Wednesday 22 April 2009

Fighting the good fight.

I'm currently jacked up on a great deal of Holland and Barrett's finest ginseng and coffee, frantically and gleefully editing Red Pepper's special section on police violence and popular protest, which is due out in May. Myself and many others have put in a great deal of hard work at the last minute to get this section ready, and it's shaping up really nicely. Coverage of recent events in the mainstream media has been woefully lacking - Red Pepper's attempts to reverse that trend have not come without effort, so I hope some of you will read the issue when it's done.

So far, we've some fine contributions from reporters and witnesses who were in the Bishopsgate kettle, along with an academic digest laying out the precedent of police violence against protestors dating back to the Miners' Strike. Contributions from football supporters and mental health service users demonstrate that it isn't just protestors who are being targeted by inappropriate use of police powers, and we've got independent journalists investigating the effects of Section 44 and Section 27 on popular consciousness. All this, and more - possibly too much to actually fit into the print issue, but any content that doesn't make it into print will be syndicated here and online.

Commissioning this edition has been a lot of fun - it's great to excercise my editorial control freakery somewhere that really matters. If you follow this blog regularly - well, firstly, thank you, and secondly, I'd seriously urge you to consider subscribing to Red Pepper if you can, or to donate online if you're a web reader. The lovely powers that be let me do pretty much what I want with this blog, but I do write additional stuff for the print edition, and it's an all-round awesome publication which deserves a lot more attention than it's getting. In case you're wondering, like most of the Red Pepper team I don't currently get paid for any of the work I do for the magazine.

Right, I can't have any more caffeine or I will damage myself, so I'm off to spend whatever remains of wakefulness cross-referencing and deleting extraneous adverbs. If you've time and volition, please share with me your news, links and amusing pictures of cats in unlikely places, because goodness knows I need the distraction. :)

ETA: John Q Publican has also been fighting the good one, with an excellent and thought-provoking initial analysis of the Climate Camp Legal Team's report. Well worth a read.


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