Jo Bartosch records the efforts of the West Yorkshire Police to enforce ideological conformity on the British public, while they fail women again and again.
Poor West Yorkshire Police just can’t get it right, no matter how many times they tweet pictures of training courses run by Mermaids, or show their solidarity with trans people, they just keep putting their big plod boots in it.
In a week when two women in the Holbeck ‘managed red light district’ of Leeds were robbed by a man at knife point, David Harland, an Inspector at West Yorkshire Police decided that the group most in need of support are trans people. Along with 72 other prominent gay men, Inspector Harland signed a letter drafted by millionaire businessman Anthony Watson, which opined “The most vulnerable people in our society are marginalised, scared and endangered. Trans communities, and in particular trans children, are under attack on a daily basis.” (As an aside, no evidence of these daily ‘attacks’ was offered, someone really ought to investigate). Inspector Harland, who also happens to be a ‘Stonewall LGBT Role Mode’ then tweeted:
I pledge in my role of a Police Officer to continue raising awareness of Transphobia, doing all I can for the #Trans Community.
Responses asking whether he would pledge to stand in support of women survivors of sexual violence were ignored by Inspector Harland.
Given the current tensions between feminists campaigning for the rights of women to be upheld, and Stonewall who have actively lobbied for the removal of sex-based protections, a more politically savvy copper might have read the room on this one and kept schtum. This is of course not an isolated incident for West Yorkshire Police, who have more than won their misogynist stripes through decades of minimising and ignoring the abuse of women and girls.
When West Yorkshire’s finest aren’t pursuing people across the country for wrong-think on gender identity they’re advising girls who go to parties that ‘the price’ they pay ‘could be rape.’ The force have a long history of failing to protect women and children from predators; looking back on his time in the force, one ex-copper commented in an interview for The Telegraph “there wasn’t a copper in the city who didn’t know Savile was a pervert.”
After the body of Anneli Alderton, the third victim of Steve Wright was discovered, the police advised women “stay off the streets. If you are out alone at night, you are putting yourself in danger.” Forty-two years on and through scandals over grooming, paedophile rings and the police announcing the success of a ‘managed red-light area’ despite the murder of a prostituted woman, nothing much seems to have changed.
There are some women that West Yorkshire Police do seem to care about, and those are women with penises. Transwomen like Inspector Harlard’s fellow Stonewall Role Model Alex Drummond who sports a full beard and has a declared an ambition to “expand the bandwidth of ‘woman.’” It is worth remembering that transwomen in the UK are more likely to commit murder than to be victims of it, though that truth will garner fewer Guardianista ‘likes’ on social media.
Comments made by senior officers like Inspector Harland betray a shocking insouciance for the concerns of women and girls, an estimated twenty percent of whom will have suffered male violence. Given such a callous disregard for victims, is it any surprise that abusive men like those in West Yorkshire are free to get away with it?