr Ogarro, or is it far more likely that these laws will be used against people who share controversial opinions, such as Kate Scottow who in 2020 was arrested at home in front of her children and convicted under Section 127 after she called a transgender woman a ‘he’ online? I think we can take a guess and say these laws will increasingly be used against people who notice certain goings on, whether that is to do with immigration, demographics, or even criticising politicians. How long will it be before your frustrated tweet at your local MP becomes an online hate crime? After all, they do think they’re more important than you and that they shouldn’t have to deal with criticism from the people they are supposed to serve.
So the police already can’t enforce the existing laws and prosecute criminals in real life, such as Mr Ogarro, with the new set of powers they are to be handed with the OCB, will they even be able to enforce them? Let’s hope not, but we all know these laws will be used at their discretion, and it won’t be against Mr Ogarro, it will be against people who notice things they aren’t supposed to notice.
And a reminder, you can’t take the law into your own hands if someone breaks into your home, you’ll be the one going to jail, the British state has made that very clear time and time again, you have no right to defend yourself. When the police are failing, you cannot take things into your own hands, as this man today, unfortunately, found out. Watch:
I stated earlier that Britain is no longer a free country, and for law-abiding citizens, it isn’t, for real criminals however, it very much is. The rights of criminals and law-breakers are above the rights of you and your family. The freedom for law-abiding tax-paying citizens to go about their day free from crime no longer matters, if the state cannot provide a safe and secure society, what use is it?
What can be done? Repeal Section 127 of the Communications Act, abandon the Online Safety Bill, shut down the Crown Prosecution Service and restart it from scratch by hiring prosecutors who are tough on real crime. As for the Police, abolish useless devolved Police and Crime Commissioners, and force officers back onto the street instead of filling out paperwork in offices and waiting for crimes to happen. Proactive policing not reactive. Make an example of Mr Ogarro and forcibly retire any Judge who fails to give him the maximum sentence.
None of our political parties will do this of course, but have faith, change is coming to Britain, unfortunately just not overnight.