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We want to get to the heart of street weapons. Why do young people carry knives and guns?

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47 Responses

  1. Its Not About Where Your From. Its Not About What Colour You Are. How Old You Or How Hard You Are.

    If You Carry A Knife Your A Weakness To Me.
    Having A Weapon Means Your Week.

    I Pity All People Who Carry A Knife Or Threaten People With A Knife. I Don’t Need To Fight With A Knife I Don’t Need To Fight With A Gun Or A Weapon Of Any Sort.

    My Weapon = Fists

    I Would Rather Fight Going Down Knowing I Didn’t Use A Weapon Than Them Going Down Because I Used One.

    The Difference Between A Man And A Kid?

    A Man Can Fight With His Head An Body

    A Kid Can Fight With Only His Mouth An Weapon

    What Are You ?

    I Would Like To Get Involved In This Topic Alot More. Please Get In Touch. [email removed]

  2. I ‘got involved’ by chance after being tragically caught up with a fatal stabbing in April 2005 at a McDonalds restaurant, Chichester, West Sussex. To have someone fade away, die in my arms, from a brutal stabbing motivated me to set up a blog – http://www.knifecrime.blogspot.com – which has now been read by many thousands of people. I’m not pretending to be an expert campaigner… I just want to highlight knife crime in all its ugliness, and various resources available on the web that can help inform the debate to cure this scourge of UK society.

    Do look at my blog – http://www.knifecrime.blogspot.com

    I greatly hope the blog and this Channel4 initiative are instructive to the Street Weapons Commission.

    Things have gotta change – for the better. Fighting knife crime needs carefully considered, appropriate action, education and communication, as intelligently composed and executed as possible.

  3. I haven’t had any experiences with knifes or anything of that matter (personally) but i’ve witnessed others in those positions, infact I see it quite alot, I know why these youths carry weapons and so on but obviously I don’t approve of it; seeing as I would never do so myself. It’s not only about fear and so, you would have to know about the past of gangs and so on in the UK befor eyou make that analogy, it really angers me when all these “experts” define why they think children are doing this, when they are 100% wrong. Ask a child why and then you’ll find your answer. It could range from fear; being weak and unpopular, you would have no other form of protection, influence from peers and “olders” (olders are those much older than you, who protect you, provide all sorts etc); both can be very infuential amongst youths today, having someone who everyone fears protecting you makes you big-headed and fearless, so in their minds, why not show everyone what your all about by carrying weapons. Lack of parental guidance, im sorry to say but parents need to control their kids these days, they have the power & right to search through their childrens things, so why not? Fair enough it might cause a family fued, but im sure most would agree that a life is more important than a little quarrel. The list goes on, youths today carry weapons for all sorts of reasons and will continue doing so for a very long time; as poilce are cracking down things are getting worse. Police need a whole new stratergy and approach to all of this, otherwise they can expect more violence etc.

  4. We lost our son ,brother ,uncle, friend in March last year to knife crime , gang attack when walking home from a night out. unless you`ve been through something like that its hard to understand .its ripped the family apart and we are all waiting to die so we can be a family again .We lost our direction in life but cling to the hope we can make a difference and raise awareness of the devastation knives can do.soft sentencing is not always the answer the youth who killed lewis was on electronic tag and had no regard for the law with 25 arrests and 11 convictions he breached his tag from the moment it was put on going around in a gang looking for victims. Review the services, have 24hour immediate affect not 24 days when tags are breached ,if prisons are full and community sentencing is the answer lets make sure its working and effective The judge and coroner in our sons case critisised the system .Police need more power over tagged offenders . That said all lewis` friends are committed to raising awareness and campaigning against knife crime and the affects on families,friends and communities working with local youth groups and selling wristbands inscribed with knives-ruin-lives ruffian 2007 Lewis was well known for his music and his love of football so we run a local sunday league team in his name and support local music groups just a small thing that helps everyone who knew Lewis keep his memory alive .

  5. I’m very glad that finally people are demanding something is done about knife and gun crime. My partner lost her only son when he was stabbed to death in Islington in 2006. He was 22 years old, and was working in a music recording studio helping disadvantaged young people explore their creative talents (the details are on the website).

    This was why we set up the Flavasum Trust – to use music and other creative activities to raise awareness amongst young people of the terrible consequences of carrying weapons on the street.

    We’re only a small Trust, and reliant on donations, but we want to do as much as we can to stop these deaths. That’s why we’ve joined Through Unity, a coalition of families who’ve lost loved ones through knife and gun crime. We also supported a conference last week at the Bernie Grant Arts Centre in Tottenham, called “Culture and the 2012 Games: engaging marginalised young people through arts and sport”, and have helped to get anti knife plays into some north London schools.

    Please visit our website. If you’ve any suggestions or would like to help, just leave a message there.

  6. Hi there

    I just wrote a blog with reference to Disarming Britain here:

    http://lunyjane.wordpress.com/2008/06/28/my-first-rant/

    It concerns the portrayal of violence in advertising.

    I hope you enjoy and agree with my thoughts. I really like your campaign; you have a wonderful cause and I fully support it.

  7. I have worked with Mamaa for fifteen years supporting the families of murder victims.Many of them lost loved ones through knife crime.My husband was stabbed over 30years ago,He lived his best friend died from his wounds.Knife crime is not new,what is new is the age of young people who are killing each other.We have fed our children a diet of violence for years and now we wonder why they are violent.In 15 years we have met many wonderful organisations doing amazing work with kids,the problem is that so many fall apart through lack of funding and instead of working together become rivals for the small amount of funding going.WWW.mamaa.org

  8. The idea that carrying weapons is a specifically a trait of people who are poor, under educated or failing in life is misleading.

    None of these tags could have been applied to me.
    I was a top set student in expensive private schools.
    Yet between the ages of fourteen and seventeen I was almost continuously armed. Armed for the purpose of being able to kill anyone instantly if I thought I needed to. Fortunately I never did, but I came within a fraction of a second of doing so.

    So why did I think that I would need to kill ?
    When I was 10 my jaw was dislocated by a roundhouse kick from a 12-year-old. I concealed the injury, because the cause of the mobbing was an accusation of “grassing”. A few months later I left that school, but I had learnt to believe threats, and not to rely on adult authority.

