Listen to the ugly gent!
@ 2011-08-30 – 11:57:35
@ 2011-08-10 – 18:17:16
I thought in the context of what is happening at the moment it would be a good time to talk about how they dealt with such actions under the Bloody Code.
Have you ever wondered where the expression “reading the riot act” comes from? Well back in the 18th Century there was a Riot Act. This particular piece of legislation dealt with the problem of how to disperse an unruly mob.
This got even more important to the upper classes with events in America and France. Particularly the latter as it was an actual popular revolt rather than the machinations of several upper class- slave owning- landlords.
The Riot Act is somewhat uniquely British. No other country that I’m aware of approached the problem in quite the same way.
Upon the situation getting out of control a local official, usually a Magistrate would read this part of the text of the Act to the crowd.
“Our Sovereign Lord the King chargeth and commandeth all persons, being assembled, immediately to disperse themselves, and peaceably to depart to their habitations, or to their lawful business, upon the pains contained in the act made in the first year of King George, for preventing tumults and riotous assemblies. God Save the King!”
If the crowd failed to abide by said proclamation within the said time ANYONE was immune from prosecution in any action taken to contain the riot.
Now do I think this is a good way of dealing with riots? Fuck no! Especially not when said riots were triggered by allegations of excessive Police violence. However I do admire the old Riot Act for how incredibly civilized and British it is in giving rioter’s fair warning.
That it grants anyone taking on rioters who have ignored the warning carte blanche to do as they please is appalling but that’s just typical of Georgian Britain. If you don’t play the game they kill you!
Mind you a bayonet up the arse may well be preferable to having to face horrors like this...
@ 2011-08-03 – 11:50:43
Episode 1: Tough Justice