Sunday 20 May 2007...
Having been a Police officer for 26 years in a Large City where CCTV has been used to very good effect in the prevention and detection of crime, I am still totally in agreement with DCC Readhead from Hampshire constabulary that the use of CCTV and other covert surveillance of the British Populace has gone way too far. I feel that once my service with the Police comes to an end I will want little to do with this country on its spiral into a repressed and surveillance bound "big brother knows best" regime.
Alan Fleming, Merseyside
The comments of Ian Readhead are ridiculous. I live in a large village where the only policing is a community officer who only patrols when the sun shines and is completely ineffective. The parish council installed cameras to tackle low level vandalism. This move was successful. You don't need a crime wave to make people's lives miserable. A brick through a window, thrown by someone who does not fear detection, can have as traumatic effect on the victim as any other crime.
Tom Holden, England
In the section on fingerprinting of schoolchildren, your reporter stated that there had been no complaints from parents. Whilst that may have been the case in the school he visited... the fact is that there have been many parental complaints in other schools where fingerprinting has been introduced.
We thought that today's segment about Orwellian shifts in our society was excellent.
Thank you for keeping this subject in the public eye.
Nanette & Russ
what worries me more than cctv is the taking and retention of finger prints and dna even i believe when u may only b a whitness. I read that th e chelsea manger had his prints and dna taken re the problems with his dog. This seems ridiculous.
Do the goverment deliberately set out to rob old people of dignity by means tested care,taking homes and savings from them we have already pa yed though paying the big stamp all these years,take note all you young people who are struggling now with mortgages like I did just to have it taken fro m you.
SOCIAL SECURITY OFFICIALS ARE ALREADY ON TRAINING COURSES RE: ALL CLAIMANTS HAVING MANDATORY I.D. CARDS. CLAIMANTS ALREADY DISCLOSE A GREAT DEA L OF INFO. INCLUDING BANK ACCOUNT NUMBERS. ONCE AGAIN, WE CAN SEE THAT MONEY BUYS PRIVACY. THE INTRODUCTION OF I.D . CARDS IS DANGEROUS. THE POSSESSION O F SUCH INFO. IS OPEN TO ENORMOUS ABUSE. ONCE DONE, IT CAN NEVER BE UNDONE & THE ARGUMENT RE: FIGHTING CRIME etc. IS A DANGEROUS RED HERRING. WAKE UP !
Cctv should be on every street corner! Armed robberies, rape, muggings and burglaries would be slashed, communities would be much safer-
colin from Basildon
Its not the suvelance camera but its what is done with the video footage and the integrety of the people who have acess to it.
how We are moving to a non-democratic state. MPs exclude themselves from public scrutiny while subjecting the public to ID Cards and a nati onal identity register. This will remove human rights and privacy without our consent. Gordon Brown has the chance to prove his recent pledge by revoking both these bad bills. Otherwise he is just another Blair - self-serving and untrustworthy.
When is our goverment going to shut our borders on immergration or are they going to wait till coutry go's in the red,we have not got the money to keep the hole world and its people.
Delighted Ian Readhead's comments. Man with understanding.
last year @ 72 I was arrested f-printed& dna,d released when charge dropped but above retained
PEOPLE WHO OPPOSE A DNA DATABASE CONTAINING RECORDS OFF ALL PEOPLE IN THE UK MUST WORRY ABOUT RAPING OR MURDERING AT SOME STAGE IN THE FUTURE TH OSE CITING CIVIL LIBERTIES AS A REASON FOR OPPOSING SUCH A CONCEPT ARE PATHETIC AND I WONDER IF THEY ARE THE SAME PEOPLE WHO WHO CHOOSE TO IGNORE THE REA LITY THAT CHILD ABUSE IS RIFE AND FOR THIS REASON IF NO OTHER WE MUST SET ONE UP ALL THAT THEN REMAINS IS FOR MORE PRISONS TO BE BUILT TO HOUSE ALL THOSE THAT IMPEDE THE CIVIL LIBERTIES OF LAW ABIDING PEOPLE WHO SHOULD HAVE NOTHING TO FEAR FROM SUCH A SCHEME
if the chief constable cant live in a country with cctv cameras he should go elsewhere
m. ashmore kent
Re: CCTV I agree with David Blunkett. If you are living right you have got nothing to fear and in town centres your behaviour shou ld be under observation.
