The Lunatic Fringe

Shortly after I advertised the pamphlet Satpal Ram: GUILTY OF MURDER IN THE FIRST DEGREE in the newsgroup, the following posting appeared in reply:

Having met the family and sat through the last appeal, I can tell
you the above account is bollocks. The facts ADMITTED BY THE
PROSECUTION are that Satpal Ram was sitting with his girlfriend.
A group of white lads, and their womenfolk, started making
remarks about “turn down that Pakki music”. They became so
obnoxious that he eventually said the something along the lines
of “could you just keep it down, I want to eat my meal in peace.”

They then turned on him, smashing tumblers and throwing the
broken pieces at him. Finally one of them rushed at Mr Ram
brandishing a knife -- the prosecution do not dispute it was
the attackers knife. Mr Ram, the smaller of the two, was slammed
to the wall but his hand was trying (and managed) to tear the
knife handle from him. Flailing around he swung his hand INWARD
onto the back of the man holding him and stabbed into his back.
Any sharp knife once though the skin will keep going unless
and until blocked by bone. However, the attacker need not have
died: drunk and obnoxious, he physically rejected treatment
in casualty. And I emphasise I SAT THROUGH SEVERAL HOURS


The poster of this piece of lunacy was one Dave Bird. I was shortly to learn, much to my surprise, that he is active in the anti-censorship movement, and that we move in similar circles. I was informed that he has a bee in his bonnet about Scientology, but that apart from that his views are generally sound.

That may be the case, but if Mr Bird really did sit through Ram’s second appeal one is entitled to ask if said courtroom was on planet Earth. Even Ram’s most vociferous supporters don’t claim that Clarke Pearce was stabbed with his own knife. Not yet, anyway, although I have no doubt that a couple of years from now there will be some people who claim that Ram wasn’t even in the restaurant and that the victim actually committed suicide.
The frightening thing about the nonsense espoused by the likes of Dave Bird is that somebody reading about this case on the other side of the world may actually give it credence. After all, how is someone in Australia or New Zealand to know that British justice isn’t that bizarre in view of the Birmingham Six, Guildford Four, and similar cases involving serial perjury by police officers and massive prosecution conspiracies?

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