By Stanley Collymore
The magistrature system of dealing with civil and criminal cases and dispensing judgment in relation to them has been a feature of English life for generations and was even exported to many parts of the former British Empire. But while it has usefully evolved overseas in those countries that still use it in England it has significantly become infirm, corrupt, biddable and self-serving; unaccountable to and completely unrepresentative of the general population; elitist, out of touch with ordinary people, and totally unfit for purpose in 21st Century and multicultural England. As such radical and wholesale reform of the English magistracy is desperately needed if it’s to have any meaningful or constructive impact on the lives of most of us.
The knee-jerk response coupled with the complete capitulation to political and media pressure, hardly objective criteria in themselves, in response to the 2011 English riots; the mockery of justice in the John terry trial, and numerous other glaring examples of the abuse of power liberally laced with rank incompetence by the English magistracy comprehensively demonstrate the unfitness for purpose of this unelected, unaccountable, secretly selected, elitist, unrepresentative of the ordinary citizens of our country, Colonel Blimp mindset, biddable to power and influence and therefore highly susceptible to rendering verdicts that are neither commonsensical, logical in their conclusion nor impartially arrived at.
Where the influence of secret, medievally-ritualistic, risible to the consciousness of the common man or woman but all the same highly pernicious and additionally intensely and voluntarily involved with furtive sects like the freemasons that the vast majority of these pseudo-judicial clones belong to, is a rite of passage to their selection as magistrates, and accordingly is an endemic and corrosive force in practically everything that subsequently occurs in the aftermath of these appointments.
Factors which are acutely compounded by a decidedly arrogant egotism concomitant with a vigorous disdain for those, other than the well-heeled or privileged and of course themselves, who have the misfortune to appear before them, conclusively points to and illuminatingly highlights a situation that frankly is well past its normal shelf-life, and where wholesale and drastic reform of the English magistracy is not only long overdue but also desperately needed.
It’s not enough, and furthermore is grossly inexcusable and even quite damnable in my opinion, for apologists of the system to hide behind the façade of tradition and claim that the English magistracy has been a part of our judicial system now for generations and even centuries; and being English and fond of our traditions as we’re wont to, however useless or rather meaningless these really are in the modern world that we live in, deluding ourselves in the process that they characteristically define us as who we are and therefore we must permanently hallow and respect them come what may, cuts no ice with me. Since I totally disagree with that obtuse and unconvincing argument, if one could deign to dignify it with such an appellation that is; and here’s partly why.
It was once considered as quintessentially English for every Lord of an English Manor to undeniably have the unchallengeable right after, and I do literally mean immediately on the conclusion of every wedding ceremony of those who were directly associated with his manorial estate, to have the new bride, whether she was a virgin or not and obviously prior to any post-marital conjugal intercourse that she and her lawful husband intended to embark upon, summarily brought to his stately home on that particular estate.
Where, whether the new bride in question privately wanted to be there or not and in particular of the circumstances that she was summoned to be there, she nevertheless had to be; but once there had to uncomplainingly surrender to every sexual advance or request that the Lord of the Manor demanded of her and with whom she wasn’t only obliged to spend her entire wedding night as well as the onset of what was effectively her honeymoon but was also expected to say with her manorial master, who invariably was married himself and had a family of his own, for as long as he desired her company and by whom, most predictably, she was usually impregnated by the time that she was allowed to re-establish contact with her husband, and who like all the other husbands before and after him long-sufferingly accepted this fait accompli with absolute resignation since they could do nothing about it.
I’ve no doubts whatsoever that there are still elements in our society today who rue the departure of what they would deem to be the good old days when the toffs ran rampant and the plebs universally knew and kept their place, and if left to them would willingly have such times and all their attendant travesties back in a jiffy. But I can’t realistically imagine in 2013 any self-respecting, contemporary-minded British woman of any social class, or her husband with a similar outlook for that matter, ever countenancing such a state of affairs as the one I earlier described; and furthermore doing so on the misguided, perverse or even the subservient assertion that it was traditionally English and therefore that makes it all right.
Similarly and just as evocatively bear-baiting; the nautical atrocity of walking the plank; routinely burning alleged witches at the stake, or alternatively throwing them trussed up like turkeys ready for the Christmas oven and further weighted down by their plentiful and heavily waterlogged garments into deep lakes, ponds or reservoirs while their accusers and enemies maliciously and expectantly stood guard on the banks of these contrived artifices of death for what was undeniably the inevitable outcome of their devious handiwork.
