Oi Stephen Hawkins

Was shouted at me as I went through Leeds centre on Saturday night in my electric wheelchair, as I was on the way to meet to meet my friends . Something clicked and I decided to go after this guy whilst deciding whether to plough in to him or just remonstrate. I caught up with him and asked him what the hell he just said . At the same time four transport police officers were going past and became involved. We were both spoken to and was pleased to realise how seriously they took it , taking my details and asking if I wanted to have him charged as a hate crime. I told the officers I would settle for an apology which he offered and we shook hands . With hindsight I wished I’d asked him why he said it etc etc and hope he may not say that to someone else after this. Impressed by the police response but still can’t stop thinking that I should have ridden into him . Got my first insight into being a "minority ". Been in my wheelchair for 5 yrs and this is my first bad incident . There are some idiots out there

Ps I think he only apologised due the police presence

Good for you. Probably as well you didn’t ram him. But it’s a sod when you think of the most useful question too late.


Good for you for going after him, which does take guts and put you at risk of being hurt.

Glad you didnt plough into him, as then you would`ve been up on a charge yourself!

And it`s good to know the police took it seriously.

Never mind, maybe the oaf will trip on a banana skin and rupture his stupid self!


ps you`re a Boudica like me! are you male or female?

surely it was hardly a hate crime.

Might he have meant it as a compliment?

Are you taking the #### ? Do you think I would have gone after him if I thought he was complementing me on my intelligence?

1 Like

Hawking not Hawkins

Hi , male

Apologies for my tone . Should have educated instead . This is what the CPS say- Feeling and being unsafe through violence, harassment or negative stereotyping has a significant impact on disabled people’s sense of security and wellbeing. It also impacts significantly on their ability to participate both socially and economically in their communities. The CPS takes disability hate crime seriously.

of course it was a hate crime…who would say something as a compliment…



Thanks I couldnt make it out by your username.

Ok so you`ll have to be a male Boudica equivalent.

I`d be delighted to ride along with you…chariot to chariot!


Hawking is a gifted individual and i wouldn’t mind being compared to him, if on the basis of intellectual capacity… which of course is not something a lout on the street is going to be considering.

I think the term ‘hate crime’ is a bit strong… but as terms go, it is the best thing we have at the moment… (lol) It is certainly an intended slur based upon discrimination and one that is intended to hurt not help. As such, it is an anti-social act and one that ought to be policed. It is good to hear that such is not deemed too trivial by law enforcement.

Ultimately, the lout in question is no doubt a sensitive soul, who either cares or has cared about someone who is less than able, or is someone who is deeply concerned about becoming disabled themselves (for whatever reason). Basically the unwarranted outburst was a ‘deflection’ to undermine their own neuroses.

It is clear that such a person would lack the courage to venture outside if reliant upon a wheelchair to do so, and with such a lack of character, stronger individuals should pity the poor fool. Consequently, i am glad that no ramming was required during this altercation.

Good for you!


We have to be careful not to adjudge the seriousness or otherwise of an incident by the response it gets. The involvement of 4 transport police officers suggests it was a serious crime.

It wasn’t!

And it wasn’t a hate crime.

Did being compared to Stephen Hawking really make you feel unsafe or impact on your ability to participate socially or economically in your community?

No problem with the OP finding it objectionable but no crime was committed.

They happened to be passing. It is treated as a hate crime . Contact your mp or the police if you don’t consider it so but do not belittle it to me , especially as you were not there and you have not travelled the same Ms journey as me .

1 Like

I could have used some of your good points with him !

1 Like

this might be the salient element of your own post, when attempting to experience empathy for the OP.

the lout’s comment was aired, in possibly a hostile tone, in an obnoxious and very public fashion, to elicit a negative response from the target of the comment. with the under current of malice required to motivate such an effort, whilst it might seem hypersensitive to an unaffected bystander, it is reasonable to deem this act hateful.

this is simple definition. comments such as the one being discussed are unprovoked and unreasonable and are designed to isolate and marginalise members of your community.

1 Like

Hi Schoey,

I am sorry this happened to you. I would have been angry also but I find your last comment to Krakowian slightly strange about him not travelling the same MS journey as you… I’m unsure if you’re implying that he/she has not encountered any difficulties as you undoubtedly have but with respect, he/she may have experienced an even worse Ms journey. We simply don’t know.

Maybe I’ve interpreted it wrong and I don’t mean to cause any offence but I just found it a bit disconcerting.

Kind regards


name calling is the first stage of bullying.

then accidentally (?) barging into you

then flushing your head down the toilet

1 Like

Hi , not at all and would apologise if that’s how it came across. We all have different symptoms etc. I just feel that like many , the problems I’ve had such as bladder and bowels whilst I’m out and about and then some idiot makes a remark like that can affect you. It may not affect someone else …we’re all different.

1 Like