11 January, 2011


What's coming over Auntie?

A BBC News report begins:
Nine men have been arrested as part of a police investigation into sexual exploitation of teenage girls in Greater Manchester.

They were held on suspicion of rape, inciting child prostitution, allowing a premises to be used for prostitution and sexual activity with a child.

The Asian men, aged between 20 and 40 from Rochdale and Heywood, were arrested on 21 December.
Asian men? Not MONAs?

And later on we have this gratuitous paragraph:
A Greater Manchester Police (GMP) statement read: "It is our policy not to confirm the ethnicity of people arrested unless it is relevant to the crime - in this case it isn't."
Editorial peasants revolting then, Auntie? Or differently™ revolting than usual, anyway.

Interesting. Very interesting.

Edwin-here's a possible explanation- GMP could have released the names of the nine arrested men and simultaneously kept to its 'policy' of not confirming their 'ethnicity'.

However, if it had named them, any fool could tell if their background was Hindu, Sikh or Muslim, and drawn their own conclusions.So, paradoxically, a report, like this one from Auntie, that withholds names but refers vaguely to 'Asian ethnicity', imparts less information than a report that complies with GMP policy! QED?

Indeed, Mark, but even if the BBC journo had been personally introduced to each of the perps, standard operating procedure would be to keep well shtum about their embarrassing ethnicity in published reports.

So what's going on? Is someone breaking ranks and being honest? Or do they perhaps realize that the game is up, that the public will automatically assume that the offenders are "Pakis", so the response is to go on the offensive with a variant of the "Look, these guys just happen to be "Asian", but that's not important — White men do this sort of thing too" tactic. (Which must be the longest adjectival phrase I've ever written.)

Maybe the Beeb's on the defensive. All interesting stuff.

I think all the progressives are on the defensive. About time too.

Edwin- none of the other reports I've read have named the 9 men arrested, so I don't think this is the Beeb breaking ranks. In other reports the names also appear to have been withheld, and the statement from Ch Supt O'Hare has been quoted from instead.

Perhaps Ch Supt O'Hare is following 'revised guidelines' from ACPO ? As you'll remember, the policy of 'not confirming the ethnicity of people arrested' started around 30 years ago, when a few uncouth individuals suggested (entirely without hard evidence, or course) that there was some sort of linkage between street robbery and West Indian youth. Given that not all West Indian youths arrested for street robbery in the 80s were called Winston, Lloyd, Leroy or Luther, naming the arrestees but withholding 'irrelevant' details such as their ethnicity served the purposes of the righteous. However, in 2011, that policy doesn't work if, say, Muslims or West Africans are being arrested and convicted disproportionately for certain offences.

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