Hi to all you Scousers from a Dagenham and Redbridge
fan - very much in peace.
Although the outcomes of the inquests have been likely known for some time, especially as revelations have slipped out into the public domain over time with 'inconsistencies' in the police's stories. Following Tuesday's announcement, I thought it is now about the right time for me to find you to say this:
I'm here to apologise. Please understand - I come from the other end of the country. I wasn't anywhere near Sheffield on the day this happened - I saw what happened coming in on Grandstand that Saturday afternoon.... So what am I sorry for, exactly - this was nothing at all to do with me at all, was it? I was 26 years old that spring day. My then girlfriend was heavily pregnant and I would soon become a dad. I think we'd been out around the shops buying things for the baby....
Quite simply I am so very, very sorry for doing something my mum taught me as a child; namely to quietly trust and accept the police's story about what had happened. I regret to admit that for perhaps 15 years to two decades or so until the whole thing was reviewed and then revelations started leaching out, I had, without putting much thought into it, basically unquestionningly accepted what the media had published and broadcast about what had happened that day in Sheffield on the part of the police.
As things have leached out though, I have felt more and more uncomfortable with myself for simply following the rules laid down to me in my own upbringing - to not question the statements or motives of the police....
The more that has come out though the more uncomfortable I have felt in myself for simply trusting the police
. I didn't "jump to conclusions" like others, I just didn't question what was said because as I have said on our own forum here http://www.viewsfromthesieve.co.uk/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1948
why would any reasonable, rational adult want to question anything that the police might say They don't lie, do they?
The way I feel about myself brought about from the lies from the police are insignificant to the losses of the bereft families; but we are all people and all citizens of the same country. I know I cannot be the only person elsewhere in the country who just accepted the police's view on events but the rest of us haven't lost members of our families and it wasn't perhaps as important to us as it was to you.
What more can or should I say? My mum meant well when she brought me up by instilling that I should always trust a policeman. How should I feel about myself when one of the binding cornerstones of my own values is laid bare like this as just a grubby pack of lies and half-truths. Is this for real?
So - As for justice for the 96: This won't happen until those men who covered their own arses by abusing the trust of the population at large are brought before the courts, tried and punished for the damage they've caused. Please don't give up and let them get away with a smacked hand or paltry fine. Justice to my mind means a very long period in prison and stripped of all pension rights. The whole thing has just been a total lie to cover their own arses
Trust a policeman now? My friends, if a policeman were to roll up here and tell me it were raining, I would feel compelled to open the window and stick my hand outseide to see if it were getting wet. But society DOES need the general public to trust the police for rapes, break-ins, lost children, murders, etc, etc, etc. Who do we (and I mean all of us in the country) trust in future?
That's about it. That's all I wanted to get off my chest here. To apologise for my misplaced unquestioning trust elsewhere and to belatedly offer my heartfelt sympathies to the families of those who lost their lives and to the city and people of Liverpool. You should never have been left to walk and face this alone
So very sincerely,Paul from Barking - Dagenham & Redbridge