This is a somewhat rushed post and you already know from my other posts that I’m no grammar expert!
Well, Something unbelievable has been going on in the UK this week. Full blown riots. Some may have been predictable due to the amount of cuts, racial tensions and the bleak future people face but it’s still a shock for it to have actually happened.
Let me say what I saw on the streets was terrible. Looting, attacking and setting alight to things is never the answer to anything. However there is a much bigger issue that we as a country have to address and it starts at the top.
Firstly I don’t agree that you can pin what happened in various cities and towns in the UK down to a single issue. Many people just say criminality or school holidays. That’s a ridiculous statement. We have racial tensions (which do exist), police treatment/harassment/perception they can get away with anything. Not all police officers have a nasty side but those who do taint the met. The reason why I will talk about the Metropolitan police is because they police my city and I know the majority police well, however there is still harassment and many complaints when it comes to black people.
I know how controversial this is but this is the case. If you are mixed race or black have a job and a purpose (I.E not going to cause trouble 😛 ) and just happen to wear a Nike tracksuit or such it’s likely your going to be stop searched. I know this it’s happened to me before. I’ve been stop searched. I know how people say well if you have nothing to hide you have nothing to fear. That’s all well.. but do you know how shameful it is being stopped and searched on the side of the road? You hardly ever see a white person stopped and searched in Tottenham. To add to this there are witnesses to police brutality, and yes I say brutality in Tottenham. A family member witnessed a boy being pushed to the ground and kicked by a police office whilst the other was watching. When my family member approached the officer got very aggressive towards her. As they started walking away the boy said “don’t leave me”. There are numerous unconfirmed but possibly very real claims of harassment by the police that still continues 25 years after the Broadwater farm riots. Moving on…
When we say over 50% people in some areas are looking for work and 80% of black people in other areas are looking for work we can see how some people feel they’ve become detached from the rest of the country.
Benefit cuts, False promises, Expenses scandals and short sentences, ridiculous justice system, raise in tuition fees (which were promised to be fixed), Education Maintenance Allowance gone, police cuts, unemployment (it’s near impossible to get a job now) and a general social breakdown. I mean we have mothers that are 15 and 16 now. Their children grow up in a home that feeds off benefits as their parents can’t often work and when they can they seem to become lazy. No doubt due to the fact they been living on the benefits since they got pregnant perhaps? What’s worse is these children may develop a whole new set of social problems. Meaning a whole other generation will be lost! 🙁
There will be a huge divide between those who have got and haven’t got stuff. When we talk about people leaving university with £53,000 worth of debt or more this will deter the less well off. People who have planned and saved for their children will be fine, but people on the council estate who had dreams will think of how they will ever pay that off. Having come from a background where they probably struggle anyway. Lets not even mention the standard of education at university. Which really needs to improve if you are going to charge such elitist prices!
In regards to the shooting of Mark Duggan. It’s strange how this has happened. First we were told he fired at officers then now we here he didn’t and he just had a converted pistol and didn’t fire at all. The bullet that hit the officers radio was said to have been a police bullet. I won’t say any more on this situation other then it looks like the police have some explaining to do on that…
The worst thing about the riots is the racial side that’s been brought up. The EDL (English Defence League) which were labelled as “local residents” acting as vigilantes and forcing rioters back. A lot of people jumped on the bandwagon of blaming black youth or flat out immigrants as the root of all the problems. If this persists this will just happen time and time again. It’s flat out ignorance. When the issue of race is brought up as it is continually (its like a broken record) people feel demoralised and left out 🙁
Unless we solve the real issues going wrong in our society it will happen again and again – Watch this.
Proof the trouble had racial elements too and wasn’t just blind thuggery – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qL_8AjiwtyQ
Edit: A Chinese state newspaper applauds UK stance on blocking users of social networking sites here.