Letter: The British government wages war then thinks it can define extremism

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Letters to editor
A letter from Louis Shawcross:

What an absolute farce that we have a Conservative government making new definitions of extremism bringing in what people tweet and/or what people chant whilst protesting on the streets, when they, the same British Conservative government, are selling arms to repressive regimes across the world and have actually recently joined the US in a bombing campaign.

You couldn't make it up! There are people now residing in British prisons for selling ‘stickers’. Now, I can't imagine any slogan on any sticker that comes anywhere close to the extremism now taking place in Gaza which the British Conservative government seem in no hurry to neutralise.

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In fact, even having a debate in the House of Commons seems beyond the realms of decency for large swathes of the Members of Parliament, but are happy selling of arms to states across the world who are presently and happily blowing human beings to bits, or supposedly will at some future date use those arms acquired from British firms to blow people to bits.

Is it not true that people are being blown to bits in Yemen and is it not also true the British government is supporting Saudi Arabia in that conflict where people are being blown to bits? And this form of extremism if we can stretch the meaning of the term to include blowing human beings to bits, seems "not a problem" in the course of mainstream thinking and commentary.

The British government could be suffering from what's called ‘cognitive dissonance’, but that would be giving it a distinction approaching respectability. A better term would be ‘extremist’, ironically.

The British government seem more reluctant to displease the arms manufacturers and their share holders rather than protecting innocent lives here and abroad and actually making inroads into banning war. Imagine that. Imagine a British government intent on banning war; but it's these very convictions which are exactly what they seem to be wanting to label ‘extremist’.

Louis Shawcross, Hillsborough, Co Down