    A second incident occurred when I was thirteen. I was taken to a deserted shower room to be kicked-in by a group of seventeen year olds. I managed to talk my way out of that situation, but decided the danger had returned. From that day I carried a knife wherever I went so that ,as I told myself at the time, “I could walk out of any room I walked into” i.e. I would live.

    I doubted I could survive resisting unless I immediately killed my attacker(s). I believed that if they survived they would get their retribution later.

    My plan was to tollerate any assault that I believed would stop short of grevious injury, but if my survival were in doubt passivism would change to instant killing without warning. Many times I stood still being robbed or assaulted, with my knife open in my hand in my pocket – waiting to see if it would be necessary.

    I should explain that no deterence could have affected me – I was concerned with staying alive. I expected that justice would be wildly prejudiced, such that there was no hope of any defence, and that any call for protection would result in certain betrayal.

    These conditions are likely to exist anywhere that a code of silence is in effect, and anywhere that individuals cannot rely on the protection of external authority. The higher prevelance of such conditions among less well off communities is likely a direct result of lack of empathy on the part of the authorities. ie lack of police who are trusted by those communities.

    As such the concept of “the criminal classes” becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy any time that the police start to belive it.

    If teens are demonized as “hoodies”, “yobos” etc … that would be sufficient to cause and perpetuate the problem of weapons being carried.

    There may well be other factors, but so long as we see criminals not fellow citizens we cannot expect to get weapons off the street.

  9. I am only a younge student but I feel so strongly about gun crimes. I want to get involed and help the campagines that are going on. The C4 advert realy moved me and since seeing it I havent been able to get it off my mind. Please give me some ideas about the best way of gettin involved. Jo

  10. I am watching “kids knives and broken lives” at the moment and what strikes me is that it’s not the weapons that are the problem it’s the readiness to use them.
    Many of the kids on here say that “anything is a weapon”
    They don’t even seem to think twice about causing serious harm to another human being. There is no contemplation, no remorse no thought!
    Where has this arrogance come from, why do these people think they are owed respect.
    Respect it is something you earn, these people are confusing respect with fear.
    Look at the videos of these kids and then compare them to the videos we see of terrorists, there is no difference! These are the terrorists on our doorstep!
    There is not one thing fuelling this there are several things ; poverty, drink and drugs , broken homes, jelousy and the main factor is that people think the only way to deal with this is to be violent. We need to enable these kids to take control of their lives in a positive way , we need strong positive no nonsense role models, not the soft-touch government we seem to have.

    I don’t live in an environment where knives and guns are an everyday thing but I do live somewhere where violence is increasingly accepted as a reasonable way to solve problems. I am 20 years old and i seriously fear what lies ahead of me, I dont want to bring kids into this world if they are gonna end up having to carry a knife or dead, it’s not worth it.

  11. After tonights programme, I am left with the impression that molly coddling those involved in the use of gun and knife culture is the way ahead; god forbid calling it Gang Culture.

    The fact of the mater and lets face it we learn it at birth; place your hand in a fire there are consequences you get burned you fear it and learn form it. Our human rights do gooder society has created this society and gang culture of gun and knife weilding thugs, who have no fear of the consequences, because there are none! This starts at the youngest level as far as crime and punishment is concerned; the younger an individual is the softer it is be that there is any at all.

    There has to be a fear of the consequences, people have to take responsibikity for their own actions we as a society are far too pro human rights therefore until we turn this around and discipline is feared rather than worn as a badge this culture will continue.

  12. Working with young people from the age of 16 upwards for the past 5 years, I have learnt that if young people have a positive role model in their life, someone they can talk to who is non-judgemental but can teach them valuable life lessons, they are less likely to get involved in gangs. Being open with young people so that they can talk to about their issues and experiences allows you to better understand thier situation and using that knowledge to link them into specialist services who can support them. Young people need to feel like they have a voice and someone is listening to them. They get talk to and talked to so much sometimes talking to me is the first time they have ever been listened to by an adult. Coupled with the fact that I am only 10 years older than the youngest person I work with also helps them to feel more comfortable with me.
    Get young people linked into services, mentors or peer mentors and LISTEN TO THE YOUNG PEOPLE!

  13. I am a 38 year old working class gay man from Liverpool, who has Lived in London for many years, doing an Access course and degree, then moved back home for a while, got into a fight, and stabbed somebody and got 3 years, and went to jail. I regret what I did, and have remorse etc. however I was atattacked first, and was very very scared, that obviously doe not justify it. I was already a scared individual, and feared for my safety on Britain’s streets before this happened. I as also a little bit of an angry man inside me, which has got more angry after my incarceration period, although I am working for the CAB now, and have made my life a little better. But what I seen when I was in jail, absolutely angered me to the core, a huge amount of disaffected angry young men. who appeared to have no hope or comfort of any future opportunities to improve their lives for the better. I was astonished at how many of these people could not read or write, and feel that this is absolutely disgusting in one of the world’s richest countries. They had no respect for themselves, and alot did not appear to have any respect for the authorities, not out of choice, but out of their life experiences. I feel pessimistic but strongly about this issue, and would like to help in tackling these very complex problems. I wrote a poem whilst incarcerted, and would like to take this opportunity to share it with you, it was how I was feeling at that particular time, and if it can help in any way, shape or form, or even create or involve me in helping in any way, then I would love to:
    LAND OF HOPE AND GLORY

    I have a problem with capitalism,
    I feel it’s quite unfair,
    i’ts dictated my life from being born,
    but people jst don’t care.

    Racism, homophobia, xenophobia,
    and mysogyny is rife,
    and fearing for my safety
    is part of everyday life.

    Theres children living in absolute poverty,
    and old people dying of the cold too,
    theres disease, famine and starvation,
    unreachable to me and you.

    we study and strive and work like a dog,
    and all just to make ends meet,
    we battle the system for years on end,
    and still refuse to be beat.

    theres prejudice and discrimination,
    down every road we turn,
    We live in squalid council flats,
    but push to learn and learn.

    People are judged by the place they are from,
    Or by the colour of teir skin,
    Or by the person they choose to love,
    black, gay, fat or thin.

    we go to war, kill thousands of people,
    women and children aswell,
    and leave these civilians battered and bruised,
    to exist in a living hell.

    we create anger aplenty that dwells on our shores,
    and wonder why violence explodes,
    Money and power is what people desire,
    fuck what happens on our roads.

    Big capitalism oppresses the poor,
    and causes young children to starve,
    But the politicians spout nonsense claims,
    like cutting poverty in halve.

