After writing my post ‘The problem with politics is it doesn’t understand human behaviour’, I’ve been thinking even more about the Riots, as I’m sure many others of you have done as well. I was mainly making the point in my post that it is psychologically detrimental to give people benefits for no fair exchange and how important it is to take responsibility for what is ours to do (and not for what is someone else’s).
Since then I’ve been thinking about the arguments posed by people about how hard it is for kids from deprived areas who have ‘no hope’. There is definitely some truth in this. Every creature needs a purpose, it is what keeps us going and keeps us alive. Even young babies enjoy putting the washing in the machine because it gives them a sense of being useful. We had a rescue dog that came to life when he learnt to ‘work’ (he was on lone to a working kennel and ended up staying there). I’ve thought back to the times in my life when I didn’t have a clue about what I was doing and where I was going, and I agree it felt awful. They were black times.
This is in no way the full answer as we now know that a huge pile of the rioters were nothing to do with this group of young kids, they were just people out to take advantage of a situation, with little moral thought, who thoroughly enjoyed the frenzy and excitement. However, it would be unwise to cut funding on programs that can educate kids on what is available and the opportunities that are there for them. Plus programs that help them work out what they are good at and gives them directions would be great.
I was sent this youtube video after my previous post, and I think it is great. (For my kindle readers, it’s called ‘Keep Britain safe, every individual counts’).
Ironically though in the balance to the lack of purpose in these kids, there was a huge creation of purpose in the people who got together to clean up the streets. How amazing was that? We need to capitalise on this, in order to bring back the sense of community. I have always had a ‘bigger plan’ for ‘the mummy whisperer’. It makes me wonder whether I should kick it off now, rather than later when I’m better known?
Then there are the people who just took advantage of the situation. What to do about them? Well partially make going against society’s rules much harsher so that people wouldn’t consider it. Plus make sure that we do something about people who we know have done something ‘wrong’. Shop the benefit cheats. Stop turning a blind eye to stuff. In a way, it is us that let them think they could get away with it. If they don’t have the same values as us, we can’t force them to be sypathetic, empathetic or thoughtful of those around them. But we can make the price of breaking other people’s property too high for them to do it!
What worries me most is that I suspect that there is another, smaller, quieter group of people. I don’t think that they were lacking in purpose. I think that their whole sense of purpose is to create chaos and anarchy, and that the young people without hope, the criminals, and the middle class people wanting something for nothing, were just pawns for them. I wonder if I am a bit paranoid? But after the deaths of those kids shot in Norway and that mad man’s talking about his connections, it makes me think. This is another reason why we need to not be ‘ignorant’. We might be ‘educated’, but it’s easy to ‘ignore’ what is going on around us.