Good Riddance to Recorded ‘Hate Incidents’ | National Review

Good Riddance to Recorded ‘Hate Incidents’ | National Review

Today, the U.K. Court of Appeals decided to get rid of the police practice of recording non-crime “hate incidents” which, the judges determined, constitute an unlawful interference with freedom of expression.

The legal challenge was brought by Harry Miller, a former police officer, who was visited by police in January 2020 after writing tweets that criticized and mocked transgenderism. Miller soon discovered that this interaction was stored on a national database of “non-crime incidents.” The College of Policing defines a hate incident as “any non-crime incident which is perceived, by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by a hostility or prejudice.”

In her judgment, Dame Victoria Sharp, one of England’s most senior judges warned of the “chilling effect of perception-based recording.” This is the crucial point. This is all subjective. Nobody wants their speech to be monitored and registered by the police. If political speech is to be recorded in this way, the inevitable result will be self-censorship.

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About the Author

Tony Beasley
Tony Beasley writes for the Local News, US and the World Section of ANH.