    The constant advertising we see on the telly,
    Is for things we can never afford,
    but all we ask is a decent life,
    we are not asking to live like a lord.

    The nhs is in a mess,
    the jails are at bursting point,
    it’s ok to drop bombs and maime little kids,
    but you get arrested for smoking a joint

    But if we get angry,
    we get labelled as bad,
    the process of this
    makes me feel sad.

    The government has to listen to the disaffected youth, up and down the country, otherwise this horrific and frightening phenomenon will get alot worse before it gets better, it affects ALL of us, not just certain sections of society, thank you.

  14. When I watched Channel 4 last night , all the programmes about youth and knife crime I broke down and cried. It surprised me to react so strongly but I feel we have failed our children so badly.
    I could have told you 15 years ago that London youth was heading in this direction.
    15 years ago I took my son out of school and home educated him to protect him from violence and attack from boy gangs in school and in the streets to and from school.
    I was a single parent and was given an extremely hard time by the authorities both of us were. For years he had been brutalised in school by gangs which they mistakenly called “bullying” and their attitude was always to say that he was bullied because I was a single parent and didn’t look after him properly. It was all my fault and they took no responsability for controlling the gangs in the school or even acknowledging that they existed.
    One of my son’s friends was murdered, shot dead last year for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, a sweet caring intelligent peaceful young black man.
    I bet those responsible were in a gang and “bullied” other children in school, I bet no one really did much about it.
    After I took my son out of school a couple of years later I sent him to Southwark College when he was repeatedly threatened with knives and was attacked. The response of the college when I had a meeting with them was to say that he was being paranoid and imagining it because I was over-protective and clung onto him as a single parent. At Southwark College , this was 12 years ago now, my son’s black friends often brought not just knives but machetes and other weapons into the college, these were the nice kids. They carried these weapons to college because they were so scared. The staff working there and the other schools my son attended were always in denial and basically were more concerned with league tables and Ofsted inspections, many parents like myself who complained were told we were the problem and that there was no problem in the school.
    They really were nice polite kids but the mainstream society was/is all about money, appearance, getting ahead, I’m alright jack, competition.. ..no morals basically since Thatcher got in.
    What do you expect?
    I am of the “love and peace” generation but we were blamed for loose morals, well a fine mess the money -and- TV- fame-and-appearance-is-everything culture has made, I prefer love and peace and understanding and being creative as ethics.
    As a result of taking my son away from the violence in schools and home educating him he did extremely well at University and is now a University lecturer himself in Germany. He has sworn never to come back and live in the UK due to the crime and the ” Zero Tolerance” of the police , CCTV cameras which only alienates youth further and doesn’t give them a better place to grow up.
    In my opinion we need to make community a priority and let groups of youths have some control and power over their lives , to get them to help set up youth clubs with creative activities that can make them feel good about themselves and give them better ethics.
    I also think parents should encourage activities with their children, family activities so that their children do not spend their whole time playing violent computer games getting wired and de-sensitising them from violence. Also to help girls as much as boys as they are also suffering from this rubbish culture we have adopted from the US, we need to look more at cultures where young people are not so troubled , watch less tv, do more things with their families. Familes need some help too, if everything is so expensive that parents are either desperate or both parents have to work what do their children get up to? There just not enough help out their for families and their children. Not enough good summer holiday facilites for growing children who might be alone from 6 weeks from 11 years old onwards while Mum and Dad are at work.

    Love and Peace to you all. Good luck, empower youth with guidance don’t disempower them.

    V A

  15. I watched Kids, Knives, and Broken Lives and The Truth about Street Weapons last night and it really, really annoyed me. Its all well and good spending all this money to raise awareness of what’s going on out here and getting these people to come on TV and tell us all about the statistics, trying to make it look like they know what’s happening when its obvious they don’t have a clue. These people get paid lots of money to fiddle with pieces of paper and use big words and at the end of the day they go home, close their door and think no more about it.

    We already know how many people are being killed or attacked on a day to day basis because they’re our friends and families and people that we are living around. We don’t need a reporter to come onto the streets and for Gordon brown to come on TV and tell us how bad it’s getting because we already know. What we want to know is what you are going to do to stop it or to at least try?

    The fact of the matter is the real help in tackling the problems on the streets isn’t coming from the government or the police. It’s coming from the people in these communities that have witnessed what’s happening and are now devoting their lives to helping these kids and the families of victims. Whether it is paid or voluntary work in youth centres, speaking out in schools, or coming together and forming workshops to keep the kids off the streets. These are the people that the youths of today are respecting

    It’s a vicious cycle of kids who truly believe the way to gain respect is to make others fearful of them, others who carry weapons not because they want to or they like to, but because they dont want to become the next victim, communities that are too scared to speak out against them and a government and policing system that doesn’t have a clue on how to cope. It’s obvious the authorities and government are trying the tackle the issues but it seems to me like their all doing it separately when they need to come together and communicate.

  16. i think most people are missing the real problem here. the real problem is not guns or knifes it is street gang culture in this country. street gang culture has grown and grown in the uk since the early ninties when ganster rap became fashionable and then slowly but surely all the entertainment media film, music, tv and computer games saw that this was popular and decided cash in on it . this made sure it was all that the youth of britain saw so then they naturaly felt that being part of street gangs were normal behaviour. guns and knives are not the problem because even if they did not have guns or knives they would just use other things like sticks bricks bottles all of which are just as leathal as a knife or a gun.
    gun crime is easily solved you leagalise handguns again as they were b4 they were outlawed after the dunblaine tradgedy. because as soon as hand guns were banned you tookthe control of hand guns away from the police and govenment and gave control of handguns to the criminal gangs if any one wants me to elaborate on this point i will be quite glad to do so

  17. I have worked with young people for over thirty years and we as adults have to take resonsibilite for our young people they learn from us when they see their peers and adults in there lives getting away with various crimes glamourising crime ,emulating, movie stars in there role play these young people need to feel that they have a future and so many that ive worked with dont have the vision they need our help not condemnation young people as a whole get a raw deal government complain but then cut funding in both stat and vol sectors i kills me to see people working with these young people who,s only goal is the pay packet and are,nt intersted in the impact their negative remarks and action,s have upon these young people crb what a crok!

