The Borders Bill would give the Home Secretary the power to not merely render British citizens stateless - and never mind that those targeted may have been born here - but also remove any of that inconvenient judicial scrutiny. Appeal? No chance, matey - on the deportation flight you get. You can apply for nationality elsewhere - off you trot.
And what has already been briefed to the press on the Raab bill continues in the same vein, as the Mail has told: “The ability of foreign criminals to dodge deportation on human rights grounds will be curtailed under the new Bill of Rights. Reforms will massively restrict the number of appeals brought under the controversial ‘right to private and family life’”.
Do go on. “They will make it far more difficult for appeals to reach court under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which was enshrined in UK law by Labour”. Boo Labour! Boo lefty lawyers!! BOO FORRINS!!! But, hold on a minute, what’s this? “The new Bill of Rights will also insist that rulings by Britain’s top judges take precedence over those from the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg”. Ri-i-i-ght.
The UK will remain a signatory to the ECHR, though, which might put Raab and whoever succeeds him in one of those Very Difficult Positions. But he is sure that “Our plans for a Bill of Rights will strengthen typically British rights like freedom of speech and trial by jury, while preventing abuses of the system and adding a healthy dose of common sense”. So no substance, but lots of spin instead. Or as they say in Yorkshire, all wind and piss.
Confirmation of the real target for this wholly unnecessary new legislation has come from the Murdoch Times: “Writing in the Times today, Raab says that the changes will ‘curb abuses of our human rights laws’ by foreign criminals. The Ministry of Justice said the reforms would also help the Home Office to remove migrants who cross the Channel in small boats and whose asylum claims fail”. FORRINS. MIGRANTS.
In other words, we are being told to Look Over There at people who are not white. Don’t worry, voters, it won’t affect you, it’s just going to allow us to kick out The Other. People who don’t look like you, people with a different religion to yours, people who don’t speak English as a first language. Brown people. Black people. People whose presence frightens you. Because you already believed the racist scaremongering.
You'll have to speak up, I'm a bit Mutt And Jeff
As Michael Rosen put it, “Fascism arrives as your friend … It will restore your honour … make you feel proud … protect your house … give you a job … clean up the neighbourhood … remind you of how great you once were … clear out the venal and the corrupt … remove anything you feel is unlike you”. That’s what Raab and Ms Patel are bringing us. Authoritarianism for now. But the direction of travel is towards fascism.
The Tory slide towards elective dictatorship has been visible for some time. Perhaps now, some of those who shooed away the warnings as scaremongering will finally call it out for what it is. When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.
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