Open Letter to Michael Gove and Chris Grayling
You find yourselves in total disagreement with your Leader regarding our nation’s future relationship with the European Union.
Together with other present and former members of David Cameron’s Cabinet you have nailed your colours firmly to the mast. That is entirely commendable and has earned you the respect of millions of British voters, but, as a veteran of the Maastricht rebellion myself, I can well understand that the last thing that you want to do is to inflict damage upon your Party. Nevertheless you find yourselves in an uncomfortable situation. On the one hand you are perfectly persuaded as to the righteousness of your cause but, on the other hand, if my experience is anything to go by, you are perplexed as to why your Leader doesn’t share your opinion which does, after all, reflect the mood of the country – as will be demonstrated on June 23rd!
In trying to understand why, as current and former Justice Secretaries, you have thus far steadfastly ignored all entreaties to highlight the fundamental differences between English common law and the criminal justice systems extant in most other EU member states – and the very real and frightening prospect that if the nation is foolish enough to vote to remain within the EU their corpus juris will be imposed upon us – I can only come to one of two conclusions.
Perhaps you are embarrassed that as recently as November 2014 you both voted to reaffirm Britain’s acceptance of the European Arrest Warrant (EAW) which is, as I feel sure you recognise, the thin end of a very thick wedge and in Counsel’s Opinion a negation of the law of habeas corpus – habeas corpus having once been described by Archbishop Desmond Tutu as being “such an incredible part of freedom”!
Of course I realise that you were, figuratively speaking, ‘over the barrel’ on this one because as Cabinet Ministers, bound by the long-established convention of ‘collective responsibility’, you had no option – you either toed the line or otherwise tendered your resignations and I can well understand that you would be deterred from doing that for fear of destabilising the entire administration.
Alternatively you may feel that opening up this ‘second front’ will put you so far ‘beyond the Pale’ that any post-Referendum reconciliation within the Conservative Party will become impossible.
The reason that I am able to address you in these terms without fear of recriminations is that, mercifully, I am still a ‘free’ person in a relatively ‘free country’. I do not fear false accusation, arbitrary arrest or wrongful imprisonment because my freedom is vouchsafed by the English common law, with its roots in Magna Carta, although I have to confess that I am more than a little exercised by the fact that, by dint of the EAW, the circumstances now exist in which any one of us can be arrested without any necessity on the part of the powers-that-be to produce the least shred of evidence that we have indeed committed an offence!
I cannot bring myself to believe that either of you think that it is satisfactory that, as things stand, the great British public are going to vote in a Referendum affecting the lives of generations as yet unborn without knowing that if they vote ‘Remain’ there is the very real prospect that ‘common law’ will be superseded by corpus juris and that they will effectively be kissing goodbye to ‘Trial by Jury’, the ‘Presumption of Innocence’, the withholding of the defendant’s ‘Previous Convictions’ and all the other defences which, since time immemorial, have protected British subjects against coercion by the state, not the least of which is the law of habeas corpus.
Well-known journalists have told me that the public aren’t much interested in this subject! That is a travesty of the truth!
The truth is that the public don’t actually know about these things because nobody, but nobody has been prepared to enlighten them.
For obvious reasons the Prime Minister and all other ‘Remainians’ have a vested interest in keeping people in the dark on this issue but if we can’t look to the likes of yourselves to break the conspiracy of silence then to whom should we turn?
For the sake of our very freedom and democracy I implore you to give this topic ‘the oxygen of publicity’ whilst there is still time to do so.
Christopher Gill (Freedom Association President and former Ludlow MP).
[Ed: because of the extreme importance of this issue, please share this letter with colleagues, friends and family members. We cannot afford to let this once-in-a-lifetime chance of getting back our Freedom slip through our hands!]