  18. CRB they must make a fortune it doesnt tell you if the person is selling drugs or that their children are or indeed any deviant activity unless procequted and lets have it rite young people are vunerable nieve and can be manipulated i have watched so called drug dealers /gangsters ruin the are we live in then move out to a very affluent are leaving the aftermath wheres the tax man in all this does no one ask how can you afford lets say a 70.000.00car half amillion house is it any wonder that our young people want to attin these things if others are getting away with it and there is no annonimity at court anymore come on give our kids a chance invest in their future put your money where your mouth is and then maybe they will begin to trust you the government (up the youth workers we do a 24/7 job and most are commited to our young people)

  19. If i am honest I think its discipline. Us young youths have to much lee way which may be the cause of all of this. Young youths fear nobody were as if they were discipline it would’nt be like this. Schools need to be stricter and so do parents. Parents and teachers and other adults in genral need to stop putting youths down and they need to be reminding them constantly that they are special.
    Teenagers need to realised what their purpose is in life. I think maybe even having loads more churches, mosks and other religious places around may help them to become more positive & value their lifes and the life of others around them.
    I also think that if teenagers are out on the road past 12:00 the police should be able to question them and ask them why they are on the road. If they don’t have a valied reason then i believe that its only fair they get sent home.
    1. Be strict on teenagers
    2.Find out whats going on in their lifes thats making them get into gun/knife crime.
    3.Get more youths into jobs.
    4.As money may even be a problem as to why they have turned to gun and knife crime then reward them with money when they behave themselfs.
    5.MORE REWARD SYSTEMS NEEDS TO BE PUT INTO PLACE, SO TEENAGERS HAVE SOMETHING TO WORK TOWARDS.
    It’s funny because my parents or grandparents generation would’nt even dream of doing half of the things us young youths get up to these days and why is that?
    Whats the difference now?
    LACK OF STRICTNESS.
    All the youths just want to be a fast money maker, people need to make them understand that money don’t grow on trees. I have a range more of things to say please don’t hesistate to email me or get in touch. As i think my ideas may actually go quite a long way. If you would like me to elaborate all the following points i just made i would be more than happy to do so.
    I will be looking forward to your reply on this comment.

    The thing with most youths they like to learn things the hard way. They like to experience things themselfs. Hard of hearing.
    We need to get them out of this.

  20. What i think is that all this uncalled violence can be down to the lack of attention parents give their children. All youths want is praise and attention bt when parents are tied down with work they sometimes 4get this is what their children want. They often come home stressed and sometimes take it out on their children. Another thing is, when their children do good things this can range from getting good grades in skl, accomplishing something or anything else they dnt praise their children enough to encourage them to continue to do good things. But when they do something bad they instantly have a go at them forgettin the good that they did do. Without encouragement for that good that children do, they fell whats the point of doing good if it doesnt get recognised. This is why parents need to take a look at the good that their children do and appreciate it. Also they should treat their children to show that they appreciate and realise that they are trying their best to do good. Give them gifts every now and then this will show the child that their parents appreiciate them being good. Also i think communication is the key. Listening to your child helps and letting them have their say is important. They should also have space for themselves locking your child up is not the answer but letting them roam the streets all hours of the night also isnt ryt. Children need someone to tlk to, someone to relate to.

    But its also down to the child its not just the parents fault sometimes parents do do all they can to keep their children from running wild but it has no effect on them.

    But i think this knife and gun violence is down to youth not having nothing to do with their life and no one to look up to but drug dealers hu get eay money. Nowadays no one wants to work for what they got they wnt a easy way out. No one wants to start at the bottom and work to the top evryone wants to be at the top in an instant. Role models arent really around anymore. Some parents arent pplz that the youth can look up to and itz sad to know that. The youth need somthing to do activities clubs. These clubs need to be funded by the government for parents who cant afford to pay for them. we also need to listen to what the youth want..what do they think will keep them in the good and off the streets. Its for them so its important to have their views on things….
    i have mor to write but ill leave it for nw
    thankyou for ur tym
    x

  21. “Disarming Britain”, “Knife Crime”, “Gun Crime”

    We’ve got to stop using phrases like this because it only serves to blind us from seeing the truth.

    You cannot disarm Britain because knives are an essential part of our lives unless the suggestion is that we move towards not being able to prepare food in our own kitchens. Then what? do you ban the sale of a piece of 2 x 4 timber? or ban the sale of bricks?

    anyone interested in the facts needs to get hold of a copy of The Centre for Crime and Justice Studies report on knife crime.

    This report got very little attention, except for an article on the BBC website

    We removed legitimate ownership of guns in a move to “disarm Britain” and cut down on gun crime and it didn’t make the slightest difference to gun crime figures.

    We’ve now virtually banned the legitimate ownership of samurai swords because there have been 8 deaths in as many years due to attacks with samurai swords. Compare that to the number of deaths caused per year by cigarettes, alcohol or cars to get a proper perspective. The figures for this, the government admitted, came from media reports.

    The media and politicians sell this concept of a knife crime epidemic which just isn’t true, the figures for knife crime have remained stable for the last 10 years, there is no epidemic.

    If we are to tackle the problem of teenage violence in our society, we’ve got to stop making the weapon of choice the centre of focus. This actually takes our focus away from looking in to the causes of violence. A knife doesn’t cause knife crime, a gun doesn’t cause gun crime. Ban one item, and the next available item will be used. You cannot disarm Britain in order to deal with violence in our society. The effect the ban on guns had should give us a reasonably good idea that these bans have no effect on the violence in our society, so we need to start looking at other ways of dealing with the problem. We need to be asking ourselves what is actually going on in their heads. What are the motives for this violence and then we need to look at ways of dealing with the elements that motivate the violence in our society.

    The phrase “knife crime” sells papers and gets politicians the media attention they seek. But it really means nothing. The crimes are committed by people and not knives. Every house hold contains on average, half a dozen knives, some contain many more. You cannot remove them from society. They are used as tools by tradesmen, chefs and people in their own kitchens preparing food. You cannot outlaw knives, and even if you did, it would make a minimal difference to the violent crime figures.

    By causing this “fear of knife crime” that sells papers and gets politicians the media attention they seek. They create an extra element of fear in our society, and it is the fear in society that is at the root of the problem. The media and the politicians, rather than confronting and working to remove violence from our society, are actually, albeit unwittingly, encouraging it.

