Via Edwin Greenwood, we find this extraordinary story, which I’m surprised has not yet been picked up by the ‘Daily Mail’:
Officers arrested the 36-year-old at home two days later and locked him in the cells at Chesterfield for four hours before charging him with contravening race relation laws.The ‘offensive’ ringtone? A sound clip from a film soundtrack.
Angry warehouseman Martin hit out after magistrates fined him £191 with £85 costs for using racially aggravated threatening or insulting words or behaviour.
Not a verboten film either:
"If Channel 4 can put Rita, Sue and Bob Too! on TV all the time, as it does, then why can't I play a clip from the soundtrack on my phone?A very good question, Martin. A very good question indeed.
"If it's good enough for prime time Tv then it ought to be good enough for me and my mobile."
Mind you, the police might be a little wary about marching into Channel 4 HQ after their last debacle…
The reaction of even his defenders says a lot, though:
Jon Barber, defending, said his client denied making a racist remark in front of the complainant, but accepted the woman may have been offended by the ringtone.And that lesson being? That the law’s an ass?
"He thought it was amusing – but it's a lesson learned."
Shopkeeper Geoff Wallage said the woman had made no complaint to his staff at the time.And if she had? What business is it of a shopkeeper if a customer has a ringtone that someone else doesn’t care for?
"I feel very sorry for Martin, he's a really decent bloke with a great sense of humour and he didn't deserve all this trouble. I feel that it's been a complete waste of public money.NO. THEY. SHOULDN’T.
They should have told Martin to swap his ringtone and left it at that, instead of dragging him to court."
What they should have done, and what would happen in any normal world, rather than the one that the racial grievance industry has dragged us to, was to point out to the affronted troublemaker the wise words of Stephen Fry…
Still, if Derbyshire residents don’t care for this use of their police force, they can always have their say:
People in Derbyshire are being asked for their views on Government plans to scrap police authorities and replace them with elected commissioners.Heh! That might just backfire. I really, really hope it does…
Derbyshire's Police Authority chairman, city councillor Philip Hickson, is concerned about the plans.
As reported in the Derby Telegraph on Monday, he says the proposals could cost Derbyshire police more than £750,000 in election fees and would offer the public "nothing".
Derbyshire Police Authority has already written to the Home Office and the Association of Police Authorities.And if the answer is ‘Yes, we want them!’, with an overwhelming majority?
It is now asking the public whether they would vote in such an election.
Responses will help the authority prepare its final response to the Home Office.