Walking with the “Progress Pride” banner, a British police department reminded the public that they will be “watching” their social media posts for “hate crimes.”
Essex Police warned Britons against expressing their feelings as they marked Pride Month with a photo of officers raising the Progress Pride flag, which includes transgender colours as well as black and brown stripes to represent LGBTQ+ ethnic minorities, in addition to the traditional rainbow colours.
The force wrote: “We celebrate diversity by raising the Pride Progress flag for Pride Month at our HQ and to honour those who championed equality before us! #WeValueDifference #PoliceinPride.”
Essex Police then warned the public off criticising the virtue signalling effort by adding: “We’re monitoring our posts. All hate crimes will be reported & investigated.”
Citizens in the United Kingdom face criminal charges under subjective categories such as “grossly offensive” or intentionally causing “annoyance, inconvenience, or needless anxiety to another” under Section 127 of the Communications Act 2003, which lacks First Amendment freedom of speech protections.
The measure, which was adopted during former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s left-wing government, has been used to imprison thousands of Britons for online content.
Despite being in power for more than a decade, the so-called Conservative Party has not only failed to repeal the harsh policing powers used to suppress free speech, but has instead pushed even more internet restrictions.
Under Boris Johnson’s government’s proposed Online Safety Bill, social media corporations may face enormous fines of up to 10% of their global sales if they fail to control “harmful information” online.
Thousands more people have had their online posts logged by police forces around the country in a database for “non-crime hate incidents,” which, while not a crime, might still show up on a criminal history check conducted by potential employers.
Liverpool Police, for example, created a cringeworthy film encouraging “pronoun awareness” in which police underlined the necessity of using “gender-neutral terminology” and “promote inclusivity by opposing negativity in all its manifestations.”