    If you put the idea in to the teenager’s head that the other guy is going to have a knife, and then they are going to make sure that they go out with a knife too. Ditto Guns

    The knife becomes cool and gives Kudos to the gang member. And this is all because our irresponsible media and politicians like to get attention. It’s all about selling papers and getting names in papers.
    ————————————————————————- Excerpts from the CCJS report;

    “According to the Home Office, a total of 89,864 knives were handed in during the national amnesty. Home Office minister Vernon Coaker stated that this means ‘fewer knives on our streets’ and greater security for everyone”

    “Assuming that there are approximately 22 million households in England and Wales, each possessing a single kitchen knife, the amnesty has been successful in removing 0.0041 per cent of knives that might be used in crimes.”

  22. There’s still hope, the UK is a billion miles away from the situation the states were in back in the 90s, and even now, with violent youth crime and gang culture. A large percentage of our so-called “gang culture” is true-blue wannabe, completely ripping off even the lingo which no longer makes contextual sense outside of the US. these kids aren’t real gangstas, there’s no 150 year old gang tradition on their block which their fathers, uncles and grandfathers were all a part of, as there are in parts of Southern California. these are just kids, wanting desperately to be bad, and wanting desperately enough to prove it that they’d kill someone.

    the hard life is real. the poor housing conditions is real. the lack of money is real. the ultra-violent, gangsta “respect” lifestyle is a manafactured product which in its current incarnation we have caught largely from North America, like a disease. it is not real. there are kids in other countries living in much harder conditions in much deeper poverty and a much more thoroughly entrenched street culture, who do not run around killing one another. you can’t blame this on hard-living, it’s a manafactured state of mind which the youth of modern britain aspire to as if it were God.

    channel 4 seems to be making the mistake of giving these gangs and offenders far too much credibility, and taking them far too seriously. It is acting as if these kids have no choice, they’re “caught up in the lifestyle”, and no conscious decision-making was exercised when they plunged a knife into somebody’s neck. Channel 4 is totally caught up in the hype, it would have made a much better series of programmes with a harder, more critical viewpoint, because only with this viewpoint can any sort of real solution be engineered.

    it seems to be reporting from the perspective of a naive kid listening to his mob deep album, with all the dirty urban typefaces and sensationalist-yet-trying-not-to-be adverts that go along with the disarming Britain season. the whole get-up reeks of open-eyed awe, their vision doesn’t seem to penetrate to any worthwhile level, they’ve got caught-up in the mean streetz window-dressing, which is a shame, because they could have made some genuinely worthwhile programmes about a very important subject.

    we’ve all seen young offenders talk absent-mindedly about their crimes, and we’ve all seen victims try and reconcile something which is irreconcilable. we’ve all seen what happens when you give a youngster a camera and some airtime and ask him to tell the viewers how “bad” his lifestyle is. I’m sorry, but a teenaged kid who happens to live in a council block in hackney, whilst having a valid perspective on the lifestyle of violent street crime, is not automatically qualified to have a valid opinion on the potential solutions, or even guaranteed to have anything worthwhile to say. why not show us something different? something challenging?

    we need opinions from people thinking outside the box, who aren’t caught up in the hype, who don’t buy into the reality of the gangsta lifestyle. it doesn’t seem anyone on the disarming britain team falls into that category. the whole season of shows will do nothing to tackle violent street crime, it will only hype it all up even more, which seems for some reason to be high on the media agenda in 2008.

  23. If you watched the 7.50pm short which aired last night, it would be clear that the eight-year-old (involved in Easterhouse’s Drummy gang since the age of six) did have a heritage of gang culture. And it didn’t come from America.

    His father was also a member of the gang as a kid. His son was well turned out. A sweet little thing.

    But he had ‘bust’ another kids head open. And had the same done to him.

    If daddy proved his mettle as a big strong man by being in a gang, then, just like fathers pass on affiliation to a particular football team to their sons, you can see why the same happens, in Easterhouse at least.

    ‘Gang’ culture isn’t a uniquely American thing. What about mods, skinheads, punks – they’re all an example of people belonging – whether or not a real sense of family back home may or may not exist.

    That Britain’s youths have adopted American/’Gangsta’ slang could well be just a recent example of culture being taken on board by youths, just as it has for decades. But yes, for some, it could be ‘fake.’ But they’re choosing it, all the same. Why?

    The Glasgow Street Weapons Commission visit brought up much about Glasgow’s gang history – going back far further than Easterhouse’s development. And we’ve had untold numbers of emails from now-grown-up individuals from all over the country who were in ‘gangs’ when they were younger, and who, yes, did choose to arm themselves.

    If you’re really not in their situation, you never really know why they do it. Yes, they’re not living in slums in Sao Paolo, but we’re not talking about that. We’re talking about children carrying weapons on our own doorstep. That it’s got people talking – the first step to action – can only be a good thing.

  24. A lot of idle chat and criticism but who’s representing the kids themselves? The absurdity of the situation is illustrated in Cherie Blair’s comments today that she ‘fears for the safety of her own kids’!!! Get a grip love- you’re only showing your ignorance. Socially protected, middle-class children will never be exposed to such violent crime. It’s the under-represented working class kids of the street that are in need of help.

  25. BTWSC Because… Youth Crime Reduction Summit PRESS RELEASE
    Immediate Release
    June 11 2008

    Home Office Minister Gives A Heart-felt Response And Throws A Challenge To Community-led Youth Crime Summit

    Home Office Minister Vernon Coaker MP did not mince his words when he spoke on Wednesday at the BTWSC Because… Youth Crime Reduction Summit, held at Government Office For London, near Vauxhall.

    “I discipline my kids, so if you want to say anything, just say: ‘The Home Office minister says he disciplines his own kids,” said the plain-talking former school teacher, to rapturous applause from delegates including local and regional elected representatives, youth council, police and probation officers, youth workers, faith organisations, teachers, and parents, some of whose children had died from knife or gun crime.

    He went on to explain that the vast majority of parents knew the difference between discipline and child abuse.

    The minister was not the only one with forthright views on discipline. “Young people are the same all over – they need two things – they need love and they need respect,” said Richard Buxton, formerly a lawyer and now a west London pastor.

    “Not a love that’s sentimental. But a love that sets boundaries, and shows discipline, and they need respect. What we need to do is to encourage and help all those institutions that are able to provide the love that brings with it boundaries, and respect for them, particularly the families.

    “There’s a verse in the Bible which says train up a child in the way he should go and when he’s old, he will not depart from that. My experience is that it is true.”

