Traditionally, the role of the police was to protect individuals from crime and disorder. Today, they not only stand accused of restricting free speech and free assembly by arresting tweeters and kettling protestors, but seem inept at dealing with public order situations. During the riots 2 years ago, with police failing to provide basic security, even the pro-police Tories denounced their ‘timid’ response. In other areas of life, however, the police seem to be reaching far beyond their historic brief, arresting football fans for singing offensive chants or issuing on-the-spot fines for dropping cigarette butts. Filmed at the non-‘PC’ Battle of Ideas.