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Childless Adults In Park To Be Interrogated

samzenpus posted more than 5 years ago | from the think-of-the-children dept.

Idle 15

Every time I start feeling bad about crazy overreaching laws here in the US, the UK does something that makes me even sadder. Park wardens at the Telford Town Park in Shropshire, have been ordered to stop and interrogate anyone who is not accompanied by children. Visitors who can't explain their childless presence in the park risk being thrown out or reported to police. Former childcare social worker John Evans said: "It is authoritarian madness which can only be based on ignorance. It is absurd, it is insulting and it is dangerous as it panics people about the dangers their children face." I envision a new black market rent-a-kid service designed for an unmolested park experience.

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15 comments

WTF (1)

Timothy Brownawell (627747) | more than 5 years ago | (#24950947)

The policy came to light after two environmental campaigners dressed as penguins were thrown out of the park last month when caught handing out leaflets on climate change.

Telford and Wrekin Council said Rachel Whittaker and Neil Donaldson were ejected because they had not undergone Criminal Records Bureau checks or risk assessments before entering the park - a requirement under the Child Protection Act

For all our faults (TSA, Gitmo, customs laptop inspections, ...), at least over here a story like this would probably include the city getting sued for civil rights violations.

Re:WTF (1)

Fulcrum of Evil (560260) | more than 5 years ago | (#24954503)

what do you think is going to happen there? It's not like this is at all legal.

like going swimming by yourself at a public pool (3, Interesting)

Luyseyal (3154) | more than 5 years ago | (#24951689)

Yeah, even though I have a wife and kids, every now and then I get a chance to go to the pool alone. As a male, let me tell you you get some weird looks just hanging out by yourself there.

Very Irritating.
-l

Re:like going swimming by yourself at a public poo (1)

Ritchie70 (860516) | more than 5 years ago | (#24994383)

Before I was married I vacationed at Disney World a few times alone and experienced a bit of this at the water parks. Actually, maybe more than a bit - I truly have no idea, since I wouldn't have been wearing my glasses most of the time.

What is the right answer to "why are you at the park" anyhow? I would stammer and say something brilliant like "Huh? I don't understand, it's the park, I'm at the park because it's nice out and I felt like going to the park and wandering around."

Criminalising bachelorhood (1)

KudyardRipling (1063612) | more than 5 years ago | (#24952663)

Now it has become the choice between having a nagging wife (until the life insurance probationary period expires) and little bloodsucking leukemia magnets (until the last one gets his/her bachelor's degree) just to use a public facility without harassment and having (gasp) no debts and disposable income and being tossed out as a presumed paedophile.

A wagging bony digit points to all of us from Mr. Orwell's grave for the Magna Carta has become nothing but a loo roll.

Much ado about nothing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24957521)

People, people, people... please! This is the U.K. we are talking about. Home of the wishy-washiest police force known to mankind. There is nothing to worry about. Nothing to see here. Move along. Any encounter will in all likelihood go something like this:

Park Warden: Excuse me sir, I noticed you're here alone. Might I ask what you're doing in the park today?

Seedy Man in trenchcoat: I'm 'ere t' rape some kids.

Park Warden: Right. Sorry to disturb you. Carry on.

Idle? (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 5 years ago | (#24957865)

I'm confused -- why is this on Idle? Shouldn't it be YRO, or politics, or something?

Re:Idle? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24963153)

The editor wanted to show off the picture?

Shropshire (1)

Simmeh (1320813) | more than 5 years ago | (#24962707)

Well its Shropshire innit! It's not like we have many parks in England with wardens anyway....

Reprehensible, but NOT surprising (1)

Stanislav_J (947290) | more than 5 years ago | (#24963581)

Single, childless men (especially past a certain age) have always been viewed with some degree of suspicion. People tend to think you are either gay ("not that there's anything wrong with that"), a pedo, or some other variety of fill-in-the-blank weirdo. At best, you are written off as pathetic, worthless, or selfish.

Example: in many U.S. states, if you are a single, childless man, and happen to be poor, just try and get benefits like Medicaid, food stamps, etc. In many cases, you can't -- they reserve those things for poor mothers and their children. Plus they get other forms of assistance like AFDC, etc.

So, basically, you can be a single mother who has kids with 3 different fathers, in spite of being in no economic shape to feed and raise them, and get all kinds of help. But a male who has been responsible and kept his weenie under control, eschewing procreation because he knows he's not in a position economically to raise a family -- well, you're outta luck if you get sick or hungry.

Rant aside, a policy like that in the story should not pass muster in any Democratic society. If your taxes pay for that park, you have every right to be there. Unfortunately, the "if you've got nothing to hide" crowd is more and more comfortable with random, warrantless, baseless searches and interrogations in the name of (a)protecting the children, or (b)fighting the terrorists (choose one).

Ridiculous action (1)

ilovesymbian (1341639) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964327)

Child predators usually operate alone, and the park folks think that any adult who goes to the park without a child is a predator??

How stupid is that, kind sirs?

So in order to enjoy fresh breeze in the park, I have to drag my kids along each time? Crazy!!

Wait, WHAT?! (1)

Mr_Congeniality (878687) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964535)

If this is some crackdown on child molesters then maybe the authorities should spend their time making sure they don't live by a god damn park! What a bunch of bullocks. So if I go to the park to enjoy the sound of the birds, I have to be accompanied by an annoying and loud child? Or I get "Jack Bauer'd"? Yeah baby, knee cap me...mmmmm yeah!

The obvious solution (1)

objekt (232270) | more than 5 years ago | (#24964637)

is to just grab a random kid.

Re:The obvious solution (1)

VeNoM0619 (1058216) | more than 5 years ago | (#24968989)

Adult: I will give you a piece of candy to come with me.
Child: Whaddya gonna do to me mister?
Adult: I'm gonna walk you through the park... yea... nice and slow...

hahahahahahaha (1)

rakslice (90330) | more than 5 years ago | (#24969607)

"unmolested park experience"

Word choice FTW.

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