Je suis Hilary

Foreign Shadow Secretary, Hilary Benn and a coterie within the Labour Party voted with the government for air-strikes on Syria. To do so they blackmailed their leader into giving them a free vote. Plumping for conscience outside parliament is not so easy. There is no right to freedom of thought and conscience in the British workplace. An application to the European Court of Human Rights to remedy this violation – and breach of the UK’s treaty obligations –  dead ends this month. Continue reading

Points of awe

The common law in England is the accumulated wisdom of the judiciary distilled in decisions and preserved in law reports. I think there is something quite magical about depending on a judgment handed down in the 18th century. But now I will never know whether a breach of the peace in Hampstead,  London – settled in the House of Lords on 28 November 1893 – may have helped in a quest for freedom of thought and conscience in the United Kingdom today. Continue reading