Hardly had Stephen Yaxley Lennon, who styles himself Tommy Robinson, told Rebel Media supremo Ezra Levant that he was “going to find” lots of public servants on the basis of his claims and most likely nothing more, than the vigilantism began in earnest. And the one kicking off this worrying development was Lennon himself.
There was some kind of incident in London’s Soho at the weekend over people allegedly praying close to a street market. It was claimed that a supporter of Lennon’s so-called Day For Freedom had been knocked to the ground by a passer-by. There is video of the incident, but what exactly happened is not clear. That did not faze Lennon.
“Imagine this was a Muslim woman wearing a hijab who got knocked out by a non Muslim man. World news. Hoping Amy is ok, this is outrageous, typical coward” told his Facebook feed (Lennon, of course, has been banned from Twitter). So the incident was immediately framed as a woman being attacked by a Muslim man.
Was he a Muslim? No evidence has been ponied up. But then Lennon upped the ante significantly: “I will pay a £1000 to anyone who can correctly identify this man, he attacked and knocked a lady unconscious earlier because she was filming outside an Islamic centre in London and questioning them if Islam was really a religion of peace”.
We should take Lennon’s word for what happened. Also, no mention was made that the first port of call here should have been the Metropolitan Police. He repeated the message: “£1000 to anyone who can help me identify this man, he violently beat Amy (bacon lady) in London. Share share share, someone must know him”.
Then came - as Lennon must have known - his followers. “Can we make this go VIRAL? @BasedAmy a British WOMAN beaten by a MUSLIM MAN for asking them to not pray in the middle of the street in the area of SOHO. Unacceptable!!!” Was it a Muslim man? We don’t know. They don’t know. That isn’t the point. It’s clearly about incitement.
Another Tweeter put out an image with WANTED at the head. But at least, in this instance, that person had the good sense to direct anyone with information to the Met.
But they were in a small minority: soon came “@metpoliceuk DO NOT SEEM INTERESTED IN FINDING @realbasedamy ATTACKER. SO IT'S LEFT TO PATRIOTS @DanielT64518410 AND #TommyRobinson WHO HAVE PUT OUT A £1500 REWARD FOR ANYONE THAT CAN NAME THE SCUMBAG (OVER TO YOU PATRIOTS)”.
Those dispensing street justice are “Patriots”, it seems. And there was more. “If you see this Danny let me know the day your [sic] going to find this guy as I want to be there”. That’s what happens when the mob takes over. As Lennon must have known.
It was, moreover, no surprise to see another presence weighing in with “I'm sure many others will want to join you”. An incident framed as a Muslim man attacking a white woman, whatever the reality, and then farmed out to the mob to deal with.
This is not merely unacceptable behaviour. It is an abhorrence. And Stephen Lennon is deliberately orchestrating and encouraging it. That is bang out of order.
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