    The minister was responding to the top 4 youth crime reduction recommendations polled during last September’s London Week Of Peace by BTWSC, a pan-London voluntary organisation that aims to develop potential and raise aspirations.
    The recommendations covered support for families, youth clubs, highlighting positive opportunities for young people, and positive role models within the media.

    “The Because… youth crime project was inspired by the Don’t Trigger anti- gun and knife crime campaign song ‘Why?’,” explained BTWSC co-ordinator Ms Serwah, the summit organiser. “In 2005, we looked at the reasons for the spate of youth crime, and explored some of the possible solutions, through inter-generational consultations and workshops.

    “The aim was for the community to offer some bottom-up ideas to Government to help combat youth crime. We are therefore pleased that the Home Office minister spent time at each of the four workshops, which focused on the top 4 youth crime reduction recommendations.”

    It was recognised that there were already lot of opportunities out there that young people were unaware of. One suggestion was to have “positive opportunities brokers”, who would have a long, professional relationship with young people, to raise awareness regarding appropriate opportunities and help them access these opportunities.

    “It’s about offering people hope,” said the minister. “It’s not about everyone being a professional footballer – it’s about saying to that individual, irrespective of your ability, irrespective of your talent, irrespective of where you come from, the size of your house, your ethnicity, we will try to ensure that the opportunity is made available to you.”

    Having earlier challenged the delegates to judge him on the outcomes of his promises, saying: “I want to be judged by whether what I say makes a difference,” the minister personalised his points by referring to his own family to illustrate how to harness opportunities.

    He agreed that parents need to be supported, as they have the prime responsibility for raising their offsprings. “It’s about support, but saying to a minority of parents that if they do not take care of their responsibility, they will be brought to task for it,” he added.

    On the subject of the seemingly over-representation of negative stories in the media, the minister whilst admitting that “bad things happen”, said the Government had some responsibility in this area. “What we need is a sense of balance with the positive,” he said, noting that a vast majority of young people are decent.

    One of the ideas he’s toying with in order to help redress the balance is a “national positive youth day” that highlights young people doing positive things, like helping the elderly or other community-spirited activities.

    For those that are already involved, or at the risk of involvement, in criminality, one of the summit workshop facilitators, Superintendent Leroy Logan of the Metropolitan Police, suggested that “Prevention should be a lot more holistic.”

    The problem needs the police, statutory, local community and voluntary organisations working together in order to address it, he said. “Power of the pen, and the power of the people,” will bring about profound change, when community projects are focused and succinct, and more people from diverse backgrounds decide to work together, he added.

    Similar sentiments were expressed by another facilitator, Andrea Encinas, a gospel arts practitioner. “For me, the most important thing was the media’s responsibility,” said Andrea. “By ensuring that positive stories come through, the media will help foster relationships with the different communities, different religions and cultures.”
    “It was refreshing to be surrounded by a concerned community who knew that it was important for the ‘village’ to raise its children,” said Cllr Nana Asante, who facilitated the support for families workshop.

    “Vernon Coaker MP was particularly impressive, restoring faith in politicians with his common sense approach to supporting parents. In view of the serious crisis in the community, it is high time that we took over running the asylum from the lunatics: discipline and boundaries are as necessary as rights and responsibilities. Making discipline a shameful concept is what has brought us to this sorry state. It would be lunacy to carry on in this fashion.”

    Vernon Coaker and a number of delegates made a commitment to meet a year on, to find out what progress made been made, or issues had arisen.

    Ends

    Ms Serwah
    BTWSC co-ordinator
    info@btwsc.com
    020 8450 5987
    http://www.btwsc.com

    Editor’s notes
    BTWSC takes its name from the initials of its first project entitled Beyond The Will Smith Challenge, a competition where young people were encouraged to write a song, poem or article that was uplifting and devoid of swearing

    BTWSC co-ordinator is publicly known as Ms Serwah (or if your housestyle permits – BTWSC spokeswoman)

    The summit workshop facilitators were Cllr Nana Asante (Harrow councillor – facilitated providing support for parents); Adeodatus Twumasi (a new graduate with first class degree – facilitated highlighting positive activities for youth), Supt Leroy Logan (Metropolitan Police – facilitated providing youth clubs with an ethos) and Andrea Encinas (gospel arts practitioner – facilitated highlighting positive role models in the media)

    The summit was organised by Ms Serwah (BTWSC) and chaired by Kwaku (BTWSC)
    We’re Part Of The Solution Top 4 Youth Crime Reduction Poll
    Support For Families/Parents: 60%
    Youth Clubs: 46%
    Highlight Positive Activities: 40%
    Positive Role Models Within The Media: 35%

    Source: BTWSC poll conducted September 9-21 2007. Respondents chose up to a maximum of 4 solutions from the 14 Because… Youth Crime 2005 Recommendations, or had the option to add their solutions if they were not listed

  26. i would like to correct mr Simon Attwoods qoute ” We removed legitimate ownership of guns in a move to “disarm Britain” and cut down on gun crime and it didn’t make the slightest difference to gun crime figures.” it did make a big diffrence to gun crime figures. the rose dramaticaly in fact by well over 100% in the past 10 years. one thingi do think is quite ammusing is that the head person o this disarming britain is cherrie booth. this amuses me because her husband is one of the two people directly responsible for this rise in gun crime the other being john major.
    they are resposile for the rise because of The Firearms (Amendment) (No. 2) Act 1997 was the second of two Acts of the Parliament of the United Kingdom from 1997 that amended the regulation of firearms within the United Kingdom. The other Act was the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1997. It was introduced by the new Labour government of Tony Blair.
    The act was created in response to the Snowdrop Petition following the Dunblane Massacre. The previous Conservative government had followed the recommendations of the Cullen Report on the massacre and introduced the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1997 that banned “high calibre” (sic) handguns, greater than .22 calibre. But this new (No. 2) act banned the private ownership of all cartridge ammunition handguns, regardless of calibre.
    this act effectivley took all controls of such weapons away from the home office or the police. another question never asked s how did some of the guns that were handed in by honest law abiding people to the police to be destroyed during the amnesty end up for sale in european countries like germany. looks like he home office have some explaining to do there how do guns destroyed by british police end up owned by people in germany ?.
    the types of guns used in most street crime are illeagley owned cartridge firing hand guns. the reason for this is that the The Firearms (Amendment) (No. 2) Act 1997 actualymade it easier for any one o buy and own one of the guns that it was making illeagle because now the only people controling the import and sale of these weapons are the criminal gangs mainly from ex eastern block countries (funnily enough counties now part of main land europe where many of the guns the police destroyed actualy ended up).
    the only way to cut gun crime is to bringback the old gunlaws we had before 1997 put the control of the sale and import of hand guns back into the hands of the home office and police that system served us well for years. yes both hungerford and dunblaine were tradgedies but in both of those cases the fault lies with the police forces of those areas as in both cases the police knew these people were not suitable to own guns yet still allowed them to own them regardless. this is the reason why certain parts of the cullen report into dunblaine will not be available for the public to read for over a hundred years because the government need to cover up the mistakes that were made by them and the police that led to this tragedy. so as i have said the only way to cut or stop gun crime is to bring back the sensible gunlaws we had before 1997 when we actualy had gun laws.
    there is a very old saying that has proven true over the past 10 years if you outlaw guns only outlaws have guns.

