Wednesday, April 05, 2006
Terrorism is the new rock and roll
Oh - my - God
Anti-terrorism detectives escorted a man from a plane after a taxi driver had become suspicious when he started singing along to The Clash.
Detectives halted the London-bound flight at Durham Tees Valley Airport and Harraj Mann, 24, was taken off.
The taxi driver became worried on the way to the airport because Mann had been singing along to The Clash's 1979 anthem "London Calling," which features the lyrics "Now war is declared -- and battle come down" while other lines warn of a "meltdown expected".
Mann told newspapers the taxi had been fitted with a music system which allowed him to plug in his MP3 player and he had been playing The Clash, Procol Harum, Led Zeppelin and the Beatles to the driver.
"He didn't like Led Zeppelin or The Clash but I don't think there was any need to tell the police," Mann told the Daily Mirror. A Durham police spokeswoman said Mann had been released after questioning -- but had missed his flight.
"The report was made with the best of intentions and we wouldn't want to discourage people from contacting us with genuine concerns," she said.
We've said it a thousand times, but it's worth repeating, just because its called "anti-terror legislation" does not mean it will be used to target terrorists. You could be an old man heckling at Labour Party conference, you could be demonstrating against capitalism or you could be out on the town and have been unwise enough to look foreign - you give the police the powers and they will misuse them. That goes for the incitement to religious hatred bill, ASBOs, the lot, they give them names you cannot possibly disagree with to act as a cover for the consistent accumulation of power in the hands of the state. When even Rumpole of the Bailey opposes the terror legislation (that story in the Independent) you know they've gotta be wrong.
More and more Blair, Bush and co want to create a climate of fear where even the singing of classic lyrics can lead to you having your collar felt. Now I'm sure Joe Strummer is pleased he's still deemed so dangerous even from beyond the grave but as the Clash said "go easy... step lightly... stay free"