As tensions escalate due to uncertainty surrounding Brexit, the Canadian government has issued a statement for its citizens to exercise a high degree of caution when travelling to the United Kingdom.
More “no” votes
Canada’s decision comes after the British government voted against a proposed Brexit deal for a third time, leading to mass protests.
On Wednesday, London’s City Airport was disrupted by Extinction Rebellion, a radical environmentalist group. According to the BBC, as of Thursday, police have arrested nearly 850 people in connection with the protest, which caused major delays for both passengers and workers outside the airport.
“We continue to work closely with the Metropolitan Police to ensure the safe operation of the airport, which remains fully open and operational,” said a spokesman for London City Airport.
Among those arrested included an Ex Met Detective who had glued himself to the pavement to prevent his removal, while he repeated various alarmist slogans.
BBC Newsnight political editor Nicholas Watt was one of the passengers on the plane and tweeted about his experience.
“My flight from London City airport to Dublin has just been grounded by a climate change protester, ” Watt wrote.
“On runway and about to take off when smartly dressed man in late middle age stood up with iPhone to deliver lecture on climate change up and down aisle.
“Cabin crew calmly and very politely asked protester to resume his seat. Politely but persistently he declined and proceeded to deliver his lecture on climate change in the aisle.”
“Some passengers were annoyed, others listened to lecture with humour as cabin crew alerted pilot.”
Another notable person who had been convinced to take part in the protest included former Paralympic cyclist James Brown.
The blind cyclist streamed part of his escapades on his phone, claiming that he’d been motivated to action by other activists and had done all he could to stop the flight, going so far as climbing on top of the plane, despite being terrified of heights and needing to be rescued.
On Monday and Tuesday, roughly two hundred environmental activists
The protest began Monday with activists claiming they’re not going anywhere. Many who remained until Tuesday were arrested by police.
According to The Guardian, the tactic was part of a bigger ploy to force a two-week government shutdown and included other protests at various locations around the U.K., such as Westminster Bridge, Lambeth Bridge, Trafalgar Square and Smithfield market.
They also set up roadblocks, glued themselves to cars, and set up tents in the streets to cause as much disruption to daily productivity as possible.
When threatened with arrests, one activist said, “They came round and told us that we should be moving on. I don’t think we are going to move on. It’s not a risk if you know you’re going to be arrested. It’s something I’ll do if I need to.”
“We’ve got extremely good legal support and it’s a very well set-up organisation, so I feel like I’ll be supported all through the way. An arrest doesn’t mean a conviction.”
Another said, “Just because you’re being arrested doesn’t mean you do or don’t support Extinction Rebellion any more than the next person.”
“There are people within this group that support this group very much and they won’t be getting arrested, but they support everybody.”
Sky News questioned one activist, 33-year-old NHS manager Mike
“I want to make a statement that [the activists] are all different sorts of people from all different walks of life, not just people you would call hippies.”
Gunn also mentioned that his children’s futures were motivators for his protest.
“We will decide as a group when we are going to move, and we are not going to let police tell us when,” he continued.
“I would not like to get arrested, but if that happens when I am exercising my right to protest and deliver a good life for my children, then I will take it on the chin.”
According to a poll conducted by the U.K.Sun, which polled 2,000 British people, half of those under the age of 45 have sent naked selfies via mobile, and at least a quarter admitted to having filmed themselves having sex.
According to the U.K. Sun, a quarter still have a nude photograph of an ex on their phone, while 20 percent have shown others a naked picture of their partner.
20 percent of British men under 45 say they’ve been a victim of revenge porn (when people intentionally leak naked pictures of their ex on the internet), and half of all those surveyed say they fear becoming the victim of revenge porn.
Additionally, 42 percent of British people survey have participated in phone sex, while one in ten did it while in a relationship, unbeknownst to their partner.
Two thirds have sent sexual text messages to some, “often someone they were not in a relationship with,” the U.K. Sun reports.
And a whopping two thirds of Brits aged 18-45 have sexted someone, often someone they were not in a relationship with.
Finally, all this sexting or potential sexting seems to lead to a growing mistrust within relationships.
40 percent of those surveyed admitted they snooped on their partner’s phone activity, either because they feared they were being cheated on or they were “just being nosy.”
Over half of those who have snooped have been caught and gave the latter reason as a defence of their begaviour, while over one third say they did it because they didn’t trust their partners.
