Saturday, 13 August 2011

On the riots in England

Carlos Latuff’s comment on the riots:

Carlos Latuff
Originally posted on his Twitpic account.

And one from Martin Rowson:

Martin Rowson
From his page at the Guardian website.

As for how to interpret the rioting, I side with Russell Brand’s piece in the Guardian:

However “unacceptable” and “unjustifiable” it might be, it has happened so we better accept it and, whilst we can’t justify it, we should kick around a few neurons and work out why so many people feel utterly disconnected from the cities they live in.

Unless on the news tomorrow it’s revealed that there’s been a freaky “criminal creating” chemical leak in London and Manchester and Liverpool and Birmingham that’s causing young people to spontaneously and simultaneously violate their environments – in which case we can park the ol’ brainboxes, stop worrying and get on with the football season, but I suspect there hasn’t – we have, as human beings, got a few things to consider together.

...[A] state of deprivation though is, of course, the condition that many of those rioting endure as their unbending reality. No education, a weakened family unit, no money and no way of getting any. JD Sports is probably easier to desecrate if you can’t afford what’s in there and the few poorly paid jobs there are taken. Amidst the bleakness of this social landscape, squinting all the while in the glare of a culture that radiates ultraviolet consumerism and infrared celebrity. That daily, hourly, incessantly enforces the egregious, deceitful message that you are what you wear, what you drive, what you watch and what you watch it on, in livid, neon pixels. The only light in their lives comes from these luminous corporate messages. No wonder they have their fucking hoods up.

I remember Cameron saying “hug a hoodie” but I haven’t seen him doing it. Why would he? Hoodies don’t vote, they’ve realised it’s pointless, that whoever gets elected will just be a different shade of the “we don’t give a toss about you” party.

Politicians don’t represent the interests of people who don’t vote. They barely care about the people who do vote. They look after the corporations who get them elected...

Why am I surprised that these young people behave destructively, “mindlessly”, motivated only by self-interest? How should we describe the actions of the city bankers who brought our economy to its knees in 2010? Altruistic? Mindful? Kind? But then again, they do wear suits, so they deserve to be bailed out, perhaps that’s why not one of them has been imprisoned. And they got away with a lot more than a few fucking pairs of trainers.

These young people have no sense of community because they haven’t been given one. They have no stake in society because Cameron’s mentor Margaret Thatcher told us there’s no such thing.

If we don’t want our young people to tear apart our communities then don’t let people in power tear apart the values that hold our communities together.

1 comment:

  1. A very alarming trend is being described here. Sad, but true is that not only young people feel this way. Whole societies have been brought to knees by the raging capitalist corporations who do not in the least care about people who they exploit or seduce - what they really care about is ensure that their prodigious profits do not decrease in course of time. It doesn't matter how many lives have been ruined, how many people mislead by false idols (like the Golden calf), how many hopes crashed in vain. All that matters is that they regularly get their bloody money. And the propaganda goes on, justifying this vicious circle of over-promoted lies, ruthless exploitation and moral corruption. "But who is on the blame for the sake of this all?", do everyone asks themselves. And corporations' propaganda finds the most suitable scapegoats so as to calm down people's just indignation. Such upsurges as riots in England are significant because they reveal mournful truths about how a whole system, strikingly (but not surprisingly)similar to some regimes in the past, although everything is nowadays being well-covered by constantly working corporation (and government)propaganda machines. But who should on the blame after all?

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