Tuesday 9 August 2011
A Lack Of Respect For Authority
The BBC and Sky News appear to have been in their element the past couple of days having cameras and reporters in various parts of London. Overkill is too kind a word to describe their delight at witnessing violence and their overpowering enthusiasm when they sight a burning vehicle.
Most of the looting and rioting thugs appear to be youths hell bent on causing trouble. It's pathetic to see them goading police and causing destruction to businesses, some of which may not survive due to their actions. Since Saturday night those intent on criminal behaviour have become more and more daring because police seem totally unable to control the situation, even though the numbers involved are tiny in comparison to the demonstrations, which also had their fair share of thugs joining, in London earlier in the year
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, Chancellor, Home Secretary and Lord Mayor were all out of the country on one of their annual holidays, although the Home Secretary, Prime Minister and Boris Johnson have now returned and are meeting to discuss the situation.
The rioting late on Saturday night initially may have been in protest about the shooting of one individual but now it's purely mindless violence organised Blackberry and Twitter. Last night on television I saw young men smashing their way into a business and removing various large items, while the police stood observing a few hundreds yards away. Their hands are tied by the politicians who refuse to use water cannon or rubber bullets in riot situations.
Inspector Gadget says 'we know that elitist governments always bring riots.' An emotive comment, but maybe it has a little truth. One slightly concerning statement he makes is he expects more riots and disorder over the next few years. If police are unable to deal with a few raging youngsters smashing the windows of a small shop, there's little chance they are prepared for further riots. A vast amount of public money is spent on our police service yet it is not meeting the requirements of the majority of the population. Recently I said the police needed reorganisation and that is evidently more urgent than ever.
Eamonn Butler suggests David Cameron's idea of making Bill Bratton the new Commissioner of the Met is inspired and that is another sad reflection upon today's police force, when we can't produce 'home-grown' senior police officers who have enough skills to take charge of London's policing. The evidence shows Mr Bratton turned around crime in New York but would it be acceptable to have an American citizen in charge of the largest police force in Europe?
An accurate description of recent days would be 'a lack of respect for authority'. Is it any wonder people have lost respect for officialdom when fraudulent politicians are given minimal prison sentences while an 85 year old war veteran is given six months for making an audio recording in court? I'm sure most of us can think of plenty other examples of 'justice'.
If David Cameron and his sun-tanned colleagues can't understand the frustrations people feel about secret courts, children being removed from families without good reason, the seriously ill being denied live-saving drugs - to name but a few - small injustices we hear of regularly, then there's no point in any meeting to discuss the present situation in London.
Respect is a two way attribute. When one side shuns the unspoken agreement, as has been gradually happening over the past 20 years, the other side eventually breaks. Hard working, law abiding communities are being destroyed by vicious thugs whose only aim is find cash and alcohol. They have no respect for anyone.