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Fathers 4 Justice in…Nottingham?

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Yeah, I know – after London, there’re a number of cities here in England that’d have got them a little more attention than here in humble ol’ nottingham (the home of Robin Hood, a long long time ago, possibly, although perhaps not depending on which researchers and historians you ask)
But there I was, walking down from the front of the Victoria Centre shopping centre, at ooh about 7.40am. As I was walking past the back of the old…council building of some kind (town hall? I just realised I’m not entriely sure what it used to be. It’s the one with the lions in front) I noticed a police van parked on the street. Now, that’s not exactly a rare or even surprising sight round here, at least, not on a thursday or friday or saturday night. Or tuesday. But a monday morning? I put it from my mind as I turned and walked down the side of the building, towards the stop I needed to get my bus at. But then! I hear shouting. As i reach the front of the building, I can see a short distance in front has been cordoned off. Woah, a jumper. I’ve never in my life heard of anyone even make like they’re gonna jump off the roof of that building, and lo and behold, when I’m far anough away to see up there proper, what do I see but a banner and two guys; one dressed as spiderman, the other as batman (maybe they’re realising robin is kinda gay huh?)
Anyways, these two protesters must really feel strongly about their cause. They were up there the whole time I waited for my bus (it left around 8.10am, that’s a good half hour at least). It was quite cold again today, too, and they didn’t exactly look like they were wearing thermals.
More fool me for having forgot to pack my camera in my bag this morning thanks to the usual rush. I have made a solemn vow to myself that from now on, I’ll pack it the night before, so as not to forget it. This is the fourth or fifth good photo opp I’ve missed in just a few weeks. If I’d had my camera each time, I’d probably have my own news show by now…
If you don’t already know what Fathers 4 Justice is all about, you could check out their web site, if you missed the controversy they caused when they first began pulling these kinda stunts.
The bottom line is, in general, the UK justice system is stacked quite badly against fathers when it comes to dealing with parenthood, i.e. in divorces, etc. These particular guys feel they have no other options left, although I noticed tonight on TV there was something about how some violent fathers have “infiltrated” the movement, so maybe they oughta keep a check on these guys.

This post first appeared at my blog.

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About jadester48

  • Sooner or later one of these guys is going to get himself killed.

    Anyone’s guess as to whether the first fatality will fall off a crane or building, or will get mistaken for a terrorist and shot.

  • funnily enough, it did give me the heebie-jeebies at the point when i looked back up, whilst waiting for the bus, and noticed a number of policemen on the roof with not a sign of the protesters. However, about half the front and one side weren’t visible to me at that point, and after a minute of the policemen seemingly just looking around the main roof bit, they withdrew and the two protesters re-appeared, on the smaller front section of roof that sticks out from the main building, supported by pillars. There’s nothing there that’d stop them falling if they had have slipped. That’d have been it, father pizza on the street below.
    But, I have never been in a situation even close to what the average member of this organisation is in. I have a suspicion, if I really felt I were let down badly by our country’s laws, I might feel strongly enough to do something stupidly dangerous like this.
    The one thing i found wierd was i saw mention of three protesters. I never spotted a third, though i suppose he could easily have been hidden in the central tower bit, the one who kept setting off an air-raid siren (a nice extra touch to gain attention, i thought).
    it was certainly timed well, it would have caught much of the morning rush hour of people going to work in and around the city centre. And i seriously doubt that building had much, if any, security, beyond a locked door or two, between the ground and the roof, so i suppose the target makes more sense when you look at it like that; they already got a couple of real high-profile buildings. Now they just need ones to retain the public’s attention in their cause.