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Keep off the grass
January 30, 2003 7:52 AM   Subscribe

Keep off the grass These days in London it's okay to smoke grass but not okay to walk on grass. Perhaps it's not all that surprising given that there's been a material breach. Any other current examples of civil liberties being eroded quite so outrageously where you live?
posted by skellum (25 comments total)

 
Any other current examples of civil liberties being eroded quite so outrageously where you live?

Yes.
posted by machaus at 7:56 AM on January 30, 2003


So how come all those people can't have their protest somewhere else, or is Hyde Park the only place that one can exercise his or her right to protest in London?
posted by Durwood at 7:57 AM on January 30, 2003


I don't understand why the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport has the final say. Surely it's the park authority? If it's normal practice to keep large crowds out of royal parks in winter why did they have to go to Tessa Jowell? Anyway, what are they going to do? Put a police cordon round Hyde Park?
posted by Summer at 8:11 AM on January 30, 2003


Hyde Park is the largest & most central of inner London's spaces (at the end of Oxford St). Protests tend to congragate at one point (usually Kennington Park, just south of the river or on the Embankment, just north of the river behind Charing Cross Station), march thru town & then have a rally (speakers, music & the like) at an end point which is usually Trafalgar Square for smaller gatherings, or Hyde Park for the larger ones.

Having regular meeting points & routes help with the logistics - crowd management, traffic control, health & safety &c.

machaus: Oh, we just lurve our CCTV in the UK too...

Summer: Probably.
posted by i_cola at 8:21 AM on January 30, 2003


Any other current examples of civil liberties being eroded quite so outrageously where you live?

yes.
posted by quonsar at 8:26 AM on January 30, 2003


Also, IIRC, Hyde Park is well renowned for their Soapbox Speakers (yellers, often in my experience). When I spent five weeks in London, I sought it out expressly for the purpose of hearing people. It's a well-established place for public speaking.

sure hope I'm remembering my london parks correctly
posted by Ufez Jones at 8:28 AM on January 30, 2003


Quonsar -

Is it just me, or would Tom Ridge look absolutely divine with a little lipstick and blue eye shadow in that picture? Looks like he's already got a little rouge on.
posted by Atom12 at 8:37 AM on January 30, 2003


I actually don't have a problem with CCTV. This is connected to my belief that the authorities just aren't technically competent enough to make proper use of it.
posted by Summer at 8:45 AM on January 30, 2003


Quonsar -

Is it just me, or would Tom Ridge look absolutely divine with a little lipstick and blue eye shadow in that picture? Looks like he's already got a little rouge on.


Slap some lipstick on that pig and sell it? :-)

Quick question for the data and trivia experts out there. Which country has the most "material breeches" of UN mandates and resolutions? Shall we commence with the attack immediately?
posted by nofundy at 8:45 AM on January 30, 2003


Any other current examples of civil liberties being eroded quite so outrageously where you live?

Yes. Yes. Yes.

?.
posted by four panels at 9:00 AM on January 30, 2003



posted by MrMoonPie at 9:20 AM on January 30, 2003


four panels, your thomas link is to a temp file. Were you trying to link to the USA PATRIOT Act?
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:24 AM on January 30, 2003


Hmm, I don't know. I think I'm actually on the side of the grass on this one. But I do spend a lot of time in France and get really steamed when I see people stepping out of bounds and walking on les pelouses interdit. I also am a person who will walk on paths instead of cutting across the grass unless I am there to enjoy the particular pleasures of walking on said grass. Nothing I hate to see more than a lawn struggling for recovery. Okay, I used to cut patterns in lawns while under contract for yard care... now where did I put those meds?
posted by Dick Paris at 9:27 AM on January 30, 2003


Which country has the most "material breeches" of UN mandates and resolutions?

Israel and Turkey are the names that keep coming up; we've discussed it previously.
posted by mr_roboto at 9:30 AM on January 30, 2003


Any other current examples of civil liberties being eroded quite so outrageously where you live?

Troll much?

This is a case of a preventative measure to prevent soil erosion to the park, not erosion of civil liberties.
Note that the spokesman said "The fact is no rallies of any size are allowed in the royal parks at this time of year."
posted by DBAPaul at 9:38 AM on January 30, 2003


Worried for the state of the grass in rainy England? You have got to be kidding me. The Museumplein in Amsterdam is a large grassy area permanently used a large playground (soccer, biking, etc). When it gets nasty, it gets taken care of and in about 1-2 weeks it looks just fine. I might be wrong, but I think all the rain that falls on us helps lots.

Anybody who is concerned about the health of grass in a rainy country should maybe look into why 500,000 free thinking humans protest a war being organized by ex-draft dodgers. Take that path and the grass problems quickly become highly trivial.
posted by magullo at 10:17 AM on January 30, 2003


Note that the spokesman said "The fact is no rallies of any size are allowed in the royal parks at this time of year."

Yeh? Spokesmen tend to say a lot of things, DBAP, but widescale marching in Hyde Park in Feb 91 was deemed acceptable. Of course, that was under the green-unfriendly Conservative government.
posted by skellum at 10:21 AM on January 30, 2003


There is nothing in the linked article that says or implies that the '91 protest was accepted, indeed It sounds as if the protesters "went ahead" in the park in spite of bans/laws.

So now we have protesters wanting to violate the ban. If history repeats itself there will be injuries and damages. And who will be responsible for paying the damages and injuries?
posted by DBAPaul at 11:29 AM on January 30, 2003


If history repeats itself there will be injuries and damages.

Have they considered stopping the war for the same reason?
posted by skellum at 11:52 AM on January 30, 2003


And who will be responsible for paying the damages and injuries?

We'll have a rally! At St. James Park! A "Save the Turf at Hyde Park" rally. We'll get bands, and vendors, and...
posted by Ufez Jones at 12:06 PM on January 30, 2003


Just to backtrack a touch to spokesmen and their credibility, here's Fleischer responding to today's eight man European billet doux "The president expresses his gratitude to the many leaders of Europe who obviously feel differently [from Nelson Mandella]," Mr Fleischer said. "He understands there are going to be people who are more comfortable doing nothing about a growing menace that could turn into a holocaust."

So now the causus belli is to prevent a holocaust? Chilllinger and chillinger.
posted by skellum at 12:27 PM on January 30, 2003


And one of the proposed US flag designs had the words "Don't Tread on Me", now I understand.
posted by DBAPaul at 2:28 PM on January 30, 2003


I actually don't have a problem with CCTV. This is connected to my belief that the authorities just aren't technically competent enough to make proper use of it.

Silly me, and I though only the US crushed civil liberties. You learn something new everyday. Wait, I know the difference is in the UK (as explained here ) the of use cameras is ok just because. Sorry for violating the MIFI manifesto; let me please state for the record: America is evil in whatever it does and no government Europe in can do any wrong (even when European governments do the same thing for longer and to a much greater extent).
posted by Bag Man at 2:42 PM on January 30, 2003


I was in london about two weeks ago, and stayed at a hostel across from hyde park.

For 3 days straight it snowed constantly. The morning my wife and I left I took one last walk around hyde park. The snow had finally mostly melted, but when I took one step off the pathway my foot sunk down about 2 inches into pure mud (under the grass).

It may be completely different now, but if not I can't imagine why anyone would want to have a large gathering in hyde park. It would be a complete mess.
posted by justgary at 5:41 PM on January 30, 2003


Er, BagMan, my comment was supposed to be lighthearted and was targetted at the amazingly technically incompetent UK government. Calm down.
posted by Summer at 3:22 AM on January 31, 2003


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