Tuesday 16 August 2011

Riots and Road Rage

We've all seen the pictures of the violence and looting on the streets of London and other English cities. Shocking wasn't it. The violence, the looting, the loss of control. It makes you realise that society is not as happy or in control as we often like to delude ourselves.

What is most surprising though is....that we are surprised.

What do I mean by that?

Just look at my videos, and the videos of countless other road users (not just cyclists). It doesn't happen every day but, hold up the wrong driver for a few seconds, sit a little further out on the road than someone likes, etc and the red mist descends and road rage soon follows. Just watch the following video as an example (not mine).

The experts are arguing over the cause of the riots. Gang culture, rap music, single parent families etc are all being touted as causes. Perhaps it is a lot simpler than that. Perhaps we see violence as the norm. People know that there is a lot they can get away with without serious consequence. For example the attacker in the above video is only being sought for a public order offence and not for assault. Will that stop him doing similar again in the future?

So should we be shocked by the riots? No. There is violence and aggression on the streets every day. Just not mob violence.

The public outcry over the riots is encouraging the courts to look at stiffer penalties and firmer policing, Great. But where is the outcry for incidents like this? When will the police, and the courts get tough where it is actually needed?

Until then, Joe Criminal will know that he can get away with 'murder' with only a slap on the wrist.

Actually, you can actually get away with murder.....so long as your weapon of choice is a car.......

1 comment:

  1. I found a sound bite from a recent William K Black interview and have transcribed it here:

    "When your most elite most powerful members of society adopt a strategy, of what the famous French economist Frédéric Bastiat called 'plundering', then they will develop a morality that doesn't simply permit plundering but valorises it. Quoting Bastiat, Black said – ‘When that happens the moral structures of society will inevitably deteriorate - in the under classes (of France in 1700’s) that leads to street looting & violence.’ "