Sunday, 14 August 2011

peace ?

The English uprising appears to be over - for now.

Although it might be a good time to check ebay for plasma TVs and trainers.

We now have news bulletins full of politicians and social commenters giving their views as to what went wrong and what can be done. If you read my last post then you know my opinions on some of the root causes. A friend of mine who is a psychologist actually wrote a really interesting piece about mob mentality and the mindset behind that.

Not that it was ever really any kind of uprising, or even really a riot. It began as a protest over a shooting and escalated into mindless vandalism and a spot of late night shopping.

Uprisings require organising and that takes more brains then most of those involved could ever dream of having, although on several news reports shown of looting youths there were older men directing the youngsters on the rampage.
Telling them which shop windows to put bricks through that is.

I'm inclined to agree with the idea that once it got started there was co-ordination involved. How did it kick off in several big cities all over the country at about the same time on the Sunday night ?
There is talk in the media of blame on social networking for that, but we've had organised protests in this country before we had so much technology - remember the good old fashioned phone. And how the 'word' was spread is not the real issue here, more concerning is where that came from and the mindset of those who decided to act upon it.
It was announced on the news that all police leave was cancelled and that they were being brought into London from elsewhere in the country, I reckon elsewhere in the country decided to take advantage of that situation.

Wish I'd thought of that, I'm off on holiday next week I could do with some new summer clothes.

My fear about all this was that it would be used by the racist scum to add fuel to their pathetic arguments. Even though in every film of what happened that I've seen there were just as many white as black kids involved, probably more white kids in fact and the older men directing them were white, a lot of the media and public focus seemed to fall on the black kids.
And as always happens there have been the usual bout of text jokes doing the rounds and most of them play to the racist tone.

I'm not saying they didn't make me laugh. But I felt suitably ashamed of myself afterwards.

I did see an item on the news about the EDL (big bunch of nazi racists claiming to be patriots) saying they were going to step in and sort out the riots. These losers have done nothing but stir up hate towards moslems and wherever they go the police tend to follow because just their presence is enough to cause problems. No doubt they thought this was their chance to show the public that they are the good guys.
Yeah right.
I wouldn't be surprised if they had something to do with stirring the situation up in the first place.

And as for those that started this chain of events after one young man was shot and killed, they have gained nothing. The death of their friend would probably have remained high on the news agenda, except that now it has been swamped by stories about the riots, court appearances by those involved and political opinions. Questions have been asked in parliament about police funding cuts, nobody is questioning the fact that they shot and killed someone.
If and when the name of that young man gets mentioned in the future it will always be synonymous with the riots. Is that a fitting eulogy for anyone ?

The worst story from all this is of two brothers and a friend who were run down by a speeding car. All three are dead, apparently they and a few other friends were trying to protect their area from looters and from what I can gather it's believed that the car that hit them was being driven by youths that they had earlier chased away.
There was CCTV footage of what preceded and the driver has been arrested.

How appalling that three more young men died as a direct result of what began as a protest about the death of another.
Where is the justice in that.

The father of the two brothers has been on TV appealing for calm and asking that there are no retribution attacks for what happened to his sons and their friend, this was a situation that had potential to escalate into something far worse then looting a few shops. This man, despite the pain and grief he is going through, appears to be becoming the voice of reason for all that has happened and in his own quiet way something of a spokesman for peace.
This man is a Moslem.

I hope that those who have spent the last few years trying to tell the world that Islam is full of terrorists who want nothing but war are watching.

Anyway it appears we don't need suicide bombers to destroy our cities.
Just send in the chavs.

Getting back to the jokes that have been doing the rounds...

One of my friends tried to tell me a joke about looters and water cannons, she began it by saying "Cameron has agreed the police can use water pistols . . . "
I didn't hear the rest of the joke because I was too busy laughing at the picture in my head of police with these. . . . .

Yup ! That'll scare them off.


  1. Excellent essay by your psychologist friend. Humans are not much different from baboons when they assemble in a mob. They need to be coralled and branded like livestock.

  2. Really interesting. I hope that England works on the social roots of this and doesn't ignore the causes.

  3. Spam Spam Spam Spam Spam!!!!

    So BIN ME!!!!


  4. @GB, I think there might also be an argument there in favour of castration.
    @Mike, me too.
    @Sky, no - I'm publishing so deal with it.

  5. I'm pleased to read I'm not the only one who found humour in the reporting of this tragic incident... I am currently in Australia and on the news here a reporter asked a 'looter' if he had trouble sleeping at night and how did he feel when he climbed into bed. The kid replied "I feel great coz I get to watch tv on my new plasma." Haha! I pissed myself laughing at that but, then felt a bit ashamed.

    Great story, DCG, thanks. :)

  6. dirty!!! you have fireworks!!! not good for the brain injured ... took me twice as long to get through your blog today and i think i missed a paragraph here and there lol!

    what i did get out of it though, is how heart wrenching it is to see people of your country not have any pride in their home.

    no ... you don't need terrorists now ... they're just sitting back smiling b/c their job is done by the locals :(

  7. @Vee, I would've laughed at that too - but then it's supposed to be the best medicine.
    @Andrea, Sorry - I'll take them off if they disturb you :) The worst thing is the looters really don't represent most English people but thanks to them that's the reputation we'll get.

  8. I think because of the smaller geographic size of the UK compared countries like the US, China, USSR, etc. These types of things have far more "close to home" impact. I hope it is over and you can enjoy your holiday.

  9. I think the most disturbing aspect of a disturbing essay (not your fault it's disturbing) is the EDL. This sounds like a scary, scary group. I haven't heard anything about it.
    As bad as these things are, the perception they leave is what causes a lot of damage. For instance, the city of Philadelphia has experienced some "flash mob" violence. The result is that NO WAY would I take my family downtown (even though it's a relatively safe place).
    We live in some interesting times......

  10. A person by themselves - intelligent. Reasonable.

    People in large groups - idiots. Throw some anger into that big group, and you've got a surefire mess.

  11. @Chuck, yeah that's a very good point. And thanks.
    @Al, they are vile and in the aftermath of 9/11 and the london bombings they gained some momentum too. They tried to have a 'march' in my town a while ago - their supporters arrived by train and were met at the station and 'escorted' by police. I'm happy to say that the crowd of locals who were protesting against them being here was bigger then them.
    @Beer. Indeed, the lowest common denominator wins,


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