Then to pronounce their victims innocent if they drowned, which was always largely going to be the case, but compellingly in their warped minds guilty of witchcraft and as such entitled to be ruthlessly subjected to even more brutal torture and eventually execution if in the rarest of cases they survived their attempted drowning ordeal, were likewise classic examples of traditional and quintessentially perceived English forms of societal and, most significantly, judicial conduct. So should we also re-introduce these barbaric practices with their past legislative and judicial legitimacy on the jaundiced basis that they were all at one time or another an integral and traditional part of the social fabric of English society?
Or perhaps we could re-instate the practice of publicly hanging, drawing and quartering those whom we dislike, or enthusiastically take to humiliating them along with selective wrongdoers drawn from among those we contemptuously consider to be what the Nazis referred to as “Die Untermenschen” – which for the benefit of those who don’t know any German translates as “The Undesirables – people we could physically immobilize in outdoor stocks, relatively easy to construct and maintain, whatever the state of our capricious weather and the more adverse that is the better, ideally located in prominent public places for all to see.
And from where in our utter distaste for and total hatred of such people we could be encouraged to, and can accordingly gave full vent, with official impunity to do so, to the worst aspects of our human nature in relation to them. No wouldn’t that be the epitome of good old-fashioned English tradition?
For what it all really boils down to is this, what kind of society do we really want to have and truly aspire to actually achieving? Is it one where a 10 year old black, London schoolboy on his way home during the 2011 English riots, not involved in any conceivable way in what was going on at the time but who accidentally stumbled across a bottle of drinking water whose value was less than a Pound (£1) Sterling presumably dropped earlier, when he wasn’t even in the vicinity of where he found it lying on the street, by apparent looters that he hadn’t seen, didn’t know, or possibly had no empathy with because his crucifiers weren’t interested in this line of enquiry, as the only thing that mattered to them was the colour of his skin and the savage stereotypes they routine and quite condescendingly attach to his blackness.
Picked up this bottle of water, which could have come from anywhere and for all we know probably wasn’t even looted, took it with him and ended up with a swingeing custodial sentence of one year imprisonment; this despite him having an unblemished character and only 10 years old. But it wasn’t just him that the magistrates were having a go at; theirs was collective punishment of Britain’s black community per se, perceived by their sort as not worthy of or having any entitlement to be in Britain, never mind that they were born and raised here or that without the rapacious plunder of the Empire we once had and boasted that the sun never set on concomitant with the savage exploitation of its people, in particular Blacks, and of whom these British Blacks are their unrewarded descendants, the United Kingdom would be nowt!
A mindset not at all removed from that of Zionist-apartheid Israel towards the Palestinians who also recurrently come in for brutal and oppressive collective punishment from this Nazi cancer injected into the Middle East, and the likes of those who hand out prejudicial and barbaric sentences in the UK to under aged black kids who’re yet to reach the age of puberty fulsomely support and would dearly love to see a full-blown version of this Israeli-Zionist savagery implanted not only in England but also throughout the United Kingdom.
For let’s not forget that the 2011 English riots were most dishonestly denounced and cruelly vilified by politicians, the British media and so-called analysts, all of whom had their own particular agendas to push and personal axes t grind, as the Blackman’s Riot; which putting it mildly, and as objective criteria later proved, was knowingly by these covert as well as unconcealed racists to be a deliberate and barefaced lie, but was nevertheless seized upon by our magistrates to do what they’re quite adept at doing, which is to abolish justice where black victims are concerned.
In marked contrast however a retired British Army major driving down one of our busy motorways and a little worse off for drink missed his designated turn-off point. But instead of driving on to the next motorway exit when he later discovered that he’d done so and exiting there, the n rejoining the stretch of the motorway going in the opposite direction to the one he was on and which would have enabled him to sensibly and practically reach is intended destination as any normal person would do in similar circumstances, this arrogant pillock didn’t she why he should as he had other ideas, like doing a U-turn on the stretch of motorway he was already on and heading back down it in the wrong direction.
And having done that he blithely proceeded at speed to illegally roar down this stretch of motorway against the oncoming traffic lawfully using it as they should but nevertheless having, because of this man’s actions, to make dangerous and even life-threatening manoeuvres to avoid colliding with his car. Go alone knows how this man managed to avoid a dangerous pile up with the most catastrophic consequences for all concerned before he eventually reached the motorway exit he was after and where even then the prospect of a catastrophe loomed.
