An unlikely hero

Some people dream of a place to call home, a garden to grow the veg and fruit and a quiet space to relax in with friends and neighbours once they turn eighty-five, but not Norman Scarth.

Looking at the video, it seems no press turned up to hear him speak on his release from prison; the interest just wasn’t there but that’s nothing new.

Norman quotes Paul Henry Thoreau: “In a state which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is in prison.” He doesn’t seem to hold out much hope for us: “33% of the British people are corrupt, 33% are brainwashed and 33% are spineless.” I hope he’s wrong: perhaps he’s just a realist and I’m an optimist.

Get past the tub-thumping song at the beginning – Sigmund Romberg and Oscar Hammerstein had a hand in it and it was sung by Nelson Eddy in a creaky film, but they’re good sentiments for Norman. (R&H also wrote THIS, one of my  creaky favourites.)

Norman’s been branded a cranky old trouble-maker, but I wonder.  It’s against the law for recordings or photographs to be taken in a Court of Law but he recorded proceedings because his “hearing is poor”.  The Court hadn’t given permission and, hey presto! he was in a prison cell before you could say Jack Straw.

Lord Justice Pitchford said Scarth “suffered from a delusional disorder, could be loud and argumentative, and was a conspiracy theorist”. Well, that’s half the people I know fhs.

The Contempt of Court laws need urgent revision. I assume the government will do this at the same time they make provision for Judges’ sentences to be broadcast, live, on tv, with Bruce Forsyth and Tessa Daley announcing the sentence.

‘Joe Public, you have made your case here well. You’ve talked eloquently and with passion and your lawyer has given excellent support. But… is it enough to keep you out of jail? Our judges have conferred and the answer is … … … … … …’

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