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> Human Rights Act
Simon Kirby
post May 24 2011, 08:18 PM
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We've discussed it before I know, but it's cropped up again so I'd be interested to hear some more.

QUOTE (Turin Machine @ May 24 2011, 12:48 PM) *
"the Human Rights Act"

One of the greatest blights on English society today !

I think it's one of the most significant and valuable bits of legislation of the 20th century, guaranteeing a minimum standard of state morality that has taken the best part of a thousand years to achieve. It's not without it's critics either, but as hardly anyone actually understands what it says I'm curious to understand who's doing the hatchet job on it and why.

So is the HRA one of the greatest blights on English society today or one of the most significant and valuable bits of legislation of the 20th century?


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GMR
post May 24 2011, 08:35 PM
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QUOTE (Simon Kirby @ May 24 2011, 09:18 PM) *
We've discussed it before I know, but it's cropped up again so I'd be interested to hear some more.


I think it's one of the most significant and valuable bits of legislation of the 20th century, guaranteeing a minimum standard of state morality that has taken the best part of a thousand years to achieve. It's not without it's critics either, but as hardly anyone actually understands what it says I'm curious to understand who's doing the hatchet job on it and why.

So is the HRA one of the greatest blights on English society today or one of the most significant and valuable bits of legislation of the 20th century?



It is a shame then that others don't agree and want it changed.
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Richard Garvie
post May 24 2011, 08:49 PM
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I think it's a valuable piece of legislation, but we certainly need some significant changes to certain parts of it.
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Andy Capp
post May 24 2011, 08:55 PM
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I think it is what separates states from the moral to the draconian, although it hasn't seemingly prevented is from bombing the what-sit out of countries yet. I suppose it is work in progress.
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Richard Garvie
post May 24 2011, 09:00 PM
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QUOTE (Andy Capp @ May 24 2011, 08:55 PM) *
I think it is what separates states from the moral to the draconian, although it hasn't seemingly prevented is from bombing the what-sit out of countries yet. I suppose it is work in progress.


Exactly. Rather than scrap it, improve it.
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Simon Kirby
post May 24 2011, 09:01 PM
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QUOTE (Richard Garvie @ May 24 2011, 09:49 PM) *
I think it's a valuable piece of legislation, but we certainly need some significant changes to certain parts of it.

Specifically?


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Andy Capp
post May 24 2011, 09:01 PM
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I suppose the biggest reason people don't like it, is because the things it is meant to protect us from are assumed, while at the same time, the state is sometimes prevented form prosecuting justice that some people feel is appropriate.
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Richard Garvie
post May 24 2011, 09:19 PM
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QUOTE (Andy Capp @ May 24 2011, 09:01 PM) *
I suppose the biggest reason people don't like it, is because the things it is meant to protect us from are assumed, while at the same time, the state is sometimes prevented form prosecuting justice that some people feel is appropriate.


Agreed.
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Simon Kirby
post May 24 2011, 09:22 PM
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QUOTE (Andy Capp @ May 24 2011, 10:01 PM) *
I suppose the biggest reason people don't like it, is because the the things it is meant to protect us from are assumed, while at the same time, the state is some times prevented form prosecuting justice that some people feel is appropriate.

I agree with your assessment, but I don't think people are right on either count. The HRA has had an impact for the very reason that the basic rights it guarantees which you'd assume would be automatic in a civilised society were not previously respected by the state, and then when the HRA prevents the state from abusing those basic rights it turns out that people don't like it because actually when they engage their prejudices they're not really civilised anymore.

The HRA is a minimum standard of state morality, the problem is that Brits might not be ready to be that civilised yet.


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Jayjay
post May 24 2011, 09:28 PM
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In principle it is good, but does need amending. Today a burglar is asking for his sentence to be void as his five children are suffering. OK, but the families he stole off suffered, where are their human rights. Dangerous fugitives have escaped prison, but they cannot be named or their pictures shown as it may deny them their human rights. Some of these have gone on to do more serious crimes before they were arrested, others are still on the run.
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Richard Garvie
post May 24 2011, 09:39 PM
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QUOTE (Jayjay @ May 24 2011, 09:28 PM) *
In principle it is good, but does need amending. Today a burglar is asking for his sentence to be void as his five children are suffering. OK, but the families he stole off suffered, where are their human rights. Dangerous fugitives have escaped prison, but they cannot be named or their pictures shown as it may deny them their human rights. Some of these have gone on to do more serious crimes before they were arrested, others are still on the run.