For we drive on the left in Britain and this man’s turn-off, as was his journey to get there, was a contravention of this and every aspect of the highway code, and furthermore had clearly put at risk traffic rightfully using as an entrance point onto to the motorway what this maniac had disdainfully and quite arbitrarily as well illegally turned into an exit point for himself which it most evidently ought not to have been.
Fortunately someone took his car number and reported the matter to the police who sensibly charged him with reckless driving and the endangerment of life. However at his subsequent court appearance and with him proverbially singing from the same song sheet as the magistrates sitting on the bench and supposedly trying his case, this man waxed lyrically in his affected posh accent about how busy he was; how pressing his engagement was that day and all the other bullshit he could conjure up and knew would be empathetically received and acted upon by these magistrates. However not a word of regret or any apology to those whom he could so easily have killed.
Unsurprisingly, the court case was dismissed by the magistrates and in a manner that no ordinary member of the public would have dared to hope for. But this was by no means merely an aberration by a few out of touch magistrates or even an exception to the unwritten but clearly designated rule of one law for the toffs and another for the plebs, no matter how serious the circumstances or the likely consequences are. As there’ve also been family members of our monarchical household who’ve been courageously charged as well with reckless driving or other offences and have either, without having to make a personal court appearance that the rest of us must do in similar circumstances, and despite the overwhelming evidence of their guilt have similarly had their charges dismissed by magistrates or else have received from the toadies involved nothing more severe than a mild slap on the wrist for what they did.
When tongue-in-cheek I questioned a few police friends of mine why this was so, as I already knew the answer which wasn’t rocket science to decipher by any stretch of the imagination, was candidly told that it was a bad career move in the police force to arrest or charge elements of our privileged society and especially so those linked to our monarchical family with anything, whatever or however serious that offence was, which most of us never get to hear about anyway as it’s always discreetly swept under the carpet and quietly forgotten. And not dissimilar to the situation of the Australian TV news presenter who unblinkingly while on air purposely swallowed a fly that was quite irritatingly bombarding their mouth and carried on reading the news as if nothing had happened, those involved in the professional practice of damage limitation usually get promoted. So why risk all that?
That said elements within the police force are themselves not above reproach; and I’m referring here specifically to the issue of Ian Tomlinson. I shan’t rehash the full story of this man’s untimely death here, the circumstances of which can be readily Google online. Suffice to say that Ian Tomlinson’s killer was a policeman with a far from exemplary attitude to policing those whom he had a duty to protect and was paid to do so and significantly as well a brutal modus operandi to match.
Yet in spite of all this, strenuous efforts were made by his police employers to conceal his previous wrongdoings even to the extent of allowing him to leave the force so he wouldn’t have to face police disciplinary proceedings, then outrageously re-admitting him when a sufficiently convenient period of time had elapsed and public memories it was hopefully expected had either dimmed or completely faded. And which together with the huge body of evidence that had also subsequently emerged and unquestionably showed that Ian Tomlinson was gratuitously murdered didn’t manage to sway those who were judging the man that killed him from their ostensibly premeditated verdict that this killer was innocent of the charges brought against him.
I’m neither naïve nor stupid as to believe that all English magistrates are either symptomatic of what I’ve earlier described in this article or are even remotely tainted by any of it; and not least so because I’ve met, have been befriended by and, significantly, have mutually and freely engaged in detailed conversations with a number of those who aren’t to know differently. But even this small group of dedicated, competent and probity-minded judicial officials readily agree that the system stinks.
Call it tradition or whatever else you like to but the stench is still there and there’s no getting away from that lightly, or should there be. And this is a recognition too by those I’ve spoken to and who like me concur with the appraisal that there’s an overwhelming necessity for change but then demur by saying contradictorily that there’s an omnipresent fear that pervades the psyche of those involved within the system who’d like they say to see change happen, but a fear that has taken a vice-like grip on them, totally paralysing them into a stupefying state of ineffectuality. And furthermore one which compellingly stops them from sticking their heads above the parapet to advance such an endeavour that could credibly heap all manner of retribution upon them. So they back off from doing anything at all, and the system wins each time that they do so.
Notwithstanding that I’m still firmly convinced that adopting such an approach is not only a sign and physical manifestation of inexcusable cowardice but also and rather regrettably quite inappropriately sanctions a green light to a blemished status quo that callously endorses the jailing of a 10 year old, black London schoolboy on a trumped up and ludicrous misdemeanour charge elevated to handling stolen proper, when all that this lad did was to pick up and retain a bottle of drinking water he found discarded on the street on his way home during the 2011 riots.
