Academic level discourse

TheLocalYokel

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An interesting but complex topic to debate! Then add in the reasoning behind perceptions of what is a profession and what is not.

In my eyes Law, Medicine (human and veterinary), Engineering, Science, Art. We could also consider Pilots and the Military. I wonder whether Sports heroes can be classed in the same way, although their chosen sport nurtures their natural ability, they aren't dealing with the complexities of developing a vaccine, for example.
The Military - that's an interesting suggestion. Do you include 'squaddies' or just the senior ranks?

One measure of a profession might be the need for formal qualifications, such as happens in the Law and Medicine, together with a disciplinary body with power to enforce the disciplinary and ethical codes under which practitioners operate.

Acting is often spoken of as a profession but I've never been convinced that it has the necessary base to rank alongside the likes of Medicine and the Law. I would argue the same with Art.

Accountancy is another occupation that might hold up well to the profession argument, as would teaching/lecturing.
 

Sherburnflyer92

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If we include the military services then we must @TheLocalYokel then we must include the three thin lines - Blue, Red, Green. Police, Fire and Ambulance/NHS which are vocations not just “jobs”. Jobs none the less at the end of the day but still vocations.
 
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TheLocalYokel

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If we include the military services then we must @TheLocalYokel then we must include the three thin lines - Blue, Red, Green. Police, Fire and Ambulance which are vocations not just “jobs”. Jobs none the less at the end of the day but still vocations.
You've added another interesting element. Are vocations professions? Or perhaps just some of them with the Church (of whichever religion) perhaps an example.
 

Sherburnflyer92

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Now where channeling a different avenue.

However today, I was pondering, fatigued, is priest a career/job? Or a calling?

Vocation for me is something you give your life to. Therefore the police, fire, NHS, military services, politics, aviation old all be vocations. Therefore they sit in the same category, for me anyway, as priests.
 

Kevin Farnell

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So, Professor Kevin is, in my opinion, an apparent natural Scientist.
Thanks for the compliment, but I could never accept the title Professor'. This is simply because I've worked with several Professors who had a much greater knowledge of the subject than I ever will. I have such great respect for them that for me to accept the title, I would see as an insult to them.

Regards.

Kevin
 

JENNYJET

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Then the compliment remains if not the title. My understanding is that a Professional is the opposite to an Amateur in sporting endeavours. In the 'Professions ', Teaching, Nursing, Policing for example, a qualifying degree is the basic foundation before the specific professional training begins. In the legal field, a qualifying Law degree is the educational element followed by a Legal Practice course or Pupillage depending whether being a Solicitor or Barrister is the important Professional development needed.

With The Church of England , a similar pathway exists together with a Vocational interrogation of motives.

Acting has it's academic foundation, RADA being the Academy in Britain and The Academy of Motion Pictures in USA. All the above plus Association Football having Club Academies under OFSTED supervision, can lay claim to be amongst the Professions. Plumbers, Gas Engineers or what was once the Trades may also lay claim to being professional. It all ends with a Societal perception of human activities.

I thank everyone for their contributions.
 

TheLocalYokel

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The Global Warming/Cooling thread is attracting some passionate comment about environmental demonstrations. There is a school of thought in that thread that the authorities, ie police forces around the country in the main, should adopt a much more hard-line response to such activities as blocking roads. There is even a suggestion that the police should use tasers against demonstrators.

Rather than go too far off topic in that thread I wondered about members' attitudes to 'tougher' policing generally in response to anti-social behaviour. It has been said that in the territory 'controlled' by the Krays minor crime and anti-social behaviour committed by others was almost unheard of unless the Krays had sanctioned it. Street robberies on elderly ladies for instance were taboo as it was known the twins would not allow it. The IRA too had a sort of policing role in their area based on fear.

Traditionally policing in Britain has been based on the consent of the people. There has never been a separate body for controlling riots let alone demonstrations and anti-social behaviour by hooligans.

That is in contrast to the paramilitary CRS in France or the Civil Guard in Spain and Carabiniere in Italy which are both police forces with links to the military.

Do we need a separate body in the UK trained and equipped to deal with public disorder, whether football hooligans running amok, demonstrations and marches, general loutish and drunken behaviour by large groups in Anytown city centre at weekends?

If there was a separate body to deal with these types of incidents its members would still have to act within the law which means using no more than reasonable force in the circumstances when effecting arrests or when managing demonstrators or others. This rules out the use of tasers on people sitting in a road in all but the most exceptional of circumstances.

Or does the law allow too much latitude when actions in support of a cause (the legal right to protest peacefully) begin to move into the criminal, eg obstructing the highway?
 

