After four days of rioting in England, the finger pointing to the cause of the civil unrest is beginning its task of focussing on the culprits. Meanwhile the politicians have been forced to return from their vacations and parliament has been recalled for tomorrow (Thursday 11th August). Some of the BBC senior journalists have had to come back as well, in case their juniors upstage them on such critical matters.
These riots which started off in Tottenham in north London, spread very quickly throughout south London and into the prosperous areas such as Ealing and Clapham. The hand-wringing has started in earnest; the London Mayor is being challenged by Ken Livingstone for his policy regarding the policing of the city; many key figures in the coalition government have obviously been caught napping, and with Nick Clegg apparently in charge, the authority of parts of Britain were challenged by a bunch of teenage thugs who started to riot, smash and grab whatever Blackberry plasma TV, trainers, watches, and anything they could sell under the nose of the police, whose senior officers also happened to be on vacation. It seemed as if the entire authority of the British Government had decided to take a 2 week nap and the ‘yoof’ had decided to take them on in a violent orgy of destruction and ‘criminality’. At one point the cry went out: why don’t we hear from the <insert name of religious leader here>?
Lord Obreption wishes it to be known that following our inter-faith discussions, we have decided that during Ramadan we would all enjoy God’s grace and have a prolonged vacation, in keeping with our obedience to God’s Holy Law. For Christians, a month of Sundays has been dictated, and following Trinity Sunday we have been noticeable by our absence. In fact many Christian bloggers have been quiet.
With the Arab Spring having reached an indifferent summer and an approaching autumn with no resolution in Libya or Syria, our Islamic experts have decided to follow the traditions of Ramadan and await the joys of the forthcoming Eid. In common with our like-minded members, we refuse to be drawn into a cultural condemnation of those who have been taking part in riots in London, Manchester, Salford, Nottingham, West Bromwich, but would note that Mr Salmond has said that Scotland has remained trouble free and should not be lumped with the UK. Allan Massie in today’s Scotsman draws parallels between rioting and football hooliganism and opines that perhaps the absence of rioting in Scotland might be attributable to “The Old Firm”. He might have a point, given that the Scottish Football season has already started and may well be providing an alternative channel for pent-up testosterone. Also, the school hols will be coming to an end shortly.
“There are pockets of our society that are not just broken, but are frankly sick.” David Cameron
Ps: No, I do not intend to return early from my holiday in Tuscany!