Polites Force

(Note! This is not an account of actual events!)

Standing in the dark outside Cambridge police station I realised I felt slightly abused by police coercion through manners. Obviously this isn’t the greatest complaint about the cops – I still can’t eat anything acidic after that truncheon to the face – but it struck me as something worth remarking on. The assumption of polite society makes it a bit harder to resist and challenge the way you’re treated. That’s true of any polite atmosphere – it prevents awkward truths and confrontations by ignoring these things (think of any polite dinner or business visit).

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