I'd like to see cctv cameras on every street corner as these will be our police force in the near future. When did viewers last see a local pol ice officer? From:
Chris Pearson, Hythe, Kent.
Primarily Policing should be protection + prevention not solely detection.
Alex Chambers Lincolnl
IF WE COULD TUNE IN OUR T.V. TO ANY CCTV CAMERA IN THE COUNTRY, I BELIEVE IT WOULD BE THE MOST POPULAR CHANNEL ON T.V.
Parents are complaining about finger printing of children without parental consent across the country
I DONT HAVE A PROBLEM WITH CCTV CAMERAS. THE MORE THE BETTER,I FEEL. I HAVE BEEN A LONDONER FOR NEARLY FORTY YEARS AND I AM SHOCKED AT THE INCRE ASE IN CRIME AND THE SEVERITY OF CRIMES. SURELY ITS BETTER THAT THESE CRIMES ARE CAPTURED ON CAMERA SO THAT THE PERPETRATORS CAN BE CAUGHT? I ADHERE VERY STRONGLY TO THE VIEW THAT IF I AM JUST GOING ABOUT MY BUSINESS, NOT DOING ANYTHING WRONG,THEN I DONT HAVE ANYTHING TO WORRY ABOUT IF IM CAUGHT ON CAMERA S,EVEN IF IT IS UP TO 300 TIMES A DAY,AS YOUR REPORT SUGGESTED. SO WHAT IF IM ON CAMERA THAT MUCH? INNOCENT PEOPLE SUCH AS MYSELF WILL BE ON CAMERA SIMPL Y WALKING AROUND,SHOPPING, SOCIALISING ETC,WORKING. BUT THE PERPETRATORS OF CRIMES WILL BE CAUGHT ON CAMERAS,DOING THEIR CRIMES,AND THAT IS SURELY A GOOD THING AND ENSURES THEY CAN BE MORE EFFECTIVELY CAUGHT? ALSO,THE ABUNDANCE OF CAMERAS COULD ACT AS CRIME PREVENTION,SURELY?
NAOMI SACHS,WEST LONDON
If I have to go into town at night I look for a bus stop where there is a cctv camera . I feel safer.
if you use a library card at High St. library, you are then recorded as being in that part of town at that time & date. That is scary!
Terr in Nottm.
Surveillance laws are made by MP s who dont want tax payers to know about their expenses!
Don McDarren, Anglesey
i have a cctv camera less than 20 feet from my house and it has not seen my car been damaged by thugs three times.
David murphy durham
politicians always emphasis on the advantage of using cctv or alternative energy, but thery fail to address the negative aspects. They should t ell both aspects of the issues to the public, based on that they should make their decision.
who guards the guards
I don't have a problem with CCTV etc, but I am a little concerned at how long the information is held, and who controls it.
Andy Waters, Newcastle.
I hav no problem with my dna or criminal record bein kept indefinately. Mayb it should b the 2nd criminal record, with a 1st havin a 5yr max. D NA thou has good reasons as well though, to sav a life!
Kieran wright, herne bay, kent
the fact that people feel more secure with cctv speaks volumes about peoples feelings of insecurity & the lack of police visable on the streets.
Phil coutie, Coventry
cctv only as good as its operators. we have many problems at night in camden town, london.
freedom is to be free of fear.
I'm a teacher. Last yr a child accused me of s'thin which never happened. CCTV cameras were able 2 vindicate me. I'm all in favour of them
there wd hv been fewer murders in N.I if we.d had cctv.
Alex Bangor ,N.I.
What about Connexions? This is the biggest secret policing organisation in the U.K today. I researched for my Degree.
big brother is watching but there isnt a problem until he takes an intrest.
Half our family is French, and it would appear nuclear power has been a huge success in France. Is it the old story- the English hate to admit the French are better at nuclear power, transport, health, social security, education etc?
If Britain has plenty of alternative energy options, let's set up a 'Dragons Den' panel and let inventors/scientists pitch their solutions to energy producers. Somewhere there is a viable approach but risks have to be taken. There will be failures but too cautious an approach simply causes delays and we don't have the time.
With the closure of power stations using fossil fuels, it is important to look at all forms of energy, for the next 50 years, including renewable and nuclear fission. Energy efficient devices should be encouraged.
Paul Harper, UK
Let's make up the energy gap with something permanent, cheaper and renewable.
Decentralised energy generation, as used by various councils such as Woking is a key part of the solution. It eliminates the 60% of energy wasted in large central generation plants by allowing use of the heat generated in local electricity generation.
