Random rules – update

Someone has alerted me to Lynne Featherstone’s blog on the new proposal to bring in anonymity for defendants in rape trials. It’s a very poor justification, which might suggest she wasn’t entirely behind the proposal, except, according to one of the comments, it’s not something that’s been foisted on the Lib Dems by their partners in crime coalition, but is actually Lib Dem policy:

“Oh, and for those moaning about the Lib dems supposedly doing the Conservatives dirty work – THIS IS A LIB DEM POLICY NOT A CONSERVATIVE ONE! – it was agreed at their conference! That’s exactly what I’d expect form a party genuinely committed to civil liberties, though the fact the Conservatives have given their support to the proposal means they should be commended too.”

I could embark on a rather lengthy discussion here on how one person’s civil liberties is another person’s freedom to get away with doing something unpleasant (ref. previous discussions on freedom of speech -v- incitement to religious hatred laws), and how individual civil liberties, though important, are not the be all and end all in a civilised society.

But let’s stick to topic for the time being – can any Lib Dem who was at the conference where this was discussed point me to a link? Or explain what the boundaries of the proposal are? Just rape? Sexual harrassment? Child abuse?

PS There’s now also a post on Lib Dem Voice, which confirms this was passed at the 2006 Lib Dem conference but expresses surprise it’s been resurrected now. Any chance we could find out who raised this issue during the course of the backroom deals coalition talks?

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  • Renarde  On May 26, 2010 at 9:51 am

    Hi Kerry,

    Thanks for the reference to my article. I still am none the wiser about how this idea came to be exhumed – if you find out, I’d be grateful for the info.

    Karen Kruzycka

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