What’s the difference between a wheelchair and a stick..?

Last Thursday 9th of December the crucial vote on Tuition Fees was held, as we now know, the Lib Dem MPs allowed the vote to pass, despite their personal pledges to the contrary ( read @Gaijinsan21 s far superior explanation about why I am calling them “personal”.. )

This post is not about that however but a story which needs telling, Jody McIntyre’s story.  On Friday last week I read Jody’s account of his day and in particular his brushes with the police.  I was horrified to hear how he was twice pulled from his wheelchair and forcibly moved.  In time however, I began to think that perhaps he had exaggerated or that by putting himself in the front line as he does, maybe he antagonized the situation? 

This footage was uploaded to Youtube today by Jody, taken by a by-stander.  It has been lightened and sharpened by @Harbonaut < #ff please!

In it you can clearly see, as Jody had described last week, a police officer striding over to him in order to remove him from the area.  I believe it is the same officer who is, himself, dragged away from the scene shortly afterwards by his colleagues. 

So far all I have seen reported on the news is violence by the students.  I understand that at this moment there is a young man, Alfie Meadows, who is in hospital, recovering from a truncheon-inflicted brain injury which required a 3 hour operation.  We have also heard much about Camilla being “poked with a stick” by a student, very frightening I am sure but perhaps a little perspective newsteams? 

So what’s the difference between a wheelchair and a stick?

*UPDATED 14th Dec* : BBC News report of this evening on the incident involving Jody…  Watch the end, the interviewer tries to twist the story to make Jody the villain.. Jody stands up for himself, Alfie Meadows and the other students admirably and gets the message about unfair tuition fees across really well, kudos mate.

Here is the footage:

The Young Ones…

Students are getting a bad press at the moment, it really is like we’ve gone back to the 80’s where students were “The Young Ones”.  Earnest, vegetarian, peacemaker Neil, rebellious Rick, smashing-things-up Vyvyan and way-too-old-to-be-a student Whatshisname, the boring guy…

    

The students who are protesting now are not “The Young Ones” but mostly bloody fantastic kids, brought together to fight against a very unfair rise to tuition fees.  They are not even demonstrating for themselves in truth, as these rises may not affect them personally so they are taking action for every younger kid in this country who wants to have a decent education.  MY kids.. not old enough to demonstrate, will hopefully benefit from the actions being taken today. YOUR kids.. OUR kids..

For most of these students, the contact they have with the police during the protests, will be the first contact made.  Like my kids, they have been brought up to respect and fear the police, I pray the police do not abuse this respect by continuous kettling.  Last week I was horrified to see pictures of OUR kids, being contained for hours against their will by the police.  Yes, there was violence at the first protest. No, that does not mean that all students are there for a fight.

Schoolgirl Protestors Protect Police Van

They are demonstrating, legally and in the only way possible to prevent the unfair rises in tuition fees, despite what Nick Clegg may say to the contrary. NO rise is fair Nick!  Your party, the Liberal Democrats (timely reminder) know and oppose this and ANY rise in fees.  YOU signed a pledge, along with your fellow members to VOTE AGAINST a rise in fees, now your own Universities Minister, Vince Cable is frantically back-peddaling on this pledge in order to keep favour with your Masters, the Conservatives.   Following your targetting of them, many of the protesting students voted Lib Dem in the 2010 General Election, they voted for your FAIRNESS, for your CHANGE.. change they certainly have, but any fairness has been stamped upon.

The rises in tuition fees are a blatant attempt by the government to reduce the uptake in University places.  By setting the fees so high (up to £9000 p.a) they are effectively preventing poorer kids from continuing their education. I know that as a single parent, I will be unable to support my children through University so they will either have to take out loans or give up on their dreams.  In the long-run, I suspect the state will be poorer for this tax-wise and will continue to bring in “foreign talent” to fill the “high-brow” vacancies.

You don’t have to travel that far back in history to find Thomas Paine standing up for the Rights Of Man  “Government’s sole purpose is safeguarding the individual and his/her inherent, inalienable rights; each societal institution that does not benefit the nation is illegitimate — especially the Monarchy, the Nobility, and the Military”

So glad to read tonight that the Welsh Assmbley have promised that no domiliciled Welsh student, studying in England will have to pay the tuition fees.

I’ll leave you with this.. “Rar Rar Rar, We’re Going To Smash The Oiks” :

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