Kevin Farnell

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There are a lot of questions there, TLY. I'm not sure how I feel about a separate Police body to deal with rioters/demonstrators etc and I certainly don't like the idea of Policing by fear. What I would like to see, is examples being made of those who demonstrate illegally (I've said before, that I'm happy with peaceful protest such as standing at the roadside with banners and placards, but disrupting daily life is unacceptable and to be honest, puts me off their ideas). I was watching one of the protestors being interviewed a few days ago (GBNews, I think). who said he was arrested, taken to a Police station and put in a cell for a couple of hours. After which, he was released without charge only to re-offend the next day. Why wasn't he charged? A spell in jail or at least a hefty fine might make him and others think a bit harder about their actions.

Kevin
 

TheLocalYokel

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I agree with you about a reluctance to support the idea of a separate organisation for public order.

What I would like to see though are regional police forces. In my area which is within the government region of the south-west there are five police forces, two of which are of a medium size with the other three small in size (in my lifetime there used to be more - eleven I think or it might have been twelve).

Over the past 200 years many forces have consolidated from the times when small boroughs had tiny police forces. Most were absorbed into the local county force as the years went by. The last major amalgamations were in 1974 at a time of root and branch local government reorganisation.

Having larger provincial forces around the country (there are already some fairly large ones) would in my view increase efficiency if at the expense of some local knowledge, but that has already been eroded to an extent with many forces pooling some resources.

When these mass public order events occur some smaller forces haven't the staffing levels to react as quickly as they and the public would like. They invariably have to summon mutual aid from neighbouring forces (at a financial cost to the host force) as well as pulling away many of their own officers from other areas of their force, leaving those areas without police cover.

As regards the protestor being released without being charged, the Crown Prosecution Service has the ultimate responsibility for deciding whether to charge. In principle it's a good thing because the CPS has the legal capacity for such a role and, in theory at least, it ought to make for even policies around the country.
 

Sherburnflyer92

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The trouble is @Kevin Farnell that is where in the problem lies. Lock them up, naughty slap, released the next day.

This is why, I'm advocating, the only way to start making example is using the tasers on them. Yes it's not pleasant, okay it'll be filmed more then likely, and will provoke a response. But let's be honest the majority of the public would be supportive of this. Like you I'm all for peaceful protesting, okay with marching through city centres week in week out etc. What I'm not for is blocking M25 and the port of dover (like last Friday) for their cause. It's about time we made example of them.... act like this and you'll end up tasered. Remember the Student protests a few years into the coalition government. The police didn't mess about there nor weren't afraid to make examples of them. Why now?

If the police don't act, I'm sure eventually, someone in the public will. And it'll be a brawl. That is something we don't need but if we dont get a grip, make examples, we are heading towards that with them. Taser and injunction the whole lot.

It is time to make them a terrorist organisation as that is what they are on the whole. But then that is treading a fine line isn't it. Put them on the list and you cannot be seen as a credible serious government wanting to exercise and invite change on the green agenda. But what else is there to do? Like seriously. Where is our legal mind? @JENNYJET :)
 

Sherburnflyer92

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@TheLocalYokel the trouble with policing is it either covers vast vast areas that are less densely populated or smaller more densely populated. I have no idea of the policing structure in terms of teams, hierarchy, structure of the policing within each force. If you have one big force covering a vast area, which I like the idea on paper, you risk at big events pulling your resource from one part of the coverage area to the localised area that then needs it. Does that work?

Personally what needs to happen, which is unlikely to, is an increase of policing.

Currently there are 67,886,011 citizens in the UK. UK police force numbers stand at at 135,301. That is 1 police officer to every 501 citizens. I would like to see that increase to 1 police officer to every 250 citizens. Therefore doubling the police force. That will not happen overnight. But there should be a long term plan. Of course to achieve that objective there are many variables to take into consideration, some easy and some not so easy to account for. Maybe the first objective should be getting 1:400. That I believe takes the force up to 170,000 officers. No small feet when you look at but investment is worth it.

Of course we the tax payer pay for this. And that's about getting corporations to pay their fair share (google, amazon, Starbucks). Coupled with the fire service, NHS, Social Care and Teachers and other public servant staff fighting for your attention it soon becomes a nightmare to work budgets out. But then that's where levelling up the economic power of the country, truly unlocking areas with true economic power (Nuclear power plants in ex mining towns anyone>), job prospects in those areas and others with good wages etc comes into it. And here we go; I'm canvassing for your vote. Except I'm not.
 