You're right. I just think some legislation that goes through the house lacks common sense at times. Look at the super injunctions!!! (that's another thread)

As Simon says, with the HRA the basic rights it guarantees which you'd assume would be automatic in a civilised society were not previously respected by the state.
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Turin Machine
post May 24 2011, 09:47 PM
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When someone can come to this country illegally, stay, commit the most heinous crimes then be allowed to stay because his girlfriend has given birth and it would deny him his human right to a family life, Then its wrong.


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Turin Machine
post May 24 2011, 09:52 PM
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Indeed, like a lot of legislation dreamed up and inflicted on us, its got a kind of a kernal of sense but the way its enforced and translated it becomes a farce, and a dangerous one at that. And do we really need it here, what has it actually done apaert from drive a wedge into society , Oh and make a lot of lawyers very rich of course. I believe dear Cherie falls into that category.


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Simon Kirby
post May 24 2011, 09:58 PM
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QUOTE (Jayjay @ May 24 2011, 10:28 PM) *
In principle it is good, but does need amending. Today a burglar is asking for his sentence to be void as his five children are suffering. OK, but the families he stole off suffered, where are their human rights. Dangerous fugitives have escaped prison, but they cannot be named or their pictures shown as it may deny them their human rights. Some of these have gone on to do more serious crimes before they were arrested, others are still on the run.

The burgled family have a right of redress by suing for conversion and tort. The crime is also investigated by the police service and prosecuted by the state. The law is therefore compatible with the protection of the family's Article 8 right to respect for private and family life, and home.

If the burglar's imprisonment is not proportional to his crime, taking into consideration both the impact on the victim and the burglar's circumstances, then he'll have an arguable appeal. Locking up a father of five toddlers for nicking a packet of biscuits isn't really that civilised, but if his kids have all left school and he made off with a haul of antique furniture and old masters then it's pretty fair.

Do you have a reference to the dangerous fugitives who escaped prison but couldn't be named or identified for HR reasons? That certainly wasn't the case with the recent fugitive who's picture was on the TVP web site.


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Simon Kirby
post May 24 2011, 10:00 PM
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QUOTE (Turin Machine @ May 24 2011, 10:47 PM) *
When someone can come to this country illegally, stay, commit the most heinous crimes then be allowed to stay because his girlfriend has given birth and it would deny him his human right to a family life, Then its wrong.

Can you give a reference to that case please.


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Simon Kirby
post May 24 2011, 10:05 PM
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QUOTE (Turin Machine @ May 24 2011, 10:52 PM) *
Indeed, like a lot of legislation dreamed up and inflicted on us, its got a kind of a kernal of sense but the way its enforced and translated it becomes a farce, and a dangerous one at that. And do we really need it here, what has it actually done apaert from drive a wedge into society , Oh and make a lot of lawyers very rich of course. I believe dear Cherie falls into that category.

Can you say specifically what is farcical? What wedge do you suggest it has driven?

One of the things the HRA does is guarantee your right to criticise the state, and that's a necessary right in a free society, and one the state isn't very happy about.


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Simon Kirby
post May 24 2011, 10:08 PM
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QUOTE (Richard Garvie @ May 24 2011, 09:49 PM) *
I think it's a valuable piece of legislation, but we certainly need some significant changes to certain parts of it.

Specifically Richard, can you say specifically what you don't like and what you'd change.


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Richard Garvie
post May 24 2011, 10:14 PM
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QUOTE (Simon Kirby @ May 24 2011, 10:08 PM) *
Specifically Richard, can you say specifically what you don't like and what you'd change.


There are just the odd cases like previously mentioned where the act seems perverse. Don't get me wrong, I'm no daily mail reader, but when you see things like fare dodgers being discharged because of excuses they give in court or footballers dodging driving band because they blame their speeding on the need to go to the toilet, that's where it gets a bit silly and provide clever lawyers with loopholes. We just need a bit of common sense with these things, but I certainly see your point RE: basic standards afforded to a human etc.
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Ron
post May 24 2011, 10:18 PM
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QUOTE (Simon Kirby @ May 24 2011, 11:00 PM) *
Can you give a reference to that case please.


This was covered by the national press, tv and radio. From memory he was an Iraqi who ran down a young girl, whilst unlicensed or insured, and left her to die whilst he was an illegal immigrant awaiting deportation. When he came out of jail after a short sentence he then claimed his HR as indicated in the piece referred to.
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Turin Machine
post May 24 2011, 10:22 PM
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Thanks Ron, thats the one, plenty more like it though! its a sort of scummers get out of jail free card.


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