NEW ORWELLIAN GOVERNMENT LEGISLATION COULD SCUPPER FUTURE WEIRD WEEKENDS
There has been no fanfare, you won't have seen anything in the news about it. It is being slipped in on the quiet, under the radar, like most liberty eroding atrocities this right wing government is imposing on it's populace.
On page 25 of issue 1236 of Private Eye is a worrying little story.
If it is true, then as of November 2010 all authors (privately published ones included) will be legally required to apply to the Independent Safeguarding Authority (sounds like someting out of '1984'). Any author who gives more than one lecture per year will need to be vetted by the ISA for clearence in case there are children or 'vulnerable adults' in the audience. The check costs a minimum of £64. Anyone allowing an author who has not been checked by the ISA to speak will be commiting a criminal offence.
Can you imagine the effect that will have on conventions like the Weird Weekend, where most speakers are also authors? No-one will want to pay £64 plus just for the pleasure of speaking at a conference.
Apparently the new law has been gestating ever since the Soham murders. Ths cynical, power crased, Neo-Stalinist government are playing on our fears of paedophiles to strip away our civil liberties. In a world so crazed and paranoid (thanks to media frenzy) about child safety, few will stand up to them. The government is sneaking this law in so they can gain more control over the masses and raise more cash from a pointless registration scheme.
A former Children's Laureate told Private Eye "This could put an end to pretty well all festivals, launches, school and libary visits, bookshop signings and lectures. I certainly am not going to apply for a check of this sort in order to stand on a dias in front of 250 children with ten or so members of staff in attendance, to ensure I do not rape any of them."
This threatens us all; we need to make a stand and not allow this attrocity to become law. We need to make a noise about this in any way we can. If anyone has any suggestions or ideas let us know. We can't lie back whilst the government's jackboot grinds our faces into the dust.
Is this Great Britain? Its sounding more like Burma or North Korea every day. Are we going to stand by and let this happen?
To quote the great Alan Moore "People should not be aftraid of their goverments. Govenments should be aftraid of their people."