Such is the pronouncement of our Home Secretary, that darling bud of Theresa May. Not only do some police forces have few black officers, but – are you ready for this? – they may also be short of female officers as well.
And that’s not all. Women, as she announced with horror dripping off every sound, make up 51 per cent of the population but only 28 per cent of the police force!!! Wait a second, let me recover from the shock… fine, I’m a bit better now.
Mrs May also enlarged my vocabulary, which at present is shamefully short of acronyms. One missing acronym was BME (black and minority ethnic), and Mrs May helpfully filled the gap.
“There are only two BME chief officers in England and Wales, and 11 forces have no BME officers above chief inspector rank,” she lamented. “That is simply not good enough.”
This intolerable situation violates the historic principle of ‘policing by consent’, according to our Home Secretary. “We must ensure that the public have trust and confidence in the police, and that the police reflect the communities they serve.”
And there I was, thinking that the police should not so much reflect their communities as protect them. Sorry, ma’am, my mistake. It’s all society’s fault.
Robert Peel, who created the modern police force, never realised what kind of Pandora box he opened. He didn’t anticipate the predicament the occupier of the same office would have 165 years after his death.
Let’s say a neighbourhood is blessed with many alms houses, or whatever such establishments are called these days. There’s no way the locals could possibly have ‘trust and confidence’ in their bobbies unless they too are octogenarians.
Public services must reflect the demographic makeup of the public with actuarial precision, that’s all there is to it. If they don’t, if, to use Mrs May’s example, 51 female per cent of mankind (personkind?) are policed by a force that’s merely 28 per cent women, lawlessness will descend.
How can a woman possibly trust a male officer to save her from a rapist? Or, if the prospective victim is black and the PC isn’t only a man but also white – why, she’d have so little trust in the cop that she might as well relax and enjoy.
Looking at our steeply rising crime statistics, one could be forgiven for thinking that perhaps we have a shortage of police officers, full stop, never mind their race or sex.
Another forgivable thought would be that exactly the same perverse culture that demands demographic rectitude is also responsible for not letting the few policemen we still have do their job properly.
You see, blacks, to name one underrepresented community, make up a mere three per cent of Britain’s population. That means that policemen can be allowed to stop and search exactly that proportion of suspects, no higher – or else risk censure for racism.
They might defend themselves by saying that the proportion of young black men in the prison population is 10 per cent, not three, and this is a more relevant statistic to go by. But Mrs May won’t accept that argument – policing by consent means policing by demographics. That’ll be all, officer.
May I go out on a limb and suggest that, if I lived in a particularly violent area, I wouldn’t want 51 per cent of the cops to be women? The reason for this antediluvian prejudice isn’t ideological but physiological: age and training being equal, women aren’t as strong and fast as men are.
Since cops of either sex aren’t allowed to carry guns, I’d prefer a large man protecting me, rather than a small woman. Call me a reactionary fossil, but I can’t help thinking that a wisp of an unarmed girl wouldn’t stand much of a chance against a young buck with a handful of GBH priors to his name.
Proving that I’m even more retrograde than that, I’d go so far as to say that my ideal of femininity doesn’t necessarily include the ability to bark ‘You’re nicked, sunshine!’ with convincing menace. I thought I’d say this before such an attitude becomes grounds for a mandatory custodial sentence.
In any case, protecting the public isn’t what our police are any longer for, at least not exclusively. They are there to assuage Mrs May’s social conscience. To her, as to our whole deliberately subversive establishment, PC should stand for political correctness, not police constable.
They themselves don’t have to rely on bobbies on the beat to protect them from muggers, and that’s all that really matters to that lot. The rest of us are there to be brainwashed, socially engineered – and defenceless.
Never mind policing by consent, I’d suggest. Bring back government by consent – kick the darling bud out and let her take her ideas on a lucrative lecture tour. She’ll find plenty of suck…, sorry, I mean takers.