PAD/ 004 – We are here, because you were there

Magnolia Tree

In pursuance of the powers vested in me by section 32 of the Police Act 1964, I, Right Honourable William Whitelaw, one of Her Majesty’s Principal Secretaries of State, hereby appoint the Right Honourable Lord Scarman to inquire urgently into the serious disorder in Brixton on 10 to 12 April 1981 and to report, with the power to make recommendations. *

Stories keeps being told, this is a tolerant country. It’s official.

Britain is tolerant, fair and just. There isn’t a race problem. Never was.

People who are different are treated the same. Tolerated. As long as they don’t make a difference.

Small minorities are accepted as long as they stay small.

Get to ‘swamping’, and then these minorities become a threat.

They start to threaten the whole fabric of the superior British characteristics.

Tolerance, liberty and civic duty. Values out the window, when the nation’s anxieties are raised.

Fear. And the country’s doors are closed.

The drawbridge raised.

Their shields are driving them back.

* The Brixton Disorders, 10-12 April 1981, Report of an Inquiry, By the Rt. Hon. The Lord Scarman, O.B.E, November 1981

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