  27. nat – “‘Gang’ culture isn’t a uniquely American thing. What about mods, skinheads, punks – they’re all an example of people belonging – whether or not a real sense of family back home may or may not exist.”

    not for a second did i suggest gang culture to be uniquely american, only that our present wave of super-violent street thugs are modelled for the most part on the american type. mods skinheads and punks might have taken to the streets with chains etc., but guns and knives? yeah there were knives, and even the odd gun maybe, but nothing like the way things are today. modern gang culture is prevalent to the point of being almost the norm among a certain age group, and that age group starts worryingly young.

    mods and punks etc. were always a minority, neither were they prolific killers, responsible for murders which have in recent years become casual to the point where a “civilian” can be shot in the head for inadvertantly looking at someone who they didn’t even look at, by a kid who isn’t even a genuine killer, he just did it out of peer pressure and someone shouting “kill dat blud” in his ear.

    emma from nottingham – this new breed of ultra-violence with knives and guns is not a working class thing at all, it started at the very bottom of the welfare classes in social housing, and from day one was interwoven with the selling of hard drugs and non-existent families at home. talk to any true blue working class and they’d tell you they’d rather sort things out with fists and the occasional bottle. and as much as it might pain me to admit it, cherie blair has a point, every single youngster who walks the street is at a potential risk nowadays, it’s almost become part of mainstream pop culture, although granted the kids in the bad areas have to deal with it on a daily basis, not just the chance of running into it on the street one night.

    you have to seperate contemporary gang culture which very much takes its lead from late 80s/early 90s Los Angeles and New York, from other gang cultures which might exist. our problem right now is the extreme and easy violence, not the more “traditional” british gangs that have bubbled along for years and years and only ever put the odd few people in a hospital bed.

    we need a double-pronged attack with, on the one hand, hard-a$$ policing which is not happening and is not allowed to happen, and on the other, a humanistic reaching out to the kids on the estates with help and support and role-models and places to go/activities etc. which does happen but obviously not to the extent that it needs to and not at all in some places.

    britain needs to say, to the kids who have already killed: “you’re nicked, see you in 30 years.” to the ones who are treading the path but are not yet killers, “we’re here to help you sort your life out, hard as it may be, but put a foot wrong and we’ll crack your skulls” and to the ones who have not yet started along the path “don’t start, do A, B and C instead, we’re here to help you too.” Is any of that really happening at the moment? it’s tough, and in all honesty it might be impossible to sort out, but we can certainly do more than we are now.

    we also have what is in my opinion the million-dollar problem of an insurmountable obstacle at this present time, which is the attraction of the villain in pop culture. we’re all capitalists, and if kids can’t have a legit piece of the pie, they’ll do a 50 cent and get rich or die tryin’. good guys seem to be out at the moment, kids want to be bad in the extreme, and as corny and out of touch as it may sound, the popular media with iconic images of role model villains, especially of the “street thug” mould, is filling all these mini capitalists’ heads with aspirations of crime. it’s simply not cool to be anything other than a stone cold murdering drug-dealer who “gets theirs” nowadays, and sadly our society is reaping what has helped been sown by the media and our own shallow capitalist ideals.

    think about it, for the most part, these kids are only doing what any good london financier or executive ceo would do if you stripped him of all his wealth and dumped him in a north london bedsit. they’re living the capitalist model with a gangsta twist. the people at the top might have money and safe comfortable housing, but as a country we have no spiritual or moral backbone, no ethical code of conduct, and no love for our neighbour. We’re all out for our own material success, it’s just that the killing that goes on in the business world is a metaphorical one that doesn’t add bodies to the morgue. it’s the same deal though, the life of your fellow man is undervalued, the money in your bank account, social status and material wealth, overvalued. so in a way, this whole thing is just one of the heads on a hydra which, let’s be honest, you, me or anyone else ain’t ever gonna kill. we all love our lexus too much.

  28. I’ve been watching all this debate on TV with that Blair Witch and she says she cares! All the members on the panels on the documenteries were old people.

  29. lets be honest guns and knives are not a problem. infact i’ll go one furthe and say guns and knives are harmless. how can i say this you may ask you may very well be saying “steve have you not seen how many people are getting stabbed and shot on the news every day” the answer to that is yes i do see it but it is not the fault of the gun or the knife. for example i could load and cock a gun leve it on a table in public with a knife next to it and leave them there. on that table in the middle of the public for untouched for a thoasand years and do you know how many people that gun or knife would harm?. answer: none not a single one because they are just inaniemet objects.
    guns and knifes are simply tools tools that are occasionaly used to kill people by (wait for it) people. other tools used to kill people are cars (100’s killed every year), hammers (peter sutcliff the yorkshire ripper), power drills (geofrey darmer the american serial killer and canibal), toothbrushes (the favorite weapon of the average prisoner in uk prisons). so do we ban all these tools to because because all of them with the possible excaption of the power drill have been used in street crime incidents where death or serious injury have occured. some of you may be thinking how a car used think of joyriding and the many people killed by joyriders every year. the answer no because it would be imposile to ban all these tools because they are essential to dailylife for nearly every person in this country as are knives.
    now guns on the other hand are not essential to daily life for every one and they have been band with certain exceptions. even with these exceptions the type of guns used in street crime are genraly cartridge fireing handgns which are banned. now the question is who is responsible for putting guns on the street into the hands of young teens the answer s simple but before i answer i better say cherie blair if you reading this you may want to look away for the answer (ccs you gonna have kittens). the person responsible for putting illeagle gun’s on to the streets and into the hands of our children is tony blair this i have aready explained in an earliier statement and also explained how to rectify the situation

