Now I consider myself to be a fair minded individual, I am a great believer in the ‘live and let live’ principle and ‘innocent until proven guilty’. I believe in the need to follow the laws that govern our behaviour and society; although in truth I don’t agree with all of the laws that exist in the world; that said, I believe we should challenge these unfair laws through a proper process.
I am a huge advocate for everyone respecting each others culture and religion, our beliefs are between ourselves and our choice of god – who ever that might be, it is not for someone else to tell us who we should believe in. Centuries of history have shown that doesn’t work, and every religion in the world has had its fair share of brutal religious leaders who have had serious and often fatal influence on what we can or cannot do.
So what is all this leading up to? Well it’s about the recent allegations in respect of Sir Philip Green, now I don’t know this man, I’ve never met him, I certainly was not impressed by his behaviour towards his employees in BHS and I seriously dislike his greedy, self serving behaviour. His behaviour and attitude during the closure of the BHS stores was disgusting HOWEVER like the rest of us he has the right to be deemed innocent until proven guilty!
There is a very worrying trend for people to think that if they shout loud enough and drum up enough sympathy on the internet they can get what they want – well no that should not affect the law/ democracy. We currently have 48% of the nation demanding a 2nd referendum – NO – there was a vote and 52% of people voted to leave Europe, this was further re -enforced when the Conservative party was re-elected in the following general election. If the population of the UK had changed their mind and really wanted to stay in Europe they would have all voted for the Liberal Democrats, as they were the only party stating they would definitely remain in Europe. In this instance like it or not the fair play principle is that we must carry out the vote of the people, that is what democracy is and we all want to live in a democratic society, sometimes you win sometimes you lose. There cannot be a game of having more and more referendums until you get the answer you personally want. I agree that means that there is huge disappointment for many people but if you don’t want to have the benefits of a democracy then don’t live in the UK.
Now we have the Sir Philip Green business – none of us know what has happened, all we know is that an allegation has been made, however this man must, like the rest of us be given a fair hearing. No-one should be circumventing the law or the judiciary to condemn him before the case has gone through due process. It may be shown that he is the most obnoxious individual that ever walked the face of the earth, then again it may be that the man is innocent/ that things were very different. We are condemning this man simply on the basis of the allegation and the fact that he has allegedly paid the complainant to be quiet. The argument given to justify this is that rich people can protect themselves by paying others to stay silent, therefore they have an advantage over everyone else!
Yes they can but do they really have an advantage, it doesn’t matter what their gender, sexuality, age, culture, religion or ability is money can buy silence – BUT ONLY when the offer is accepted. So we have the situation where the person now making the complaint is the same person who was allegedly willing to accept the money but now years down the line has decided they regret that decision; well they should firstly be paying the money back, and secondly their credibility is now in question, this is a person who seems to want their cake and eat it.
This nonsense has to stop, we cannot have a situation where people are judged by the public/ government before the facts are heard. Everyone whether or not we like them or what they are supposed to have done or what they stand for, is entitled to fair play. No-one should be using parliamentary privileges to publicly condemn someone before they have had a fair hearing, how dare they presume to know what happened when they have only heard one side of the story. What is concerning here is that anyone can walk into any MP’S office and come out with some allegation about any of us and before we know where we are we have been found guilty by parliament and NOT by a judge and jury. NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO!
I feel we are at the top of a very slippery slope and we need to be careful that we are not damaging the very processes that are there to protect us. Whilst the public naming of Sir Philip Green may have been undertaken with good intent it is damaging the very fibre of the basis of our judiciary system which is ‘innocent until proven guilty’, the emphasis has to be on the word proven. We only have to look at the damage such behaviour caused Sir Cliff Richard. He was fortunate enough to have the money to clear his name, imagine if it was you – could you afford to fight some allegation of this nature – most of us couldn’t.
I can only tell you of one poor chap who lived nearby and had a falling out with his single mother neighbour. She then went onto a social network and alleged that this man was a paedophile who had assaulted her two small boys. The poor man and his family were hounded out of their home, he lost his job and many friends. His children had to change school, Social services were involved in checking out the family and his reputation was in tatters – yet this woman was PROVEN in court to have maliciously lied. She was fined, but her children stayed at school, she kept her home and continued her life whilst the real victims life was in ruins.
I caution you all to think carefully, it could be you or someone close to you who is accused and condemned before ever going to court. MUD STICKS!!! So before we decide to change the basis of how our judicial system works consider what the consequences might be – I for one would prefer that someone had to prove I was guilty of the alleged offense and that I was given the opportunity to defend myself.
Long live Fair play, Democracy and the principle of Innocent until proven guilty!!!!!