Isn't that a snappy title!
This semester I’m studying, for my Dip Ed, units on Education and Social Justice, and on Classroom Behaviour Management. I’m reading articles by specialists in those areas, who, in ideology and ideas, are saying things similar to the experts who have been commenting on the UK riots. The causes and possible solutions. So, I’m pretty full of theories this week. Theories such as:
Welfare makes people lazy, and gives them a sense of entitlement. We need to cut welfare and provide stronger law enforcement.
People feel they have no investment in their own communities. There is no hope for their future. They don’t care. How can we give them reasons to care?
The gap between rich and poor is growing. It is only natural that the poor will rebel. The poor see the big salaries paid to people who don’t deserve it and are resentful. They know it isn’t fair.
We need to bring in compulsory military service.
It is caused by the breakdown of the family.
The riots are symptomatic of loss of the power of the church in society.
We do young people no favours by keeping them in school until they are seventeen - it weakens the education system for everyone. If we can’t provide traineeships or apprenticeships, lets look to fast food chains to teach young people how to work.
Everyone has the right to an education. Everyone in society is valued and should be heard and should be catered for.
This is another indicator that capitalism is failing. We advertise consumer goods to everyone, telling the population that they need these things to be valued/attractive/worthwhile, so if people can’t afford to buy these things they’ll just steal them.
The riots are the result of police picking on people for no reason.
These people need support. Pulling funding for community programs was the last straw.
If you measure the success of a society by how the most vulnerable are treated, the riots are a symptom of a sick society.
We need greater taxing of the rich to help the poor.
The rioters and looters couldn’t even explain why they rioting and looting - it was sheer opportunism. They’re thugs.
With rights come responsibilities.
In order to learn people need to understand why they are being taught, and then make their own meaning.
Everyone needs to feel part of a community. Everyone needs to feel life has some purpose.
It’s all about power.
The most vulnerable or marginalised people need more support.
People in authority need to be consistent, fair and equitable.
The riots show how precariously our society holds together. The pretence of civilisation is a thin veneer.
This morning I picked up a copy of The Australian at the doctor’s waiting room (Banjo has tonsillitis) (they publish a column bagging the ABC and SMH, and I’m not sure why I’m surprised...) and found this:
YOU are right, of course, Ros Kidd (Talking Point, 13-14/8). But nor was it the rioting youths or their parents who implemented the education and social policies which led, at least in part, to the unrest.
For that, you must point the finger at the moronic Left-leaning postmodernist social-deconstructionists in charge of the asylum. I wager that these misguided people, almost to a person, read and absorbed Michel Foucault and Jacques Derrida with unmitigated glee.
Graeme Osborne, Southern River, WA
Well, that would be me and most people I know. It’s our fault. People thinking, or being compassionate, is the problem.
All depends on your ideology, which could do with some challenging. That’s what the UK riots are doing. Challenging our ideologies.
By the way, The Guardian Weekly put the story of the UK riots on page 12 of a 48 page edition. The lead story was on how India and China’s criticism of the US’s handling of their debts could be the tipping point of the transfer of global power from the USA to Asia.