TheLocalYokel

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@TheLocalYokel the trouble with policing is it either covers vast vast areas that are less densely populated or smaller more densely populated. I have no idea of the policing structure in terms of teams, hierarchy, structure of the policing within each force. If you have one big force covering a vast area, which I like the idea on paper, you risk at big events pulling your resource from one part of the coverage area to the localised area that then needs it. Does that work?

Personally what needs to happen, which is unlikely to, is an increase of policing.

Currently there are 67,886,011 citizens in the UK. UK police force numbers stand at at 135,301. That is 1 police officer to every 501 citizens. I would like to see that increase to 1 police officer to every 250 citizens. Therefore doubling the police force. That will not happen overnight. But there should be a long term plan. Of course to achieve that objective there are many variables to take into consideration, some easy and some not so easy to account for. Maybe the first objective should be getting 1:400. That I believe takes the force up to 170,000 officers. No small feet when you look at but investment is worth it.

Of course we the tax payer pay for this. And that's about getting corporations to pay their fair share (google, amazon, Starbucks). Coupled with the fire service, NHS, Social Care and Teachers and other public servant staff fighting for your attention it soon becomes a nightmare to work budgets out. But then that's where levelling up the economic power of the country, truly unlocking areas with true economic power (Nuclear power plants in ex mining towns anyone>), job prospects in those areas and others with good wages etc comes into it. And here we go; I'm canvassing for your vote. Except I'm not.
You're right about police forces pulling resources from other areas from their force area to deal with major events but that already happens. Larger forces would provide greater flexibility of operation.

Police can only use such force as is reasonable in the circumstances to arrest or manage incidents. The circumstances of the student protests that turned violent at times would probably allow a higher degree of force to deal with the situation, but in the end only a court can judge how much. Where people sit down in the road and passively refuse to move it's highly unlikely that a court would decide that the same level of force by the police was reasonable.

As for using tasers on passive road-blockers, I can't think of any circumstances where the current law would deem the use of a taser reasonable. In fact, a police officer who did so would probably find him or herself before the court charged with an assault.

The police cannot be expected to act outside the law. When there is evidence that they have they are dealt with. Two or three years ago a female officer in Bristol was charged in connection with what was deemed unlawful use of a taser when she and a male colleague confronted an individual they believed was wanted by police (wrongly as it turned out). I believe the court acquitted her but it shows how officers have to be very careful with tasers.

It's easy for us to say the police should come down harder on the environmentalists who, although often acting in a way that disrupts society, generally don't enter into circumstances that would justify a harder (which really means a more violent) police approach.

If society really believes that passive protesting ought to be liable to a much firmer police approach then the law must be changed to permit it, ie allow a less restrictive definition to how much force is reasonable in the circumstances. I would support that although I doubt that tasering would be permitted.

Addendum

I don't know if the new Police Bill about which there have been many 'Kill the Bill' protests addresses this in any way.
 
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Aviador

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What separates a legal demonstration from public disobedience and public disorder should be made clearer if it isn't clear enough in the eyes of the law.

In my opinion, standing at the side of the road with placards and chanting your discourse is fine. If however you are blocking the highway preventing the passage of persons or vehicles, or preventing formal public or private meetings from taking place, it should be considered as breaking the law.

These environmentalist nutcases having so-called "die-ins" at public events such as planning meetings should be handcuffed and removed, forcibly if necessary if they are preventing day to day proceedings.

I don't have a clue so far as how the law works in these circumstances but whatever the law states, it certainly does feel like the Police are restricted and have little powers to deal with these type of events.

Interestingly though as historical events seem to suggest the law does have sufficient powers. For example the minors were forcibly removed by Police horses during the minors strikes. Similar levels of public disobedience was seen during the Poll tax protests which saw a similar response from the Police.
 

TheLocalYokel

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The poll tax and student demonstrations and, to a degree the miners' industrial action, generated significant levels of violence by protestors, in which case the courts would almost certainly agree that those circumstances allowed the police to use a greater degree of force in effecting arrests.

Passive resistance such as lying in roads but not threatening or engaging in violence undoubtedly lowers the reasonable force threshold and it's more difficult for police to say that the same amount of force used to deal with violent protestors was reasonable in circumstances which involved inert people blocking roads.

Police powers to use force revolve around what is reasonable and proportionate in any given set of circumstances and the law is set out in section 3 of the Criminal Law Act 1967 and s 117 of the Police and Criminal Act 1984.
 

Sherburnflyer92

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Whilst not threatening or engaging in violence it still is unlawful. It is causing economic damage on the local areas let alone the societal implications form these nutcases really don't seem all too bothered about. I think I'd be smacking one if I had to get somewhere such as a Hospital or to a loved one who was dying.