A jail sentence of one year that was wholly inappropriate to anything that this boy, a mere child, did but was sadistically instituted to gratify the warped prejudices of biased legal enforcement officials and their ilk who conversely think that it’s perfectly in order for someone who thinks as they do to gratuitously and violently kill a totally innocent man, Ian Tomlinson on his way home at the end of his day’s work, doing a low paid but quite honestly engaged in form of employment to feed in these austerity-strapped times the family he obviously cared about, and who felt the same about him.
This most ironically when so many of our rich and privileged elites or the multinational corporations in whose pockets they firmly ensconce themselves and sycophantically pay obeisance to, make little or no financial contribution to our society or the economy, choosing instead to immorally horde their enormous wealth, irrespective of how or where it was acquired, in offshore tax havens with the full blessing of our governments of all political persuasions and venal parliamentary representatives that are themselves on the take.
The same people that have the temerity and effrontery to blame the poor and disadvantaged among us for their tiresome incompetence and other cock-ups while in the most vitriolic and grandstanding fashion that they can contrive slamming these hapless victims as welfare scroungers, never mind that they created them in the first place; and who they deduce must at all costs be remorselessly reined in and eventually disposed of. A case of reality being trumped by humbug and make belief!
Little wonder then that among those who unthinkingly or else subserviently accept their position as British subjects rather than as equal citizens of our country entitled to the same rights, privileges and dignity as everyone else are increasingly and in the vast majority of cases unknowingly placed on the Pathway of Death because their lives are cold-bloodedly regarded by those who’re playing at being God, callously making decisions of life or death over others and having them implemented, because the lives of those persons who they reject are deemed as no longer productive or the least worthy of preservation, since from the jaundiced perspective of these decision makers their continued existence in this world by such individuals is considered to be completely meaningless. And so in our overtly materialistic world that so many people have incredibly permitted themselves to be seduced by they must be got rid of, if only to re-adjust our financial deficit.
And if among doctors who swear by the Hippocratic Oath to do their utmost to preserve human life, uphold medical ethics and always behave in a way that’s professionally construed to be in the best interests of their patients, corruption of this nature, whether it’s voluntarily or coercively engaged in, is now likely even to the extent of actually becoming commonplace, why shouldn’t others similarly employed in other areas of civil society and who wield power and influence in the bargain not think and act likewise?
Particularly so when they regard themselves as the unassailable guardians of a way of life which the astute among us have long considered to be grossly inequitable and completely outmoded. However, I’m not asking for the wholesale scrapping of the English magistracy; I just want to see it massively reformed to fully reflect the realities of life in the 21st Century and the sensitivities of multicultural and diverse England; and that includes all of us. That’s what I think; how about you?
And to assist that process perhaps this poem might help.
You talk often about truth,
freedom and the execution of justice,
but your words are both meaningless
and cheap, as there’s no substance,
whatsoever, in what you say
as regards of any of these;
for you’re still the instinctive
and ever accommodating rubber stamps
of the Crown Prosecution Service
and a crooked and out-of-control police force
whose very name once emblazoned your courts:
and where, despite the cosmetic name change,
the debased mentality and corrupt collaboration
between the three of you stay solidly the same.
Yes, you are the
shameless sycophants who,
without a scrap of honesty
or morality to even superficially
penetrate your endemic mediocrity,
masquerade as an unbiased judiciary
yet have no awareness that can readily be
discerned by anyone, of what either of these two
concepts correctly symbolize, or actually mean
Hence, no independent spirit –
provided that you were ever capable of such –
will ever be allowed to revoke your remit
decreed by others: orders to which
you clearly attach so much;
let alone deliberately undermine
what you regularly, fraudulently
and malevolently pass off
as objective scrutiny,
in your hostile and kangaroo-style
regarding those men and women
whose status, and even their right to life,
you daily challenge, and see as vastly inferior
to your own.
So why, given the nature and levels of dishonesty
so all pervasive within the English magistracy,
are you still surprised I’m not taken in
by the machinations of what I see
as unelected and unaccountable charlatans:
a situation where nepotism, privilege, secrecy
and the rapidly spreading cancer of freemasonry
are totally out of control and, it must be said,
have killed off permanently whatever notions
still remained of justice for everyone
in England, stone cold dead?
© Stanley V. Collymore
1 April 1998.