U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson asks Queen to suspend parliament to push forward with no-deal Brexit
British MP’s have been voicing their unending concerns that the U.K. may face a constitutional crisis after it was revealed Wednesday that Prime Minister Boris Johnson contacted the Queen to ask that she temporarily suspend Parliament.
“The prime minister confirmed in a letter that he had asked the queen to close Parliament from early September until mid-October,” reports NBC News. “He said the current parliamentary session had gone on too long, and claimed the move was the best way to pursue his “bold and ambitious domestic legislative agenda.”
Critics of Johnson and Remainers alike, many who are known for trying to thwart previous Brexit plans, were outraged over Johnson’s royal request and characterized it as unconstitutional.
The speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow, said Johnson’s move would be a “constitutional outrage.”
“However it is dressed up, it is blindingly obvious that the purpose of [suspending Parliament] now would be to stop [MPs] debating Brexit and performing its duty in shaping a course for the country,” Bercow said. Additionally, the speaker said that it would be “an offence against the democratic process and the rights of Parliamentarians as the people’s elected representatives.”
“Constitutional outrage” seems to be a common phrase thrown around after Wednesday’s revelation.
“Boris Johnson’s attempt to suspend parliament to avoid scrutiny of his plans for a reckless No Deal Brexit is an outrage and a threat to our democracy,” opposition party leader Jeremy Corbyn said in a tweet.
“Labour will work across Parliament to hold the government to account and prevent a disastrous No Deal.”
“It is a constitutional outrage,” said Corbyn in an interview with Sky News that was posted to his Twitter. “This is an attempt by a Prime Minister, who was elected by a very small number of people in the country, the Conservative Party membership, to ride roughshod over parliament and to prevent any legislation or debate that would stop this country leaving the EU without a deal and all the problems it would cause.
“[Johnson] seems to want to run headlong into the arms of Donald Trump with more determination than I’ve ever seen in anyone before,” Corbyn continued. “This is extraordinary. He needs to be held to account by parliament, not by shutting down parliament, but by attending parliament and answering the questions…”
According to the BBC, shutting down parliament is technically call prorogation and can only be enacted at the behest of the Queen after the prime minister advises the Queen to do so.
So, yes, it is possible for the Queen to shut down parliament, and it has been done in the past. However, the decision to suspend parliament through monarchal powers has become a highly controversial proposition in contemporary U.K. politics, especially during Brexit, a similarly controversial moment in the U.K.’s history.
In a tweet, Labour MP Ben Bradshaw said, “[Johnson’s move] would be a coup, plain and simple, against our parliamentary democracy [and would] drag the monarch into an unprecedented constitutional crisis. [It] must be resisted by all true democrats.”
The tweet included the hashtags ‘#blockthecoup’ and ‘#brexitshambles’.
Additionally, former Prime Minister John Mayor, and other high-profile figures, have already threatened to go to the courts to stop Johnson, and a “legal challenge led by the SNP’s justice spokeswoman, Joanna Cherry, is already working its way through the Scottish courts,” reports the BBC.
In an interview, Remainer and First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon called the possible suspension of parliament a move towards a “dictatorship.”
“Shutting down Parliament in order to force through a no-deal Brexit, which will do untold and lasting damage to the country against the wishes of MPs is not democracy, it’s dictatorship,” she said.
According to the BBC, despite promises to block Johnson through the judiciary, “it is not possible to mount a legal challenge to the Queen’s exercise of her personal prerogative powers.” However, “BBC legal affairs correspondent Clive Coleman said a judicial review could be launched into the advice given to her by the prime minister – to determine whether that advice was lawful.”
In response to Johnson’s move, Labour MP David Lammy called for “peaceful protests and civil disobedience” if the Queen were to exercise her power. He then posted a series of tweets comparing this moment in U.K.’s history to the civil rights movement in America.
“With this, the unelected poundshop dictator Boris Johnson threatens to end Britain’s long history of Parliamentary democracy,” he said. “If Parliament is silenced on the biggest issue of our time we must take to the streets in peaceful protest and civil disobedience.”
It is not clear what sort of “civil disobedience” Lammy wants to see, only that other tweets suggest that he believes civil disobedience will put pressure on parliament to block the decision, much like the civil rights movement put pressure on American congress.