Catching up on yesterday's news yet another story in the media demonstating that not only are local authority officials dictatorial, have a 'box-ticking' mentality plus a nice little 'cash earner' but that the public have been cowed into paying fines that logic dictates are totally wrong.
The story of Stephen Mayes, who left two pots of flowers for a colleague in her parking pay (council owned) and was fined for littering is covered by the Mail and a local newspaper, the Romford Recorder. It was also covered by the Daily Telegraph (no link) who, in the print edition, failed to mention that the parking spaces were council owned - but then omission of that small detail just illustrates the 'slap-dash' standard of journalism for which that paper is fast becoming renowned.
The Concise Oxford Dictionary defines litter as discarded refuse left in a public place and it would have been an intriguing legal debate had this matter gone to court. The Mail article states that Mr. Mayes maintained he had explained to the litter warden the flowers were for a colleague, yet the letter from the council contradicts this so obviously one of the participants in this saga is telling fibs. It is also interesting that, reading between the lines, the litter warden got his 'wrists slapped' for not issuing a ticket for fly-tipping, but instead one for the lesser offence of 'littering' - a factor which once again speaks volumes about local authority mentality!
It really is time that we, the public, should just say 'No'!