Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Jonathan Yardley: Better Comedian Than Sir David Jason...

...but it didn’t stop him getting into trouble all the same:
It started with a presentation with members of the audience given a handset to allow them to select answers to questions flashed up on a screen.

A police authority worker who was acting as presenter then told them: "Let's start with an easy question to get us going: Press A if you're male or B if you're female."

One member of the audience in Wolverhamtpon responded by asking: "What if you're transgendered?"

Mr Yardley, a quantity surveyor, who is married with a 13 year old daughter, said: "I quipped that you could press A and B together. There was much laughter."
Bet you can guess what happened next....
Unbeknown to him there was a man dressed as a woman in the audience whose male partner had raised the question.
In other words, a member of the professionally-aggrieved just looking for an excuse. After all, there’s no reason for asking that question in the first place, is there? If they believe they are born into the wrong sex, they’ll be only too happy to vote as one of the distaff side.

This wasn’t a genuine question – this was a ‘Look at me! Look at ME! Pay attention to me!’ from the person eager to prove his credentials as one of the caring people.
Mr Yardley, Wolverhampton city council's cabinet member for neighbourhoods and safer communities, said: "Several days later a complaint of homophobia was made. I was asked to go to the local police station, questioned for two hours by a sergeant and an inspector and let off with a warning.
‘Homophobia’...? Who’s equalling transgender issues with homosexuality?

Are our oh-so-politically-correct plod not aware that they aren’t the same thing? Back to the diversity vats you go, plod!
"I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. They explained the legal process and what had happened and how the complaint had been made and they said I could be subject to a civil prosecution.

"There are much more important issues that the police should be spending their time on. I have so much treouble with crime and anti-social behaviour in my ward. I'm not homophobic, I just said it as a joke. It's a sign of the times we live in, you can't make jokes any more."
Nope, you can’t. You just have to sit there quietly in your home, not smoking, drinking or eating red meat, not reading, watching only the news, and saying absolutely nothing to anyone else. At all. Ever.

That’ll keep you out of trouble in NuLab’s NuBritain. Well, as long as you have energy-efficient lightbulbs...

The WMP are fielding a crack team of PR flacks to make this latest embarrassment go away:
West Midlands Police have "strongly refuted" the version of events described by Mr Yardley during and after the meeting last October.

It disagreed with his assertion that the remark about transsexual people was met with general amusement, claiming it actually caused offence to members of the audience and provoked a complaint to the force.
We know it caused ‘offence’ to one member of the audience. Where’s your proof that people didn’t laugh as the man claimed...?
Chief Superintendent Richard Green, head of police in Wolverhampton West said:"The local sergeant had held meetings with the councillor before and after the one referred to. One of the many issues that were informally discussed included the matter he now refers to.

"At the time he thanked the officers for discussing the matter with him and the appropriate and proportionate way that they dealt with the matter. We are at a loss to understand why this has been raised now almost six months after the event.
So what..? Is there a statute of limitations on feeling aggrieved? If little Mr ‘Am I Arthur or Martha?’ had come to you with their complaint, would you have told them ‘Ooh, no, sorry, that was over six months ago, we can’t do anything about it now’?

I don’t think so....
"West Midlands Police would not wish the public to be left with the impression that this matter occupied a large amount of police time, as the contrary is true.

We spend our time successfully tackling crime, anti-social behaviour and arresting criminals, as the public quite rightly expects us to."
Mmmm, if you say so.

Because it seems to me you spend a hell of a lot of your time chasing down thought crime, ensuring the laws of free speech in this country work in favour of only one group, harassing journalists telling the truth about mosques and actively assisting criminals.

So I think 'the public' have your number, don't they? And it isn't '999'. Though if you were to turn it upside down...

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

I was going to say it isn't the officers fault as they are following diversity guidleines as provided and drawn up by Stonewall et al. But then I thought, bollocks, if they are doing that particular role they are probably part of the problem and support all this nonsense. If they had any integrity they'd get a REAL policing job or leave the force and become bloody social or outreach workers. Complete nonsense. Most transgenered I see, male to female in any case look like those blikes in frocks advertising paper towels!

