09 August 2011

I wonder to myself; could life ever be sane again?

This blog has been roused from its six month slumber to ponder over the immense stupidity of the current riots in the country that I happen to call home.

Now, I'm no nationalist, not one bit. I do not love my country nor do I think it is the best in the world. It is merely the place where I was born and raised. Now I am lucky that my birthing and raising occurred in a developed country tha promotes the freedom of its citizens (or at the very least pretends to).

Now I'm not from London, nor am I of an ethnic minority, and like a lot of people I'm not aware of all the facts surrounding the shooting of Mark Duggan (suspected cocaine dealer) by the police. As I write this I'm only aware that some reports state that a bullet found lodged in a police radio from the drug raid in which Mr Duggan died, does not match the ammunition used by the police, but I do not know for certain if this means Duggan shot a police officer or not.

On the 6th of August family and friends of Mr Duggan numbering somewhere close to 200 engaged in a peaceful protest march to demand justice for his family. After the peaceful protests however, the riots began. Now, I do not understand rioting in Britain in the last few years. Historically I can understand it, take the Poll Tax riots, which railed against a wholly unfair tax proposed during a time of mass unemployment that favoured the wealthy and discriminated everyone else. To engage in violence on the cusp of such a tax being enacted in a last-ditch attempt to display the level of dissatisfaction with the government is perfectly understandable to me, the cause was just.

If we look to the current riots, I cannot see any justification for them. 'We're smashing shit up and looting in our own town to... umm... it's... it's.' It's theft is what it is. These riots have no agenda, there is nothing to be gained at all (except stolen electronics). While many would like to claim connection to the death of Mr Duggan, the actions undertaken with regards to looting do not bear this out. Others involved are claiming that they are rioting in protest against police persecution of minority groups. To me this sounds like a hurried attempt at justifying wanton destruction. It'a a rather clever excuse in that any footage of police defending themselves, or engaging in the use of force to quell rioters will be used as evidence of further persecution of ethnic minorities. Whereas the fact is that not everyone in North London is rioting and looting right now. There are innocent people trapped indoors and afraid to leave in case they become embroiled in the fucking carnage being wrought by groups of small-brained morons.

What seems most idiotic to me is that the rioters are looting from their own areas, smashing up local businesses, buses etc. It puts me in mind of that scene from Four Lions in which Barry (part of an Islamic terrorist cell) suggests suicide bombing the local Mosque in order to radicalise moderate Muslims to their cause. Rightly so, Omar compares this to punching yourself in the face during a fight. Barry then claims that sometimes you have to punch yourself in order to 'go mental' and win the fight.

That's what the rioters are doing, they're punching themselves in the face, hard.

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