… two heavy-handed PCSOs marched into the store - and told staff to take down because it was 'offensive'.As usual with the ‘MainlyFail’, dig a little deeper into the body of the story, and you find this isn’t strictly true:
Shop assistant Cath Jewitt, 68, said that she took the mannequin down immediately after being 'advised' it was inappropriate.Well, then the thing to do is to say ‘It’s my shop and I deem it appropriate. You have no business telling me it isn’t. Haven’t you got drowning kids to watch, or something?’…
And if someone points out that they are ‘only acting on concerns and can’t ignore them because it’s their job’ well, think again:
A police spokesman confirmed the PCSOs had acted even though nobody had complained.I thought they were far too busy dealing with complaints about parking, dog poo, feral teenagers or FaceBook spats?
Surely they don’t have so much free time on their hands they can afford to go looking for potential ‘crimes’?
A spokesman for South Yorkshire Police said that it was feared some people may think the mannequin is 'inappropriate'.And if the shopkeeper had dismissed the ‘advice’ as worthless, and continued with their display?
'Two PCSOs, on normal patrol duties called into the shop to ask if they would mind taking the mannequin out of the shop window, as some people may find it inappropriate,' he said.
'This advice was given in an attempt to prevent possible community tension on a sensitive issue.'
What would you have done?
The mannequin has now been dressed as Where's Wally.We’ll just have to hope no-one called Wally grabs the next passing uniformed cretin and says ‘Hey, about this dummy… No, not your colleague…’
And while we have nonsense like this happening, I'm much, much less inclined to listen to 'Oh, it's all the fault of everyone else!' from the likes of the Inspector.
Do the police have to put up with the dregs of everyone else's failings? Yes, undoubtedly.
But let's not forget how often they make a rod for their own backs.