We either injunction them on ALL motorways, A Roads, Airports, Ports, Train Stations, and arrest and lock away even for 72 hours or we move them. With slight aggression.

Is this public disorder? Honestly someone needs to get a grip of these people before the public let rip. And let rip they will as we are all getting end of our tether.
 

TheLocalYokel

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I accept all that you say, and agree with much of it, but the law is clear that the use of force by police (and anyone else effecting a lawful arrest for that matter) must be reasonable in any particular circumstance. Obviously a modicum of force is required to physically remove people lying or sitting in the road, but the idea that the police could go in gung-ho and give passive protestors a rough time whilst arresting them is not supported in law.

The result would be individual police officers in court facing assault charges. Protestors know this and there are some who will try to provoke officers into over-reacting. The news media will report any suggestion of 'police brutality' which keeps the protestors' cause in the public spotlight.

Injunctions certainly have their place but protest groups can be ingenious, and are usually well advised legally, and find ways of furthering their cause without breaching an injunction.

The methods that many zealots use are completely disproportionate to the message they seek to deliver and, as you point out, actually cause more damage to society in the short term than climate change.

I agree entirely that methods must be found to prevent their worst excesses. All I've been trying to do is point out that the police use of force is constrained by the law.
 

JENNYJET

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I have followed with interest this debate, sadly from my bed following a medical incident connected to underlying illness.

I'll refer members to the Tony Martin case, the chap that shot intruders to his home. The appeal court released him from his prison sentance as it deemed his use of force was reasonable.

The use of force is relative to the circumstances and must be used accordingly. Some would suggest removing protesters by force from the motorway, with the risk of ripping hands off arms, I would accept the use of the animal ranks as they have no competence in the law but the handlers do. I repeat my previous comments, if there is a law being breached, the Police have a duty to enforce that law, in situ if necessary. The court will decide on the evidence according to law. Both sides will have questions to answer.

The Miners were dealt with in the way they were because it was a direct challenge to Police, Orgreave being the example and was supposedly sanctioned by No.10.

The modern world has been infected by mobile camera phones and people that devote their lives to filming misery of others. Have a prang in one's vehicle in a sensitive place, outside a school, and hey presto, they materialise out of thin air. And the less savoury broadcasters pay for this stuff.
 

TheLocalYokel

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I'm very sorry to hear that a medical incident has intruded. I know all members will join me in wishing you well in overcoming this particular incident.

My recollection of the Tony Martin Case differs slightly. He shot at two intruders at his farmhouse killing one and wounding another. He was subsequently charged with murder, unlawful wounding and a firearms offence. He was convicted of murder by a majority verdict and sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum of nine years to be served, later reduced to eight years by the Lord Chief Justice.

The following year the Appeal Court rejected his conviction appeal that was based on the grounds that he acted in self-defence. However, evidence was produced that he suffered from paranoid personality disorder leading the Appeal Court to substitute a manslaughter conviction for the murder conviction. The prison sentence was then reduced to five years.

He later became eligible for early release and parole but the parole board rejected his application. The High Court supported the parole board's decision.

After three years in prison he was released, a reduction following good behaviour in prison.

The Lord Chief Justice said, Mr Martin was entitled to use reasonable force to protect himself and his home, but the jury were surely correct in coming to their judgment that Mr Martin was not acting reasonably in shooting one of the intruders, who happened to be 16, dead and seriously injuring the other.
 

JENNYJET

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I have not read transcripts so do not know what was said by the original trial judge in summing up by which a jury is directed through the law.

However, later intervention resulted in Mr. Martin being released from his sentance. Not exonerated but released.

This is the beauty of law, open to interpretation at any level.
 

TheLocalYokel

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I have not read transcripts so do not know what was said by the original trial judge in summing up by which a jury is directed through the law.

However, later intervention resulted in Mr. Martin being released from his sentance. Not exonerated but released.

This is the beauty of law, open to interpretation at any level.
The jury was given the option at the original trial of convicting for manslaughter instead of murder but convicted of murder on a 10-2 majority.

The acceptance by the Appeal Court that he suffered from paranoid personality disorder led that court to judge that a conviction for manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility was appropriate.

Martin was released after three years of his substituted five-year sentence. His release at that time was reportedly based on his good behaviour in prison and came several months after the parole board rejected his release on parole, supported by the High Court.

I can't find anything in reports of the case that suggest the Appeal Court believed his actions reasonable in the circumstances or that this court ordered his release. Indeed, he remained in prison for over two years after the Appeal Court rejected his appeal, albeit substituting a manslaughter conviction..

The Martin case has always divided public opinion and it's easy to see why. I find it difficult not to have at least some sympathy for his actions.
 
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