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May 19, 2004
The Commons Takes A Powder

The London Telegraph has a disturbing story in this morning's breaking news about a protest in the House of Commons which culminated in a stupid and frightening attack on Tony Blair:

The House of Commons has been suspended after protesters threw missiles containing purple powder at Tony Blair during Prime Minister's question time. Mr Blair was hit on the back by the powder which spread a cloud of dust over MPs on the Labour benches.

The Prime Minister continued to answer a question from Michael Howard, the Tory leader, before the session was suspended by Speaker Michael Martin.

The protest was staged by two men who were sitting in an area of the public gallery normally reserved for distinguished guests. They were dragged from the gallery by security staff as MPs began to leave the chamber.

That's all of the information known at this point. British leftists seem to have as little sense about life in general and the war on terror specifically as their American counterparts, and security for the House of Commons needs an upgrade, to say the least. By this point, whenever Americans hear "powder", our minds immediately race towards anthrax or chemical weapons attacks, whether the powder be purple, saffron, or rainbow-hued. For protestors to use powder in an attack either shows an idiotic understanding of previous attacks, or a monstrous calculation designed to induce panic.

And look where these protestors decided to stage their attack -- in the heart of British democracy, where open debate on issues of the day have taken place for centuries. I rather doubt that the venue was selected by coincidence or mere tactical ease. I suspect that the protestors meant to close off debate in the Commons, shutting down Parliament in order to make a big splash on TV. Remember this when the radical leftists claim that they just want to exercise their right to free speech; they would gladly deny that right to anyone who doesn't agree with their agenda, and shutting down the Commons simply is the most efficient method.

UPDATE: Geez, it's even stupider than I thought:

A fathers' rights pressure group claimed responsibility for the incident, which happened around 11:20 a.m. GMT as the chamber was full for the weekly prime minister's questions session. Two men were arrested.

"Fathers-4-Justice," which campaigns for equal rights of access to children for divorced fathers, said the stunt was one of a series of protests it planned in the run-up to Father's Day on June 20. Purple powder is the international color for equality, a spokesman said.

"Tony Blair should appreciate what it would be like without children because he himself is a father," he added.

Morons. Hopefully they'll never have to find out what it would be like to suffer a powderized anthrax attack.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at May 19, 2004 6:57 AM

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