In our post yesterday about Melanie Shaw’s conviction on three counts of arson, we alluded to, but did not elaborate upon, the Tommy Robinson/fringe right wing connection.
Robinson (real name Stephen Yaxley-Lennon) adopted the #FreeMelanieShaw mantra last month, which initially puzzled a great many people who failed to see the connection between Robinson’s case and Shaw’s.
However, given that those who follow the UK Column and David Icke have bought their story that Shaw is a “political prisoner” or “wronged whistle-blower” rather than a damaged and exploited person badly in need of mental health intervention, it’s easy to see why Robinson, along with others such as UKIP leader Gerrard Batten, might wish to hitch a ride on the coattails of her standing in the conspiracy community.
Certainly, others have tried to do the same.
In April 2016, Shaw blasted Belinda McKenzie, who she said had approached her and asked her to support the Hampstead SRA hoax. Shaw seemed to realise that Belinda was attempting to use her, and told her nothing doing. (Unfortunately the video in which Shaw described the interaction is no longer available, but it was reported here at the time.)
UK Column’s version
In January 2016, the UK Column website reported on Shaw’s case:
On Wednesday 11 January 2016, Melanie Shaw, the whistleblower on the horrific abuse of children which occurred at the then county council-run Beechwood Children’s Home in Nottinghamshire in the late 1980s, was given a two-year custodial sentence in a secret court hearing.
The nature of the charge against her is unclear and that information is refused when requested of court staff. The case took place late yesterday morning but it did not appear on any court lists until the hearing was past.
Melanie Shaw did not appear in person in court for this hearing, which was conducted by video link from her prison, as has also been the case with previous of her court ‘appearances’. She states that without fail, whenever in the past she has given testimony by such video link, she has been cut off on the pretext that “you were shouting”, which she denies.
The effect of this is to prevent her testimony from going on the court record, as well as to prevent her as defendant from hearing certain deliberations and assertions being made in the courtroom.
In addition, UK Column News is very confident that at this particular secret hearing, no member of the public was present, and particularly not any of the supporters who have been following Melanie Shaw’s case very closely. The public is therefore entirely dependent on any transcripts—accurate and complete or otherwise—which may be produced in order to find out what was said at the hearing.
And in regard to yesterday’s verdict, UK Column produced this video:
The dark assumptions of “secret court hearings” and stifled evidence confirm conspiracy believers’ belief that we live in a Kafka-esque dictatorship, where brave whistle-blowers are silenced and the public is placated with potentially inaccurate reports of what actually happens inside the closed court.
It suits people such as Robinson and Batten to ensure the public believes the UK Column version of Shaw’s story, as the more firmly they can convince their followers that they are being repressed, the easier it is to convince them that they possess the political/mob-based answers.
No real press freedom, please!
Interestingly, though, when Robinson was arrested and a journalist—Stephanie Finnegan, who reported on Shaw’s most recent case and was attacked on Tuesday by Twitter trolls for her trouble—fought to ensure the public’s right to know what was happening, she found herself on the wrong end of a howling mob of Robinson’s supporters.
Describing the Robinson supporters’ rage at having their leaders’ arrest properly reported, Finnegan wrote,
This shows not only the importance of having local court reporters who attend court daily, but also the importance of having a social media presence and using it responsibly.
Since then, I’ve received threats to harm me and members of my family, both physically and sexually.
So the response to a reporter fighting to ensure the public’s right to know about an arrest and court proceeding ended with the reporter receiving physical and sexual threats.
While the post-verdict reaction in Shaw’s case has not reached the fever pitch that Robinson’s attained, Robinson’s followers seem prepared to go to bat for Shaw, and Finnegan is a convenient target for some: “You seem a bit touchy! We were only having a laugh”…Uh-huh.
We fully expect that, just as certain fringe-right and ultra-religious people have attempted to latch onto the Hampstead SRA hoax as a means of furthering their own agendas, others will continue to hop aboard the UK Column/Melanie Shaw Express. After all, violent yobs look a lot less threatening when they can pretend to be fighting for the rights of an imprisoned woman.