My sister called me yesterday looking for perspective on all the gnashing of teeth and condemnations over the English riots.
“There are so many haters, racists and folk screaming moral opprobrium into the ether. I feel that they are wrong but I don’t have the facts.”
I thought I’d share the conversation, with you.
Looting is part of this society’s culture. It has always been so.
From the asset stripping of the British Empire (most former colonies, to this day, do not own their natural assets eg. industries like gold, cocoa, palm oil, diamonds, minerals, etc) to the recent looting of Iraq under the smoke screen of ‘Weapons of Mass Destruction‘, looting is an institutionalised part of British identity and psyche.
And it doesn’t stop at the international front door.
- The banks asset-stripped the public purse and looted almost every major country’s treasury in the global economy
- The politicians got caught with their hand in the till through their illegal expenses claims – that’s looting the public purse
- The media looted the phone information of murdered children’s parents for no other reason than that it was profitable
- Tony Blairdrew a veil of secrecy over the BAe £1 billion bribe to Saudi Arabia, ensuring an investigation never took place by slapping it with a ‘Threat to National Security’ label – that’s corruption for profit ie. looting
These are all middle-class, white collar, white person crimes. Does anybody ever ask those same searching questions about poor policing, poor parenting, poor discipline in schools and a general lack of morals, ethics and values?
Of course not. Instinctively, the general public understands that these individuals do not operate alone, but within an institutional framework that encourages and supports individuals who display those gain-seeking tendencies.
And when it all goes tits up, these same supporters will duly call them ‘bad apples and unrepresentative of the whole’, then choose a more moderate leader for a while … in order to passify the baying mob.
White collar crime is usually punished less harshly by the courts than blue collar, or working class crime. The idea being that these are victimless crimes.
The argument is that you can’t point to a particular person who has DIRECTLY suffered from the crime, whereas you can with assault, theft or murder. This is why it is always challenging for the courts to prosecute soldiers who are perpetrating an illegal war but at the same time following orders.
But ask any parent of a child who has been killed in Iraq and they will tell you Blair and Bush should be in jail for the 654,965 deaths they caused.
There will be 100s of youths locked up for criminal damage, breach of the peace, arson and looting but is it anywhere near the scale of what their role models and leaders in society have done?
The white collar criminals are busy huffing and puffing sentiments of moral outrage and bleating with righteous indignation over the mess in the English cities.
But the problem is that they can’t even police their own.
If everybody’s got their hand in the cookie jar, then what’s to stop the most disadvantaged in society?
In Part II, I will share the black perspective on what’s going on, particularly re the scandal of the huge percentage of black people with degrees who are either unemployed or working in menial labour, particularly in Scotland. And ask, What’s Not To Riot Against?