Law and language: a superb example of a speech that respects both

The proper, respectful and skillful use of language is an indispensable element in respecting and preserving the rule of law.  Few have that gift.  I think  David Davis is one of the few who does.  You can judge for yourself by going over to another superb post by Glenn Greenwald at Salon.com. Scroll down until you get to the YouTube clip of Davis’ speech.  The title of Greenwald’s post, “British debate highlights the cravenness and complicity of Congressional Democratic “leaders,” while having a legitimate edge to it, is not how I would have put and is not the reason I am recommending the post, although it is well worth reading as Greenwald’s posts always are even if one disagrees with him.

Davis is a Tory MP representing Haltemprice and Howden.  Yesterday, in a speech that he was not allowed to make in Parliament (my guess is that was a fair ruling under Parliament’s rules, but that is just a guess), Davis announced his decision to resign his seat and to force a by-election to challenge the government’s curtailing of fundamental liberties in order to increase public safety and to protect against terrorism.  Astonishingly and significantly, the liberal democrats have announced they will not run against Mr. Davis, foregoing a chance to capture the seat he is resigning from in favor of supporting his stand in defense of basic liberties. 

Davis acknowledged that he may have given his last speech in Parliament; that he may lose the by-election.  But he believes it important to give his constituents a choice on fundamental questions of British liberties.  For that he is willing to risk his political career and an opposition party is willing not to take advantage of a major opportunity.  

Davis and the liberal democrats are exercising a type of political freedom that may not exist anywhere else.  Put another way, maybe their belief in fundamental British liberties will turn out to match that of their constituents.