Everyone’s talking about the riots, condemning the chavs for mindless violence etc.
It seems to me that to dismiss the riots as pure criminality is a bit of a cop-out. The riots are clearly symptomatic of a wider problem with society. Increasing numbers of people are feeling a disconnect between the establishment (the government, companies, shops, whatever) and the people on the street. Peaceful protests have happened regularly in the last few years, and I think the perception of a lot of people is that those protests have been largely ignored and that in some cases the police exercised undue force to control protesters who weren’t really doing very much wrong.
Of course the people who attended the anti-war demo before the Iraq war, and those attending the peaceful “stop the cuts” protests are probably not the same ones who are now terrorising the streets, but the point is the government has created a generalized distrust of the establishment. The police haven’t helped by allowing themselves to be filmed apparently beating innocent protesters during peaceful demonstrations. The kids on the streets now weren’t at those demonstrations, but you can bet their parents and friends probably watched them on the news. What’s happened is that society as a whole has tried to change government peacefully, it failed, and now those with a lower intellect and a penchant for criminal damage and petty theft have taken over. This is what happens when you ignore the people and deal with them using undue force. They will rise up – the police will be outnumbered.
This is why I’m reluctant to support the Met Police – they’ve kinda brought it on themselves, and I kinda do want the government to be made aware that the people are not happy. I wish the moronic thugs would do a better job of voicing the concerns of the populace, and of course I don’t support petty theft and mugging – it’s terrible the destruction that’s being caused, but if someone threw a brick through the window of number 10, I’d probably be cheering them on. Don’t take that to mean I’m on the side of the rioters, I’m not, but I’m sure as hell not on the side of the government or the pigs either.
I’m just on the side of the communities who’ve got together today to start clearing stuff up.
The government bailing out the banks hasn’t gone down well either – it’s seen as the government taking from the poor to give to the rich, and people aren’t happy about it. They’re right not to be.
I’m not blaming it all on the Tories or the Lib Dems either – this is mostly Labour’s fault, the majority of this has built up over Tony’s rein. The Tories have just pushed things over the edge, I think Tony is the one who’s really to blame, for ignoring the people and going to a war nobody wanted.
Here’s some protest songs to accompany the riots:
Here’s a relevant link from the Guardian.