Davis campaign must examine Tory record on freedom

Guy Aitchison
18 June 2008

Guy Aitchison (London, OK): If we're going to support David Davis, then one thing we shouldn't let him do is frame the freedom debate in partisan terms.

Labour's current attempts to secure legislation allowing for 42 days detention without charge should be seen in the context of a two decades long erosion of civil liberties began under Thatcher (a point made by Michael Peel in the FT today).

It was the Tories who got the ball rolling by exending pre-charge detention to a week (justified or not) and it was they who in 1994 banned the right to silence and gave police more powers to stop protests and raves.

The debate to be had is not about the policies of any one government, or indeed any one party. It is a debate about how and why our political system has allowed the state to secure ever-more powers for itself without proper debate - and what can be done about it.

Is gesture politics hindering progress against racism?

We have all seen a huge explosion around the debate on structural racism in recent weeks.

But that has been accompanied by corporate statements that many activists say are meaningless and will lead to little change.

How true is that? How can the movement against racism deliver long-lasting change instead?

Join us on Thursday 9 July at 5pm UK time/12pm EDT for a free live discussion.

Hear from:

Sayeeda Warsi Member of the House of Lords, pro-vice chancellor at Bolton University and author of ‘The Enemy Within: A Tale of Muslim Britain’.

Sunder Katwala Director of British Future, a think-tank on identity and integration

Other speakers to be confirmed.

Had enough of ‘alternative facts’? openDemocracy is different Join the conversation: get our weekly email


We encourage anyone to comment, please consult the oD commenting guidelines if you have any questions.
Audio available Bookmark Check Language Close Comments Download Facebook Link Email Newsletter Newsletter Play Print Share Twitter Youtube Search Instagram WhatsApp yourData