Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Human wrongs

One of the biggest problems with the human rights act introduced to give Tony's Mrs an income is that it only looks at individual rights, that is the rights of the the person bringing a case where they claim to have had their rights breached. It isn't there to protect the majority, it's there to protect individuals, often criminal individuals and often their rights are deemed equal to everyone else. That's why you get cases like this, which puts a "terrorist suspects" human rights ahead of common sense.

The UK Supreme Court has ruled that an order which forced a terror suspect to live 150 miles away from his family breached his human rights.
The control order forced the suspect, known as AP, to live under a 16-hour curfew in the Midlands while his family lived in London.
Seven judges agreed unanimously that this breached his human rights.
AP is on bail pending deportation to Ethiopia. His curfew under immigration law is longer than the control order.
Control orders were introduced under 2005 anti-terrorism legislation.
They enable ministers to sign an order to place a terrorism suspect under close supervision that some say is similar to house arrest.
In 2008, AP was ordered to live in the Midlands to keep him away from Islamist extremists in London.
His lawyers argued the control order isolated him from his family and breached his right to liberty.
Delivering the verdict, one of the seven judges, Sir John Dyson, said the home secretary must find out the effect of a control order before imposing it.
OK, so no reason is given as to why his family couldn't visit him, he's under the order because he's liable to be deported and the police don't want him associating with extremists. Yet his rights trump all that and he's to be sent back to a place where he can mix again with extremists.
Once again a potential risk to our society is using the HRA to make a mockery of what ought to have been an obvious solution to a possibly dangerous situation, it's not as if the guy is a citizen either and is about to be deported, assuming he just doesn't vanish anyway.
The HRA needs to be scrapped or amended to take into account the rights of the majority to live without fear of a minority, it's been used and abused to allow some very dangerous individuals to walk free amongst the population and has given our security forces headaches as they try to keep tabs on them.
Now from a libertarian aspect the suspect should have a lot of rights and freedoms, however under a libertarian state he probably wouldn't be here as he'd get no benefits save what he'd earned himself, you come here, you work or you starve/rely on charity. It's not the job of the state in a libertarian society to feed you, keep you or house you. There are few rules under a libertarian state, but what there are, are rigorously enforced. You break the law and the state comes down on you like a ton of bricks and if you aren't legally here you're gone, no appeals.
I think a serious rethink of what is and isn't a human right needs to be done, but until we leave the EU, that's not going to happen and cases like this will occur on a regular basis.

8 annotations:

DerekP said...

"this breached his human rights"

Probably most law enforcement action taken by Govt agencies against an individual breaches that individual's human rights; it's justified by weighing that individual's rights against the rights of others not to suffer from actions or threats by that individual.

If the law doesn't consider others rights it clearly no longer acts to maintain that balance, and would seem to remove justification for the majority to accept rule of law.

So the current application of the HRA seems to be making a case for vigilante justice.

opsimath said...

'Breaches his rights to liberty' - of course, he would be prepared to die to defend ours - wouldn't he?

JuliaM said...

You're right, QM. Until we leave the EU, this will go on, and on, and on...

James Higham said...

You break the law and the state comes down on you like a ton of bricks and if you aren't legally here you're gone, no appeals.

So you admit a State then, QM?

Quiet_Man said...

Oh yes James, a minarchist Libertarian allows a minimal state, but only to do what needs to be done (Defence, rule of law) as opposed to the state being responsible for everything and making a very bad job of it.

Trooper Thompson said...

Firstly, the HRA should go and go now. It is a appalling piece of legislation - try reading it and you see it is unintelligible. This in itself proves the law to be bad, in my eyes. Also there is nothing in it that we need.

We (libertarians I guess I mean) must get away from vague and woolly 'rights' and focus on liberties. The rights laid out in the Declaration of Human Rights are either shadows of fundamental liberties that we have as Englishmen, or they are socialistic aspirations that require a big state to enforce, and a big state to confiscate the wealth of some to provide.

The HRA has worked its way into the English legal system like a transfusion of the wrong blood type. In other countries, with a more Roman legal system, they do not have these issues, it is only here that you read of such ridiculous cases. It serves criminals and lawyers, no one else.

I keep quoting from Sir William Blackstone, but he says it succinctly (I am slightly paraphrasing to avoid a large paragraph)

"the rights [or, as they are frequently termed, the liberties of Englishmen] consist, primarily, in the free enjoyment of personal security, of personal liberty, and of private property."

Who needs 'human rights' when we already have these liberties?

Dr Evil said...

If the bastard along with his family were all deported back to Ethiopia (FFS!) there would be no problems for us.

tanstaafl said...

Scrap the f***ing thing!