Gary's News and views

Gary Streeter MP for South West Devon

Gary writes a weekly article which appears in the Plympton Plymstock and Ivybridge News in South West Devon. The articles are published here.


Thursday, 22 May 2014


I am glad that we live in a tolerant country, but:

I am also very glad that we deported Abu Hamza to the USA so that a New York court this week could find him guilty of terrorist related activities. He assisted in the abduction of 15 innocent people in the Yemen many years ago and tried to build a terror camp in the USA. I hope that he receives a very long sentence and serves it out in full.

Similarly, I am also glad that Abu Qatada was finally deported last year by the government to Jordan to face terrorism charges over there. We should be very tough indeed in defending our country and wider world against people who stir up or take part in terrorist activities.

On top of all that, I am equally as glad that the possible extremist infiltration into schools in Birmingham is being robustly investigated. There should be no no-go areas for British justice or our way of life in any part of this country.

It is possible to be tolerant and tough at the same time. We must be tolerant of diversity including racial and religious diversity. Indeed, we should actually welcome it. Some of the tone and content of the language we have heard in recent weeks has been unpleasant bordering on sickening. We do not need to go down that vile path.

British history is full of examples of immigrant groups who have made their home with us and strengthened our nation. Would we have any straight roads but for the Romans? Would we have any decent cuisine but for the Normans? Would we have any decent sports players but for our friends from the Caribbean?

But there are some basic lessons that we simply have to learn. First, no more unsustainable mass immigration as we suffered from 1997 to 2010 from which we have still not caught our breath. Second, people coming here to live should learn the language and assimilate. If you don't want to, don't come. Third, although freedom of religion is crucial, freedom to promote acts of terror must be dealt with by the full force of the law. Zero tolerance for extremism.

If we implement these three simple rules, we should continue to be a tolerant and free nation for the next two millennia, as we have been since Julius Caesar first did his veni, vidi, vici thing all those years ago.

posted by Gary @ 08:57