A sinister message

A few more turns of the screw in Scotland:

Police Scotland is setting up a dedicated hate crime unit ahead of Humza Yousaf‘s hugely controversial new laws coming into force early next year, it can be revealed.

The unit is expected to go live in November and training of the force’s 16,400 officers gets underway in December in preparation for the Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Act being implemented in early 2024. The legislation consolidates existing law and extends protection for vulnerable groups with a new offence of “stirring up hatred”.

So we can expect even more of the kind of opinion-sniffing and women-punishing that prompted Women Won’t Wheesht. What a brilliant plan!

Under the Act, offences are considered “aggravated” – which could influence sentencing – if they involve prejudice on the basis of age, disability, race, religion, sexual orientation, transgender identity or variations in sex characteristics.

But not, of course, sex. Never sex. Women never matter; women must never be allowed to matter. Prejudice against women doesn’t count, because women are so awful that prejudice is completely reasonable and fair.

Helen Joyce, director of advocacy with human rights group Sex Matters, said: “The establishment of a new, dedicated hate crime unit at Police Scotland sends a sinister message to those who advocate for women’s and children’s rights.

“People need to be able to speak the truth about sex to stand up for their own rights and to carry out safeguarding. Women can’t explain why so-called ‘trans women’ shouldn’t be allowed to compete in women’s sports without saying that, as a matter of material reality, ‘trans women’ are men.

“Are we going to see teachers who say that boys who identify as girls can’t go into the girls’ changing rooms pursued by this new police unit? If ‘misgendering’ counts as a hate crime, then people who simply speak the truth risk a criminal record, and it is chilling to think that a dedicated police unit will be now pursuing people who are acting in the best interests of women and children.”

Chilling and sickening and enraging.

The Act became law in April 2021 and, despite the legislation receiving Royal Assent, it has not come into force as Police Scotland had said it would require time for “training, guidance and communications planning”. As that exercise nears completion, police chiefs are refusing to confirm how many officers will be attached to the new hate crime unit, or how much has been spent in preparation for the new laws to come into effect.

They say their new Core Operational Solutions (COS) – a suite of new national systems which have been rolled out to replace 44 legacy systems and processes with five national applications – is also going to be deployed to “bring to justice those perpetrators of hate against protected people and groups”.

And those protected people and groups do not include women. Transgender identity is on the list but being a woman is not – so men in dresses will have a field day calling the cops on women who refuse to pretend to believe in their magic idenniny.

Police Scotland recorded 64,807 incidents of domestic abuse in 2021-22 but women were excluded by the Scottish Government from the new hate crime laws.

Women just don’t count. Women are The Servants. Women are in the background, mopping the floor and making dinner; they just don’t matter enough to merit any protections.

Former Scottish Justice Minister Kenny MacAskill said: “Police Scotland are in danger of taking their eye off the ball. All new legislation requires training for officers. But the establishment of a unit when it should be part of the day job gets things out of kilter. The main hate crime has always been and remains misogyny and domestic violence.

Yes but that’s such old news, so much part of the landscape. It’s like wallpaper. It’s not new and exciting like twanzphobeeya.

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