Rob said...

How could anyone take offence at his joke? How could it cause 'general offence'? Was this a conference of lemon suckers?

The public sector appears to be full of twats like this. That's the other advantage of a huge cull in public spending - not only will we save a heap of taxpayer cash, but we'll kick these bastards out on the dole as well.

JuliaM said...

"Was this a conference of lemon suckers?"

Not sure. But I bet it rhymes with 'lemon suckers'... ;)

Hogday said...

As a former plod of supervisory rank, I would have told the complainant that although acknowledging someone felt offended, that this was a subjective issue which, in my judgement, did not warrant any more investigation than the time I was taking to say so. I'd advise him to seek civil redress and sue for something. There are several ways of saying, `Why don't you cluck off`. The criminal law is clogged up enough without crud like this.

Anonymous said...

Hogday, common sense indeed (and I also speak as a former plod of supervisory rank), but modern police supervisors have also had their discretion removed the same way front line officers have. That said, there are very many, very ambitious supervisors chasing the next pip/or crown who will use tosh like this as examples to support their diversity driven national competency framework applications. They are willing participants in this madness.

North Northwester said...

"Female impersonator": bad.

Impersonating a police officer: good.

Sorted.

Clarissa said...

Personally I'd have laughed at the comeback as well. Though I wouldn't have even asked the question as I know which button I'd have pressed. But then again I didn't check my sense of humour at the door when I came out.

Unfortunately the T-community (I use the word in the loosest sense) does (like many other groupings) have a subset who like to complain about every perceived slight. I keep ignoring them in the hope that they'll quietly wither away but reactions such as that of plod in this case don't help matters.

Mark Wadsworth said...

Nah.

Mr Yardley should have taken inspiration from Leslie Nielsen in 'Airplane - The Movie' and replied "In that case you press button C".

Umbongo said...

Unfortunately the WMP's Gender Equality Scheme only deals with "women and men". I guess the transgendered individual offended by Councillor Yardley is not offended by this obvious example of transgenderphobia. Or have Wolverhamptons finest told him/her to f**k off?

BTW, as far as I can see, the new and improved WMP site has apparently removed from the site details of the senior dildos running the force (sorry, service). Modesty or shame, I wonder?

JuliaM said...

"I keep ignoring them in the hope that they'll quietly wither away but reactions such as that of plod in this case don't help matters."

Indeed. You don't build a tolerant society by emphasising people's differences, you do it by emphasising their common desires - to live, love and go about their business in peace.

"as far as I can see, the new and improved WMP site has apparently removed from the site details of the senior dildos running the force (sorry, service). Modesty or shame, I wonder?"

Openness and transparency in our public service - we don't haz it!

Rob said...

One of the reasons why this crap happens constantly is because the Police are not even remotely accountable to the public. They are, however, under enormous pressure from those counter-culture groups which now infest our political landscape. They are highly organised lobbyists who can concentrate an extremely effective and powerful fire on any individual who steps out of line (i.e. who doesn't push their agenda).

If the highest levels of the Police were elected by the public, they would have to change their priorities or be out of a job.

staybryte said...

I know this isn't directly related to the topic, but I have to say it somewhere.

The killers of Kevin Tripp have been sentenced to four years and eighteen months respectively.

With remand and remission Virasami will be out in a year.

*Fume*

Edwin Greenwood said...

"Not sure. But I bet it rhymes with 'lemon suckers'... ;)"

Is that a fellatious reference, perchance, Julia?

Sorry, but I've been dying for a chance to use that word since its recent deployment by the exceellent Inspector Gadget. I had not expected an opportunity to arise quite so soon.

JuliaM said...

"The killers of Kevin Tripp have been sentenced to four years and eighteen months respectively."

I know, utterly appalling. I've scheduled a post for tomorrow on it...

"Is that a fellatious reference, perchance, Julia?

Sorry, but I've been dying for a chance to use that word since its recent deployment by the exceellent Inspector Gadget."


Lol! Good one ;)