Frank Moran, UK
Surely the handing over of the responsibility for the provision of energy to private businesses as laid down by Alastair Darling is a renouncing of responsibility?
If politicians are not making this - probably the most important decision of the age - why do we need politicians ?
We r adding cost to our finished product with all the enuironmental legislation and will become uncompetitiue in the global market when other countries do nothing we r a small cog
liz maddison durham
If Britain does re-embrace nuclear, why not develop far safer Thorium-based technology, which produces NO Plutonium, cannot go 'critical', and l eaves waste that becomes safe in hundreds - not thousands - of years?
im a great bleva in nukepowa i workd 4a firm that had a hand in and personaly helpd build parts 4 most of the nuke 1st tx
lance barker derby
i was wondering what the government its doing about futuristic energy ideas ie lasers? As for big brother its a good idea but also a bad idea, but why cant we look at them as they look at us?
ref green energy. Tidal power never lets u down & when its high tide in Bristol it will b high tide 6 hrs later diagonally across t country
discussions seem 2 be based on 1980s picture of nuclear power.Really need prog 2 update us on new reactors.
why not make all new houses have solar power
I find it hypocritical that the government is constantly telling us how we should live our lives to prevent global warming and yet at the same time they are cutting down urban trees at an unprecedented rate.
My garden is surrounded by trees and yes it takes a lot of time in the autumn and winter to clear the mess up but the colours are fantastic and the wildlife they support in the spring summer is delightful to watch.......not to mention the noise buffer they provide from the dual carriageway they've built through the countryside!
No one on your programme mentioned that trees actually help to nourish our planet; cleaning the air, apart from their aesthetic value. The answer to the root problem and its effect on adjacent buildings is root pruning; i.e. digging a trench around the tree in a ring and cutting the roots back. Leaving the trench there may not be possible without fencing but in some places it works.
Pat Thomas, London
When I lived in East Ham, now Newham, east London, the plane trees were pollarded every year to stop them growing too large. The councils could replace them with smaller trees, but either option would cost money which would have to come out of the CCTV budget I suppose.
Bee Edwards, UK
I am very keen to protect trees and am campaigning to protect our open spaces but trees are like dogs- we love them but if a dog attacks or threatens a child it should be put down. Similarly trees should be felled if they threaten the health ,safety and property of people who live close by.
Ron Page, Wales.
As a tree professional I come into contact on a daily basis with many of the opinions expressed here. Many people want to retain trees at all cost, while others cannot see the inherent beauty of trees in the neighbourhood, only the 'nuisance' they cause. It is not easy to maintain a balance and please everyone.
I would say that one of my main frustrations is that many people fail to understand that trees, like humans, have a finite life cycle - they eventually die too! But because the tree life cycle is over a longer timescale than our own, it is often assumed that a tree will 'go on forever' - not true.
Any tree owner, including local authorities, have a responsibility to ensure that trees in their ownership remain safe. Unfortunately, this means that sometimes trees that appear healthy may need to be felled - root decay and decay of the main stem can often occur without any visual symptoms (to the untrained eye anyway). I think it is essential that tree professionals spend more time explaining why we do what we do - as is apparent from many of the comments here, this doesn't seem to happen frequently enough.
Pete Hughes, Peterborough
Trees act as pollution filters. Roots can damage buildings. Buildings can be repaired. Not sure about the atmosphere.
Why doesnt the BBC give us a report from the next Bilderberg meeting on may 31.wasnt Tony bliar and gordon frown groomed at bilderberg?
I like to ask when Somthing is going to be done about the big growing problem of young english homless. And the many who are in b&b's and the many who are on the council housing list's. There's is a very very big housing crisis going on. I should no im termanally ill with cancar and ive payed m y taxes. And its my second year in my b&b with other's all Waiting. To be housed in affordaball rented housing ???.Its time that the gov wake's up in the real world and start's building low cost homes.There'r a housing crisis ok.
Mr matthew kemlow-cook.Eastbourne
MP,S EXCLUDED FROM SMOKING BAN,-NOW FROM FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT. HOW CAN THEY JUSTIFY THIS? IT,S GROSS HYPOCRISY!
These were some of your comments on the Politics Show on Sunday 20 May 2007 at 12:00 BST on BBC One.
You can reach the programme by using the form below to message the Politics Show.
Disclaimer: The BBC may edit your comments and cannot guarantee that all emails will be published.