This is from the Mercury Opinion column in today's Leicester Mercury:
Ignore this rabble and their march
The English Defence League are an organisation that we have no time for. They are an organisation that revels in causing divisions within our community. We frankly also have grave misgivings about those individuals that align themselves to this fringe group.
It is, therefore, with some trepidation that we report today that the EDL are apparently organising a march through Leicester city centre to the war memorial, in Victoria Park, to lay a wreath in memory of Drummer Lee Rigby, who was brutally murdered on the streets of Woolwich last week.
As everyone will remember, one previous demonstration by this rabble ended in violence that effectively closed our city centre on a busy Saturday.
On a second occasion, an excellent police operation kept disruption down to a minimum.
The soldier's death was indeed truly shocking and horrific, but it has nothing to do with this neo-political outfit.
The EDL, as they did on the night of Drummer Rigby's death, are simply seeking to exploit his murder for their own questionable ends.
We understand that this weekend's event is part of a series of marches and wreath-layings across the country.
It is expected to be small-scale and involve only local members and will not be the national EDL events, as was the case on previous occasions.
We would ask that opponents of the EDL, which should frankly be us all, ignore this event and that no-one mounts rival demonstrations.
Let the police do their job, marshal the event and get this group off our streets as quickly as possible.
Rival protests, however well meaning, simply play into the hands of these extremists and help them spread their intolerant and ill-founded message.
If the EDL had any credibility, they would simply go about their wreath-laying in private and mark Drummer Rigby's death in a dignified and solemn manner.
Instead, they choose to publicise their demonstration in the hope of promoting divisions within our community. We have a message for them – it won't work.