Threats, epithets, abuse

Ben Riley-Smith at the The Telegraph reports a febrile atmosphere in Labour politics at the moment:

Labour MPs have been forced to call in the police over death threats in the last 48 hours after they refused to back Jeremy Corbyn, The Telegraph has learnt.

Vicky Foxcroft, a Labour whip, received a call to her constituency office which said: “If she doesn’t support Corbyn I will come down to the office and kick the fuck out of you.”

Police officers had to rush her office, close the shutters and attempt to trace the call after the man said he was on his way and hung up.

Another MP received a threat to her or his child.

Lucy Powell, the former shadow education secretary, received a message telling her to kill herself after announcing she would leave the frontbench over frustrations with the leadership.

It was among a string of messages laden with expletives and personal abuse which have been passed onto police.

A fourth Labour MP said they had become so concerned with the torrent of online abuse that they have forwarded the messages to police, while scores of others raised concerns.

It’s the Twitter effect. People think this is just how you express dissent now.

Politicians and staff were said to be in tears over the abuse comes just weeks after the brutal murder of Jo Cox, the Labour MP for Batley and Spen who was shot and stabbed in her constituency.

A Labour source said: “Women MPs have been subjected to the most vile stuff – we’re going to rape you, kill you. There have been people in tears today.”

“Just weeks”? Not really – or only just: only just barely two weeks, which makes it not really “just weeks” but rather “just two weeks.” “Just weeks” sounds like at least five weeks. It was just the other day. It was recent. Way way way too recent to forget.

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