On Monday (7 February 2022), Keir Starmer was surrounded by a crowd. He had been attending an anti-COVID-19 vaccination demonstration near Parliament. Starmer is the Labour Party leader. Some protesters shouted “Traitor!” and “Were you protecting Jimmy Savile?” at him. The police said that two people had been arrested. This indicates that the relationship between the public and the political system in Britain has diminished. This also shows that Public confidence in British political figures has declined.
Reasons for Keir Starmer mobbing
Some MPs say the protesters mobbed the Labour leader to protect a sex offender. Speaking in the House of Commons last week, Johnson accused Starmer of failing to prosecute Jimmy Saville. Saville was one of the United Kingdom’s most notorious sex offenders as director of public prosecutions. The controversy comes as Johnson is under pressure to resign in the face of a series of scandals. One of the scandals is alcohol-fuelled parties at his Downing Street office and residence during coronavirus lockdowns.
According to Sky News, in videos of mobbing Sir Keir, protesters shouted “fake opposition”, “traitor”, “disgrace.” They also called, “why aren’t you opposing the government? It’s your job”. They also said, “Why aren’t you standing up for the working-class man?” In the background, there were shouts of “Jimmy Savile” and some accusing the leader of “protecting paedophiles”.
Consequences of Keir Starmer mobbing
According to I News, Keir Starmer mobbing has led to calls from MPs for Johnson to apologise for his words. Johnson had said that Starmer failed to prosecute the infamous sex offender while the Director of Public Prosecutions. Similarly, as it says in Sky News, after the incident, Boris Johnson is facing calls to apologise. He should apologise for his Jimmy Savile remark aimed at the Labour leader.
Following the incident, Downing Street made it clear that the PM would not apologise. A spokesman said that there were misunderstandings about Johnson’s words. According to the Courier, Mr Johnson clarified the remarks but did not apologise for his words. This led to the resignation of Munira Mirza, the director of the Downing Street policy unit.
As it says in the Guardian, Tory MP Rob Largan said it was time to calm the situation. “Words matter. What we say and how we say it echoes out far beyond Parliament. It can have serious real-world consequences. Elected representatives have a responsibility to lower the temperature of the debate, not add fuel to the fire.”
Who was in Keir Starmer mobbing?
According to I News, a former Conservative councillor who edits an anti-lockdown YouTube channel was among the mob of protesters. William Coleshill, an ex-councillor from Bush Hill Park in Enfield, North London, filmed the Labour leader. He was filming as people surrounded Keir Starmer near Parliament. Mr Coleshill is co-editor-in-chief for the anti-lockdown YouTube channel Resistance GB. He has previously confronted Housing Secretary Michael Gove, Labour MP Jess Philips and BBC reporter Nick Watt. He was shouting at Sir Keir: “Why have your party allowed our Magna Carta, our rights, our common law, to be ignored? “Why did you go after Julian Assange? Why did you target a journalist?”
As it says in Aljazeera, the group that posted the video of protesters calls itself “Resistance GB”. It is part of a wider anti-establishment/anti-vaccine/anti-government movement. According to the Courier, “the police arrested a man and a woman for assault of an emergency worker. The assault happened after a protester threw a traffic cone at a police officer. Protesters were seen displaying signs opposing mandatory vaccination and restrictions to prevent Covid-19 deaths. Footage posted to social media showed Piers Corbyn. Piers Corbyn is the Covid-19 conspiracy theorist brother of former Labour leader Jeremy.
Keir Starmer mobbing: a disgraceful act
According to the Guardian, the former chief whip Julian Smith was among at least seven Tory MPs to criticise Johnson. “It is vital for our democracy and his security that the false Savile slurs made against him are withdrawn in full,” he tweeted. Johnson said the behaviour “directed at the leader of the opposition is disgraceful” “All forms of harassment of our elected representatives are completely unacceptable.,” he said.
Keir Starmer mobbing: Canterbury Archbishop’s view
As it says in the Telegraph, Justin Welby condemns the ‘shocking, disturbing and utterly terrible harassing’ of Labour leader in London. Welby is the archbishop of Canterbury. The Archbishop of Canterbury has suggested society is “forgetting God” after a mob surrounded Sir Keir Starmer.
The decline of public confidence in Government
As it says in Reuters, Rishi Sunak had an interview with BB. Rishi Sunak is Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer. The interview was with ‘The Andrew Marr Show, in London, Britain. The interview took place on October 24, 2021. Parties at Johnson’s residence and office during the COVID-19 lockdown has damaged public confidence in the Government, Sunak said. He added, “I can appreciate people’s frustration”. “I think it is now the job of the government to restore people’s trust,” he told the BBC.
Similarly, as it says in Politico, citizens’ trust in the British Government has dropped to the lowest point in decades. The annual British Social Attitudes Survey in 2019 showed that Citizen’s trust in Government has fallen. Only 15 per cent of respondents said they trust the Government either “most of the time or “just about always”. The pollsters described it as the lowest level recorded in more than 40 years.
As the reports by Reuters and Politico show, British people’s confidence in the Government has dramatically dropped. People have got tired of the decisions and actions of the Government. They do not trust the officials. Such dissatisfactions and lack of trust lead to behaviours like Keir Starmer mobbing. As I noted above, Johnson said the behaviour “directed at the opposition leader is disgraceful. The question is: why do people show such behaviour. The answer is clear. People no longer trust the Government and the officials.