Wednesday, 10 August 2011

The Riots - An ex-Mayor gives his take

"It's obvious to anyone (such as myself) who knows a thing or two about the citizens of the capital city as well as of this country, and especially the young citizens moreover, that this outbreak of violence we're seeing around the country is due to the vicious cuts perpetrated by this coalition government. Just because these cuts haven't actually had any impact yet is neither here nor there. It's the prospect of these cuts having an impact that is worrying young people and getting them onto the streets to protest, burn down buildings and steal plasma televisions and Adidas running shoes.

"When I was Mayor, I increased police resourcing and police numbers to an enormous extent. And you can see the beneficial effects this has had in recent months and years. You only need to think of the G8 protests or talk to the people of Tottenham to realise how successful my policing policy was. For example, the people of Tottenham absolutely love the police (or at least the ones I was responsible for putting there) and their rioting in recent days was not an example of their hatred of those policemen and policepersons, but rather their contempt for Boris Johnson who is more interested in attending black-tie dinners than caring for ordinary people.

"But there is another important matter here. And that is the one of respect. And by that I mean respect for drunk alcoholic young people. Over recent years, the young have become increasingly frustrated by the fact that when they fall out of pubs and clubs and start beating the crap out of people, the police show them no respect. This was evidenced the other day by one young inebriated lady in Hackney who said: "If the police doesn't show us no respect, then why should we show them any?" And I have to say that this fine lady with her no-nonsense attitude has a fair point.

"And the reason is this: People don't rape and pillage just because they want to, just because it brings them some kind of gain (although I have to admit that I wouldn't say no to a 42" plasma TV screen were I in Ealing the other night.) NO! They do it because they know that when everyone else is doing it, they’d be a fool not to.

"Do you think that, back in the dark ages, the Vikings raped and pillaged for some kind of arbitrary gain? Do you think the Vikings did it because they wanted to engage in some kind of drunken criminality where they all hoped they could go back to Denmark with sacks full of plasma TVs (assuming they had plasma screens in those days)?

"No! They did it because they felt frustrated by the lack of opportunity on their home turf. They were angry that the powers that be had no respect for their brutal, thuggish, drunken behaviour, which to some could be considered quite admirable in many ways. They, like all young greedy drunken yobbish people needed to let off steam now and again and gain the respect that they deserved.

"And last but not least, the Vikings came over here and raped and pillaged because, let's face it, they were totally and completely sick of the territorial ambitions and the dreams of empire that the ancient Britons possessed - even though they had no empire back then. But they would go on to rule the world. And with this in mind, they decided to teach the arrogant British a lesson.

"So, next time you see young persons engaged in drunken, wanton violence, spare a thought for the Vikings, and ask yourself this: Is what they are seeking nothing more than a bit of respect?”

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