The sheer intolerance of Extinction Rebellion knows no bounds.
On Friday evening, XR took it upon themselves to enforce a blockade on printing presses around the country, severely hampering production and distribution of Britain's best-selling broadsheets. Their purpose? To draw attention to, yes, you guessed it, climate change.
But there was more wrong with these protests than right, given what they were trying to achieve.
“Humanity is at a crossroads. The natural world is under serious threat and the consequences could be apocalyptic.”
These are not words from an Extinction Rebellion statement, nor from an interview of one of their activists. They are the words of Sir David Attenborough, in yesterday's Sun newspaper, which the climate clowns, in their risible contemptibility, managed to censor.
They had unwittingly blocked out one of the most vocal inspirations for their cause. But was that all? Of course not.
By blocking roads, they were making delivery lorries stay put, potentially with engines running, damaging the environment more than they would have done had they been let through to load their cargo. This is without mentioning the vans which they used to assist them in doing so.
But why do this?
The main reason which was publicly reported on, following comment from Extinction Rebellion, was that they wanted the press to report more prominently on climate change and its effects on the world.
XR want to win over popular opinion with a strategy of civil disobedience. But is it any wonder they aren't getting support from the public when everything they do is designed to inhibit not government or authority, but normal people going about their everyday life?
It seems severely misguided.
Indeed, this protest was no break from their palpable, moronic style. On their website, which I would link to back up the quote but I don't want to give them any more attention than they already have, they describe one of the problems as being the “system...contemptuous of humanity and the living world, and held in place by a toxic media (power without truth).”
Not only are they protesting their lack of media coverage, they are at the same time effectively calling the press “toxic”, liars and in contempt of humanity. It's almost no wonder that they don't receive much print media coverage if that is how they want to treat those who would provide it.
You would think they would have a problem with the fact that it's printed on paper, but that wasn't even mentioned.
This extraordinary attack on democracy, through the attempted censorship of the free press, shows that they really are incredibly inept at what they're trying to do. Not only did they manage to stifle one of their biggest advocates, cause unnecessary air pollution, inconvenience and annoy the population they were trying to win over, severely vex the media bosses from whom they want more coverage and completely mis-communicate why they acted how they did; they managed to carry out one of the worst assaults on free society there has ever been.
But that wasn't the end of it. They managed to unite the two main parties in parliament...against them.
Boris Johnson called their actions “completely unacceptable”, whilst Jo Stephens, shadow Secretary of State for Digital Culture, Media and Sport said that “stopping them [newspapers] from being distributed and printers from doing their jobs is wrong”.
As Extinction Rebellion somehow continued to succeed in giving saving the planet a bad name, the British public reacted as only they could – utterly brilliantly. Within hours of the news breaking yesterday morning, #BuyAPaper was trending on Twitter. All newspapers united on social media to condemn the attack on free speech.
Even better, when the newspapers reached the shops, people were even more eager to buy one.
I went to my local newsagent yesterday to buy a Telegraph, the first newspaper I have bought in months, and I only did it because of what Extinction Rebellion did. How ironic?
There is only one way to properly combat these morons. Of course, they have a right to protest and in a free, democratic society we should allow this. But we, the British public, have an equally free environment in which to make our choice of whether to embrace or ignore them, and right now their tactics are designed specifically to inconvenience you, your friends, your family and your life.
Of course climate change is an issue. We all know it. But we do not need these counter-productive halfwits turning people against that.
We are making excellent progress in reforming our way of life, progressing as a society towards embracing substantial, some may argue critical, eco-friendly changes and we need to recognise that. They should support our recent, successive governments' pro-green agenda, and be constructive in influencing and implementing change.
They should not continue to violate the principles of our free, democratic society.
Jack Rydeheard, Editor for Conservative Progress and Freelance Political Commentator and Consultant
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