…even on such things as freedom of speech and expression.
Take the Royal Wedding, for instance. Unlike my esteemed blogging colleagues, all of whom I’ve agreed with in the past, and no doubt will do again, I’m quite happy to see the police ‘pre-emptively’ rounding up those who’s first thought wasn’t ‘Well, I don’t care for the Royal Family, or the feelings of all those people who are coming to London, so I’ll just sit quietly at home and read a book on Marx’, but instead was ‘Yes! This is my chance! I’m going to make a fool of myself and no-one can stop me!’.
There’s various reasons, of course; one being it did indeed meet the ‘protection of the public’ test. I can only guess how they would have reacted when they were confronted with these loons doing their best to be the classless, selfish, inconsiderate children that they wanted to be. And the police would have had to respond.
And I know that in the past, when the affront has been of, shall we say, a Muslim persuasion, they’ve been less happy to oblige the outraged, claiming ‘free speech’. But that doesn’t mean that they weren’t right to do so here.
It’s one day. One day only. One day for the decent people to have their say, unmolested by the needlessly provocative. I know, I know; I’ve already had this out at great length with others, on blogs and on Twitter. ‘Freedom of speech is absolute, or it’s nothing!’.
And if they decide to ’round up the usual suspects’ tomorrow, and the day after, and the day after that, I’ll agree.
But until they do…
They have 364 days of the year to make nuisances of themselves, to caper and gibber and be as provocative as they feel they can get away with. Just not for that one day.
Is that too much to expect?