Richard Leonard criticises Scottish Labour Students for ‘ACAB’ tweet

Andrew Kersley

Richard Leonard has criticised Scottish Labour Students after the group responded to accusations of police intervention at a Trans Pride event by suggesting that “all cops are bastards”.

The Scottish Labour leader reacted today to the student group’s retweet of a post about a London Trans Pride march, where activists allege police unjustly shut down the event. In their tweet, the account said: “To be clear: ACAB”.

ACAB, which stands for ‘all cops are bastards’, is a slogan used to protest police brutality. It was popularised earlier this year during the Black Lives Matter movement demonstrations.

In a tweet this afternoon, Leonard said: “I utterly condemn the remarks made by Scottish Labour Students. I have family who have served in the police. It was an outrageous statement to make.”

The tweet shared by Scottish Labour Students was originally posted by a candidate running to be Young Labour’s student representative. She said: “Hope everyone at Trans Pride is having a wonderful day! Stay safe and ACAB my loves.”

The students group has since removed its post, tweeting: “We have deleted a prior tweet as it snowballed to itself becoming the story. Its original point was to show support for London Trans Pride attendees in the face of police shutting down the event.

“We are sorry our clumsy use of language obscured the real issue and apologise to our trans comrades who have our support now and always.”

The original tweet was sent on Saturday, shortly after the Trans+ Pride march in London had ended. Activists at the event claimed that the police had unjustly intervened at the rally, cutting the event short.

The event itself was postponed from its original date of September 5th, after police threatened to arrest anyone who took part in the march for breaching lockdown regulations during the pandemic.

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