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Three faces of Philip Davies, and none of them pleasant: The MP talks (and talks, and talks) in a bid to talk out the Istanbul Convention Bill.

I know this is the Season of Goodwill, but I won’t shed any tears if a passing reindeer craps on Philip Davies’s head.

Today (December 16), this man – the Shame of Shipley – tried to filibuster a Parliamentary Bill that would ratify the Istanbul Convention on tackling and preventing violence against women.

Perhaps he holds some kind of grudge against the UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson, who co-signed a letter urging the UK government to ratify the Convention.

Emma Watson, the UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador, co-signed a letter calling on the UK government to ratify the Istanbul Convention [Image: Rex Features].

Perhaps his problem lies in the fact that Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and Tim Farron, leader of the Liberal Democrats, also signed.

Perhaps he thinks the Conservative Government is betraying him (he thinks it is sexist to focus on violence against women).

Here are some more of the things he said to justify his position during his 78-minute speech:

Because the title of the Bill has about ‘combating violence against women’ then it presumes as long as you support that premise you must support this particular Bill, and therefore if you oppose this Bill it means you must be in favour, as it follows, of violence against women and children.

“Now that’s the kind of level of debate I’d expect from the morons on Twitter.

Having offended Twitter users, he said:

I don’t take the view that violence against women and girls is somehow worse than violence against men and boys.

That’s not the point; the violence may not be worse, but there really is far more of it. I note that the Daily Mirror web page carrying the story from which I’m pulling these quotes has a link to another news story with photographs of a woman who suffered horrific burns after her boyfriend doused her in petrol and set her on fire.

He tried to compare domestic violence with street crime:

My premise is that all the evidence shows men are more likely to be victims of violent crime in this country than women.

“If somebody comes up to because they hate you and beats you up to a pulp, it seems to me the nuance of what they hate you is less important than the scale of the injuries you’ve suffered.

That’s not the point. Street crime involves people who are either strangers or who may be expected to have a certain amount of animosity towards a person. Domestic crime is in the home, where people should expect to feel safe, and is perpetrated by partners who are supposed to be a symbol of that safety – and not a threat. It is a false comparison

This is not, as they say, rocket science. He continued:

He raised the case of Sadie Morris:

A female paedophile was sentenced to five years in jail after photographing herself abusing a three-year-old girl.

Or even the case of a Romanian sex gang led by women who trafficked vulnerable women into Britain and forced them into prostitution.

So what? Two ‘wrongs’ don’t make a ‘right’; these crimes by women don’t justify crimes against them.

In the same vein, when Catherine West told him two women are killed every week, on average, and it is extremely uncomfortable attending their funerals and seeing their children, he said:

There are also funerals of men who have died, and I’m sure that’s just as uncomfortable an experience for their children.

Sure – but two ‘wrongs’ don’t make a ‘right’.

And he said the Istanbul Convention makes it

explicitly clear that it’s fine to discriminate against men.

Does it? Does it really, just by saying it isn’t fine to discriminate against women?

No. It’s a non-sequitur. It doesn’t follow that it is fine to discriminate against men, just because it isn’t fine to discriminate against women. Non-discrimination against either is not mutually exclusive. It would be interesting to challenge Mr Davies on which part of the Istanbul Convention suggests this is true.

The Shame of Shipley eventually shut up after speaking for 78 minutes, when a Motion of Closure (bringing a debate to the vote) was passed. At the vote itself, the Bill was approved by 135 votes to two against. This was the Second Reading, which means the Bill will be considered by a Parliamentary committee and the House of Lords before returning to the Commons for a third time.

The government in fact supports the Bill, and 36 Tory MPs voted for it after Mr Davies was finally forced to sit down.

The “morons” on Twitter have been taking their revenge, of course:

Yes indeed. How do the people of Shipley sleep, after having inflicted this multiply-meandering pest on the rest of us?

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