Wednesday, 10 August 2011

A time for peace

If our youth are "seen as scum then they act like scum". This was one forthright explanation for the recent riots by a Salford mother. This was certainly one of the explanations for the misbehaviour of football fans in the 1970s and there may be something in it. This may not be a popular view and it is much more likely that you hear about criminals on the street. However the lady on the news was overheard by a gentleman who felt that just because the local youth have nothing, "it doesn't give them the right to smash things up". I am sure that there is a lot of support for this view but not from the lady who was being interviewed. He also felt that "young kids who are unemployed and have nothing to do so let's go and smash some shops up". The lady was angry and felt that it was this man's "ignorance that makes kids do what they do".

Another lady was even more angry at those who had blamed parents. She claimed there were 10,000 people in that area on the previous night and they were not kids. She was interrupted by a supporter of riots shouting "let's have a riot" It seems that he can't get a job because foreigners are coming in to do the jobs that he could do. I wonder if there are any other explanations. The reporter responded by saying that nobody would invest in areas where riots take place to which he replied "that's up to them isn't it".

There may have been a genuine cause for concern that started the riots. If there was then it has long been forgotten. It is obvious that we have people rioting because they are criminals. Less obvious is the motive of those who are rioting for other political reasons. This is not the time to question motives. This is not the time to interpret the role of parents or investigate whether portions of our society view themselves as "scum". It is certainly not the time to wonder if our collective ignorance (not that of one man in Salford) causes the riots. It is time to condemn the riots and to call for peace.

Change the world


  1. It's good to see you back.
    I am sure that for every theory as to why there are riots, there are many reasons