Previously, the EHRC had supported a teenager called Ruby Williams, who was repeatedly sent home from school because of her afro hairstyle. Ms Williams was awarded £8,500 in an out-of-court settlement against Urswick Church of England school in Hackney, east London, after claims it racially discriminated against her.
Holbrook, who had already shown his arguably wacko side by Tweeting “2016, Russiagate: no evidence, press coverage & state investigates. 2020, Stolen Election: much evidence, press suppression & state ignores” (no. Just no) declared “The Equality Act undermines school discipline by empowering the stroppy teenager of colour”.
Yesterday, Cornerstone Barristers let it be known that they had decided, in an Extraordinary Chambers Meeting, to expel Holbrook, letting it be known that “Mr Holbrook’s views have never reflected those of these Chambers … We unequivocally condemn discrimination in all its forms”. The Guardian added that he had previous.
“The chambers were made aware of concerns relating to Holbrook’s tweets as early as October … after he was sacked by Brighton and Hove city council … Holbrook had tweeted statements saying he would stop shopping at Sainsbury’s following the supermarket chain’s celebration of Black History Month and referencing a ‘migration invasion’ … Brighton council withdrew instruction from Holbrook mid-case”.
Holbrook told his followers “I have been expelled from Chambers. This has freed me to continue my campaign in support of free speech and against all things woke [ho ho ho] … Cancel culture means that the mainstream can proselytise but that when populists present a counter-narrative they must be driven out of mainstream society”.
Ah, the old Cancel Culture ploy. Enter Spiked to tell readers “In defence of Jon Holbrook … The legal profession has become intolerant of unorthodox views” and add this prize nugget. “No doubt the chambers will argue that it had to expel Holbrook to avoid reputational damage. But this won’t do. For one thing, it is hard to see how the political views of a planning lawyer like Holbrook can affect his reputation or that of his chambers”.
But author Andrew Tettenborn has omitted some highly relevant information from his defence: One, his Spiked article does not tell readers that he advises the so-called Free Speech Union, Two, he does not mention Holbrook’s sacking by Brighton and Hove Council, and Three, he does not mention that Holbrook is a featured author at Spiked.
Clearly, free speech can also mean highly selective and potentially misleading speech - to the extent of not telling readers that someone who has just been expelled from his Chambers had been published by the platform which is now defending him.
It’s almost like Spiked don’t want to be associated with Jon Holbrook. I wonder why.
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