About a month ago my oldest son, 13, was confronted by a group of kids he barely knows on his way home from spending the afternoon with his friends. The kids called him racist names and two girls in the group slapped him repeatedly. They then followed him home and stood outside calling him horrible names and threatening him.
I mention it here because recently in the British media there has been a big thing about the police not taking this kind of “anti social behaviour” seriously enough. I’ve asked myself if I agree with this sentiment. Eventually I decided that I don’t.
I am the first person to bitch about Britain. Here in Britain communication is a dirty word (You ever get the feeling you’re supposed to be doing something, but you have no idea what? Welcome to life in Britain.), customer service is an evil American idea to be feared, and if the government interfered in daily life any more, it would be sleeping in your bed with you. But on this issue of anti social behaviour, I find it difficult to blame the cops.
When I reported the incident with my son, there were lights and sirens, and cops here within 10 minutes, despite me saying it wasn’t necessary, the kids had run off. They took it very seriously, we had to take my son to a safe house to make a video statement on a Sunday morning and at the beginning there were 5 officers assigned to it, that I knew of. Now there is one officer, she calls me twice a week to update me, and all save one of the kids has been arrested and questioned. When there was a further incident with one of the slappy twins, she came out to the house the day after I reported it to talk to my son and get all the information.
The investigation is still being completed so I don’t know what the outcome will be, but so far I have to say the police have been stellar, giving it their attention, taking it seriously, making sure it isn’t just ignored.
British media loves to blame someone. It needs a name in its huge, screaming, red headlines. It doesn’t normally care whose name that it. But, after the sheer amount of anti social behaviour I and my kids have experienced, and what I’ve seen reported in the media- I think Britain needs to realise that big red headlines, blame, or throwing money at a problem doesn’t fix it. The people who live here need to have a rethink about their own values, and what they’re teaching their kids. Maybe it’s an apathetic society which is at fault. Happy to blame others, but never wanting to look in the mirror and make changes to what it sees.