What on earth has happened to Matthew Parris?
For the last thirty years or so he has produced beautifully written, persuasive columns on subjects from llamas to high politics, typically characterised by thoughtfulness, tolerance and moderation. Then, last Saturday he wrote an extraordinary piece under the headline “We should stop pandering to Travellers.”
It seems to have been prompted by the arrival of some travellers in a Matlock car park:
“… I’ve walked through the encampment many times a week for ages now. A scattering of Portaloos and wheelie-bins have arrived, more caravans recently, dogs on chains, and a string of steel barricades: the town is facing a serious loss of amenity and people worry — reasonably or otherwise — about security.”
Mr Parris concedes that the Travellers have done neither him, nor anyone he knows any harm. Nevertheless, “public anger is undeniable.”
His central argument was that “there is simply no place for the nomad [that is travellers and gypsies moving around the countryside in caravans] – in modern Britain.” Continue reading “The Evil of Priti Patel’s Anti-Gypsy Legislation”