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To not be sure who is wrong in the Golly dispute?

(280 Posts)
Mitmoo Wed 07-Sep-11 07:41:58

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2034203/Grandmother-faces-court-placing-Golliwog-window-dispute-neighbour-black-wife.html

OK it's a DM to flame me but never the less..........

A grandmother has a longrunning dispute over boundary issues, which I know from personal experience can be extremely distressing, even though in my case it was just a part of my small back garden not serious land as in this case.

The grandmother IMO was probably being racist in putting the golly in her window, but it is in her house and no one is being forced to look at it. She says it is a grandchild's toy and was put there only while tidying up. Other neighbour was so offended they photographed it!

But AIBU in thinking the other couple were being ridiculous to go to the police about it and now the original woman (probably in the wrong, don't buy the grandchilds toy story) could be facing two years in jail?

Perhaps there is an argument for granny being a nut in this day and age to buy a golly for a child, while admittedly loved the badges from the jamjars in the 70's.

Ultimately it is a doll, in her house, on her windowsill, she's wrong, she's probably racist but how can this be a good use of our courts, our legal system, this is a neighbour dispute.

How can they prove what was in her mind when she placed the golly in the window sill? AIBU in thinking these families are as bad as each other and are blowing this up out of all proportion, while accepting boundary disputes do get under your skin big time.

It seems to me involving the police was vindictive and a court case over this is unnecessary?

It's the sort of behaviour if I saw it I would say "silly cow" or similar and move on.

Two wrongs and all that. Not defending racist behaviour for a second just seems to me this has been blown out of proportion in making this a court case with possible jail time for having a golly on your windowsill.

Particularly as I am not sure they can prove her intent when putting it there.
We are supposed to be in dire financial straights as a country, how much is this case costing?

OR AIBU?

Rowena8482 Wed 07-Sep-11 07:56:58

It does seem to be a bit like they are legislating her thoughts, based on her decor. Now if she'd sprayed a dirty great racist slogan across her wall, there would be no doubt. Even though "everyone" knows that the golly probably is a not very sly dig, it is not overtly abusive, in itself it's just a toy, and she hasn't actually said or done anything TO the neighbours. It's the "if someone is offended then the thing/word/deed in question is offensive" in LAW that gets to me. We can despise racism and all the other isms, we can refrain from them, we can use the law to punish ha ha in this country just now people who break the law, but how can we tell people what to think and feel, and make it illegal for certain thoughts and feelings? If someone is a racist or any other -ist, then that's how they think and feel. What's next? taking away the children of "unsuitable" people say Nick Griffin, or this lady's grandchildren so the state can "raise them properly"?
I can say I'm outraged and offended by a Barbie doll, they are a racial stereotype, and under the law as it now stands, legally could expect to be taken as seriously as this golly case... you cannot make it illegal to dislike someone, for whatever reason. Even little kids, when they fall out, use appearance as the source of abuse to hurl - ginger, specyy, fatty and so on ad infinitum, why is someone's colour any different? if she called her neighbour fatbitch and fuckface and put caricatures up that wouldn't be illegal.... I'm rambling now lol so shall stop.

itisnearlysummer Wed 07-Sep-11 07:58:28

I think "racially aggravated harrassment" probably was her intention, but like you say, they can't prove it. It's a bit thought police-y.

She probably thought she was being quite clever and that she'd be ok because she'd be able to say it was a child's toy.

I think I'd also think "silly cow" but perhaps if it was intended to offend me personally and was the latest act in a long running dispute, I'd be less likely to be so magnanimous.

AmberLeaf Wed 07-Sep-11 08:05:00

www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2034203/Grandmother-faces-court-placing-Golliwog-window-dispute-neighbour-black-wife.html

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Wed 07-Sep-11 08:27:20

in her house, but facing outward? To me it's pretty much equivalent to calling her neighbour one, constantly, pretty vile IMO.

CamperFan Wed 07-Sep-11 08:27:47

If there is a case to be made out if this, then why not? Serve her right, horrible, small minded woman that she must be. And they are not "legislating her thoughts", but her actions - I mean, it's pretty obvious!

ColdSancerre Wed 07-Sep-11 08:32:21

I'm my mind the women who put it there is in the wrong. It was done to cause offence.

crazynanna Wed 07-Sep-11 08:38:59

Sounds like she did it to be racist....so she should be prosecuted.

Involving the police is not vindictive......advertising racism in your window is.

HoHoLaughingMonster Wed 07-Sep-11 08:43:35

Not saying what the grangmother did was nice like, but this is ridiculous. They still sell Gollys in shops. So it's obv not illegal to own one and have it in your house wherever you like. And no ones taking the shops to court for racially agregated harrassment are they?

