Sunday, October 29, 2006

Firework Terrorism and Hibs beating Hearts!!!!

We have had lots of problems in Camberwell with youth gangs using fireworks as weapons and we have a 3 week period when local people are terrorised by them.

Local shops are illegally selling fireworks and we caught a shop red handed and are are now prosecuting but i do wonder if it is now time to legislate against the public sale of fireworks outside of organised events? It sounds extreme but these large fireworks are being used as weapons in the inner city and whilst I am sure that the current Private members Bill will fail, I hope that time is running out for the public sale of fireworks!

Hibs meanwhile created some fireworks of their own kicking Hearts out of the Scottish League Cup. With Rangers and Celtic out as well I may well have an appointment to keep at Hampden Park early in 2007!!!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Leadership, the veil and beating France!

I was not able to see much of the Labour Party Conference but do hope that we can move to a new leader in a way that does not cause long term harm to our electoral chances. I am supporting Gordon Brown for Leader with my own MP Harriet Harman as Deputy Leader and look forward to them leading the Labour Party to a historic Fourth Term.

I am interested in the debate on the wearing of the veil by Muslim women sparked by comments from Jack Straw. My view is that it is a matter of choice and I would never ask a Muslim women to remove the veil. However I am not convinced that it is always a matter of choice and am reminded of my flight back from Tehran a couple of years ago when every women removed the veil as soon as they took their seat and it doesw make me wonder?

What concerns me more is the hostile response from some Muslim leaders to any discussion, be it from Jack Straw or the Pope as I beleieve that the future of multiculturalism relies on tolerance on all sides. I have Muslim friends and work with many Muslims and am clear that most do not share the radical views expressed by some on the national media.

The Lib Dem/Tory Council has really get itself into a tangle with the privatisation of the internal building workers. they put the decsion off for a week, met at lunchtime to avoid a demo, and put it of again! Clearly tensions between the Tories and Lib Dems are already coming to the surface!

Finally Scotland pulled of a historic 1-0 victory again World Cup Finalists France yesterday and have a maximum 9 points from 3 games and are top of the group.
A difficult away game against Ukraine in Kiev awaits on Wednesday but we are beginning to think the impossible, that Scotland could actually qualify from the toughest Group in the Euro Championships Qualifiers!!! COME ON SCOTLAND!!!!!!