My dad is a grumpy skin at the best of times, but watching the coverage of the riots on the news has made him even more grumpy than usual. He sat there shaking his head and muttering “what has happened to my country?”
Growing up he was no angel, so I hear; he was never averse to getting into trouble but he was never a bad skin. It was a bunch of lads who would go out at night and have a punch-up with another bunch of lads from a neighbouring estate. At no time did any of them smash windows, steal cars, mug anyone, rob houses or attack any “non-combatant”. It was just kids stuff, nobody ever got hurt. Their favourite part was probably running and hiding when the police turned up. Boys will be boys after all.
He watches the news now in disbelief at the rampage that is unfolding on Britain’s streets. This isn’t kids stuff, although the great majority should be at home, tucked up in bed. Their parents don’t know where they are or what they’re doing and, I guess, don’t really care.
Dad has never argued against direct action if it has a legitimate political motive, with defined and justifiable ends. This does not include rioting, damaging the property of skins who have worked their whole lives to get it, property destroyed by stupid skins who have never worked a day in their lives. These riots that are spreading like a rash across this country are not politically motivated though, it is motivated by greed and a lust for criminality that can in no way be excused by community leaders bleating a pale defence: “oh the poverty and deprivation, the police this, the government that…..” Yes there are problems for young people to face but there always have been. There is no excuse.
This has been coming since the 80’s, the “greed is good” culture telling us that we can never be satisfied with what we’ve got. The dismantling of heavy industry and manufacturing has meant the end, in some areas, of community life and spirit.
The lack of parenting skills are evident as parents who don’t give a damn issue kids who give even less of a damn. A downward spiral. The lack of discipline at home and in the schools mean the kids are growing up wilder every year as they seek to outdo each other as criminals. Their only role models being these so-called plastic “gangstas” on MTV, glorifying violence and assuring them that the only way to get “respeck” is by being the worst, most inhumane thug possible.
A downward spiral that coincided with the decision to end corporal punishment in schools and at home, they will do what the hell they want because there is nobody who can do a thing to stop them.
Where will it end dad?