"Where else would you go when you have an ax to grind?"

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Anarchy in the U.K.

Some thoughts and links on the riots across England:

"Most of the people who will be writing, speaking and pontificating about the disorder this weekend have absolutely no idea what it is like to grow up in a community where there are no jobs, no space to live or move, and the police are on the streets stopping-and-searching you as you come home from school. The people who do will be waking up this week in the sure and certain knowledge that after decades of being ignored and marginalised and harassed by the police, after months of seeing any conceivable hope of a better future confiscated, they are finally on the news. In one NBC report, a young man in Tottenham was asked if rioting really achieved anything: 

"Yes," said the young man. "You wouldn't be talking to me now if we didn't riot, would you?"

"Two months ago we marched to Scotland Yard, more than 2,000 of us, all blacks, and it was peaceful and calm and you know what? Not a word in the press. Last night a bit of rioting and looting and look around you."
Eavesdropping from among the onlookers, I looked around. A dozen TV crews and newspaper reporters interviewing the young men everywhere ‘’’

Everyone will quite rightfully decry the violence, looting and mayhem washing over the U.K., and they are right to be shocked. But anyone who is surprised that there is suddenly social unrest in a developed country in which the disparities in wealth distribution and opportunities have  been steadily growing while youth culture has become centered around consumerism, heavy binge drinking and enforced idleness among vast swathes the underclass, where the moral authority of the police has been steadily eroded by the constant drip of corruption, racism, brutality and abuse of power, where the wealthy political class has coddled the upper middle class and thrown the rest of the population to the dogs --- anyone who is surprised simply hasn't been paying attention.

crossposted to the Galloping Beaver


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