Mitmoo Wed 07-Sep-11 09:15:48

The woman complained to the police just days after planning permission was granted to the grandmother to build stables, stables, that the woman objected to. That's why I say it looks mean and vindictive. If she was so offended by it then why wait until she'd lost on the planning permission case.

Is having a golly in your window advertising racism though Crazynanna I hadn't thought about them being readily for sale until hoho mentioned it. I've just googled it and they are being marketted as Golly Dollies

"Golly Dollies are an ideal size and soft material for young-ones to cuddle! Being individually hand-made they are also completely unique and highly collectable and would make a perfect present for any doll lover or Golly fan/collector"

Just wondering if the opposite could be argued in that buying the child a golly is promoting racial harmony? I know today that sounds odd but when I was a child my parents bought me a black dolly, she'd cry when you layed her down not because they were racist, they absolutely weren't but because I guess "why not" it was a lovely doll and I enjoyed playing with it just as I did my white dolls.

Not sure on this one to be honest. I am almost sure involving the police was totally unnecessary and due to the woman smarting from having lost the planning permission case days earlier.

The other point is that the doll was not facing her house but facing in the opposite direction so the woman would have had to walk around to the other property to be able to see it and photograph it. It wasn't in a window facing her property which would probably make a difference.

StewieGriffinsMom Wed 07-Sep-11 09:21:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Mitmoo Wed 07-Sep-11 09:27:16

I realise they are deemed by many to be racist today but when I was a kid growing up we loved the badges from the jam jars. If they were portrayed as somehow demonic, bad, gangsagollies then yes, but they are portrayed as fun, marketted as cuddly and in a positive light. Not sure jumps back on the fence.

Tanif Wed 07-Sep-11 09:28:28

Stewie you think the intent was racist. But can you prove it, beyond all reasonable doubt? Because that's what the law is based on.

spookshowangellovesit Wed 07-Sep-11 09:29:10

the house next door has an elmo and a cookie monster and a kermit all pointing out of the window at me....should i take offence that my neighbour is calling me a muppet?

solidgoldbrass Wed 07-Sep-11 09:29:36

I think in this case the grandmother should have been prosecuted as it was obviously her intent to insult and harass the neighbour she was already rowing with - and given there's an ongoing dispute between the neighbours, the golly is only going to be one aspect of it. If she'd never met the neighbour before and always had a golly in her window (ie old lady who doesn't consider them racist should not really be expected to change the decor of her own home), it would be unreasonable to prosecute.

TiggyD Wed 07-Sep-11 09:33:11

She probably did it to annoy but that's not really provable.

Probable racist.

StewieGriffinsMom Wed 07-Sep-11 09:35:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MitchiestInge Wed 07-Sep-11 09:36:08

'you live in the countryside and think you have got away from this sort of nonsense'

haha, obviously didn't know Suffolk at all

itisnearlysummer Wed 07-Sep-11 09:37:43

I didn't realise they did still sell gollies until I saw them for sale in a gift shop in a little village on the North York Moors! DH and I were really surprised and assumed it was because it was a small village, but then he saw some for sale in London so decided not!

meditrina Wed 07-Sep-11 09:39:13

I agree with sgb.

<BTW, a day after this thread appears, it's on the Wright Stuff>

workedoutforthebest Wed 07-Sep-11 09:39:58

She did it so that she can be part of the anti PC brigade. So that she can sit there and say 'I've been in this country all my life, blah blah blah and I can't believe I can't even have a doll in the window'. Then she'll probably be on the front cover of the daily mail with all her grandkids (who at this point will be crying because they're not allowed their 'golly') and so the circle of twattishness life continues....

Malcontentinthemiddle Wed 07-Sep-11 09:44:12

Perfectly summed up, workedout!

Tanif Wed 07-Sep-11 09:44:25

To be fair, being racist is not a crime. You can think/say what the hell you want (allegedly). The only way someone should be prosecuted for racism is if they actually make the victim feel intimidated or threatened or physically cause harm to them or their property.

In this instance, no one has claimed they were more than a bit miffed/upset by the old woman's actions. And let's be honest, old people can be pretty damn offensive to most sectors of society.

izzybiz Wed 07-Sep-11 09:45:55

The doll was placed facing outwards perfectly upright and between the window and the blind.

Just put there whilst tidying....hmm

mindgone Wed 07-Sep-11 09:46:05

I really don't get how they are racist! I always loved the golly badges, and have several, and also have a metal golly plaque in my kitchen that was given to me as a 21st birthday present. I am in in mixed race marriage with mixed race children! My golly is just something that I've had for years ( since way before meeting my DH) and looks nice in my kitchen! Other friends in mixed race relationships have never mentioned it either. I think this couple are either being over sensitive or pretending they are to fight the planning permission!

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