London (Sep. 18)
A 49-year-old Jewish furrier was sentenced to 28 days imprisonment today on charges of having obstructed the police at a fascist meeting in a Jewish-populated neighborhood. The officers who made the arrest said that they had not heard the speaker utter any inciting anti-Jewish remarks, although other withnesses had testified to the contrary.
The sentence came on the heels of relatively mild terms imposed yesterday on several fascists. Three received suspended sentences, three were fined and one was given a two-day jail term. The presiding magistrate, Daniel Hopkins, condemned persons entering Jewish districts to provoke disturbances, and said that if court action failed to deter them, some other measures should be taken.
Speaking last night in the Shacklewell Lane Synagogue, in North London, Hopkins told the congregation that “as far as I am concerned, I hold that it is fundamental to keep order for the sake of the people.” A meeting in Hackney, North London, called by the National Council for Civil Liberties, tonight adopted a resolution urging the government to introduce legislation making it illegal to spread fascist and anti-Semitic propaganda. The mayor of Hackney chaired the meeting.
The London press is continuing to press for government action to curb the anti-Semitic provocations. The liberal Evening Star tonight carries an editorial asking that action be taken to halt fascist meetings. It says that Magistrate Hopkins, by his remarks when trying offenders, is foreing the Home Office to a showdown. It adds that Home Secretary James Chuter Ede has “so far taken a curious attitude.” Ede is opposed to legislation curbing anti-Semitic propaganda on the ground that it might infringe on civil liberties.
The Evening Standard writes today that legislation is required to stop the North London meetings, where night after night “racial hatred and persecution is urged in sentences unheard since the living Streicher bestrode a Berlin platform.” It asks why the authorities do not act before the rioting stage is reached.