  30. ONE,MAJOR QUESTION! Has this so called board lived and grown up in this invirerament(NO).I have read all these blogs & god,nearly all make sense.My BIG Question is?WHO THE HELLS reading [above] and taking any notice.YES lets be on tv,how do i look am i doing it right(for cameras.and all the rest tv stuff) BUT SWEET F/A for our TRAGIC KIDS (BLACK/WHITE/GAY/BISEXUAL and multi country or whatever of today.IS THIS OUR 21ST CENTURY MODEL of youth today!Someboday-out-their please,show a reply or write a BLOG or whatever.VK

  31. if you only see this it means they took the true comment i typed and banned it from the public because they know its true

  32. Wil

    It’s not because your comment was true, far from it.

    It’s because we have to adhere to media law and ethical guidelines. Your comment was contrary to these.

  33. Alex

    I never said mods, punks, rockers etc were responsible for en-masse killings, either. Simply that there’s always been a sense of belonging between certain facets of Britain’s youth.

    The vast majority of our Bebo members – most of them teenagers – state that weapons should be put down, that that sort of culture isn’t the way to go. So, though the problem seems to be escalating, it’s still a case of a minority spoiling things for everyone else (not that mods, punks, rockers did in my opinion either. This is a different case altogether – albeit one that quite possibly stems from the same roots of needing to belong).

    There isn’t just one solution, and there isn’t just one cause.

    Blaming it on one type of culture may help in part, but it probably blinds us to the bigger picture – which, in fairness, you’ve picked up on later on in your post.

    Yes, a lot of young people probably do want to ‘have it all, right now,’ and, if they haven’t had guidance, support, and perhaps the financial wherewithal to get there the orthodox way – and perhaps, if a life of crime is familiar to them already – then you begin to understand why they take that route.

    We don’t choose who we’re born to. That doesn’t give someone a lifelong excuse for criminal activity, but it’s something that needs to be considered. At some point, we all need to stand up and be counted, to choose between right and wrong.

    Ultimately, this whole series is about examining the reasons behind the situation, and delivering them to the various agencies who can do something about it. And, yes, that includes the collective public. We’ve seen model parents whose sons (and daughters, increasingly) have turned to this lifestyle. Even they’re not always to blame.

    That people are talking about it is crucial. We don’t want any more children killing children, or for that matter, children killing adults.

    * Dispatches: A Widow’s War on Yobs, Saturday at 7pm, Channel 4. Featuring Helen Newlove, whose husband Garry was kicked to death outside his Cheshire home.

  34. I was alarmed by the ‘evidence’ given by John Murphy of the Tackling Gangs Programme and in particular his “affective government” comments.

    Mr Murphy stated:

    “what’s need is for tools to the job where fundamentally everyone comes to the table accepts their responsibilities for their part of the problem and there is government process around the tasking of agencies to cover the issues that need dealing with….”

    Mr Murphy should read the 1998 Crime and Disorder Act see what it and subsequent amendments offer and have a very close look at Community Safety Strategies.

    What Mr Murphy “requires” is already in place and the truth is IF our councils and their partners had used the powers they have and completed in full the commitments they make to our communities in their strategies then the vast majority of problems experienced now would have never materialized to the scale that they have.

    Apart from making it easier to give evidence there is very little need for ‘new tools’ what is needed is a very clear desire from our councils and their partners to complete the commitments they make IN FULL.

    For example below is Warrington’s:

    http://www.warrington.gov.uk/Images/community_safety_tcm31-4994.pdf

    If the Objective / Actions had been completely fulfilled in this the tragic murder of Mr Gary Newlove probably wouldn’t have happened.

    Every council has a strategy one of the questions the committee should be asking is why are they not being used.

    That and the other obvious question of the Police:

    Why is it that TV documentaries and almost all other forms of media can easily find weapons and their users but the people with the authority to do something about them can not?

  35. The current film Adulthood is full of mindless violence and knifes amoungst young people, it is availavle to 15 year olds which means 12 13 and 14 year olds will be getting in to see it. It does not give any moral messages as to why knife crime should not happen or if it does its a very weak message. This film should be banned or at least re censored I have made a strong complaint to the British Film Commisions after seeing the film with a few friends we did not realise the film content and thought it was a Danny Dier gangster type film. (He was actually in it for about 4 minutes exactly the clip for the trailer for the film obviousley just a draw to sell the film) This is the first time I have ever made such a complaint and maybe not many other adults will as it is a 15 film and they won’t be going to it. It is disgracefull that this film should be out there with the current spate of knife crimes or at any time come to that.

  36. I AM FED UP OF ALL THIS TALKING IS SOMETHING ACTUALLY GOING TO BE DONE.

    TALKING IS NOT GOING TO GET US ANYWHERE PEOPLE.

    TWO DAYS AGO ANOTHER MALE DIED IN THORNTON HEATH

    WHERE IS THIS STUPID DEBATE GETTING US? IS ANYBODY ACTUALLY TAKING OUR OPPIPIONS INTO CONSIDERATION?

  37. The debate on knife crime is not stupid and is something that has needed doing for a very long time.

    I suspect some are actually listening but the cynic in me feels that’s more down to bad publicity in terms of the political elite and the fact that its a good seller for the media.

    When things like this:
    http://www.southwark.gov.uk/YourServices/CommunitySafety/livenotknives/

    exist but stop it makes me wonder.

    With regards to Thornton Heath this is what the Council SHOULD have implemented IN FULL:

    http://www.croydon.gov.uk/content/departments/570763/570858/crimestrat08.pdf

    If you can’t read in full here is just one of the aims:

    To reduce violent crime in Croydon by targeting all
    violence against the person including robbery and
    the use of weapons.

    They (the Council and Partners) have been wanting to do something about it since 2005 at the earliest.

    The question is why haven’t they?

  38. “The current film Adulthood is full of mindless violence and knifes amoungst young people, it is availavle to 15 year olds which means 12 13 and 14 year olds will be getting in to see it. It does not give any moral messages as to why knife crime should not happen”

    well said. you touched on a big part of the picture there.

  39. i’ve said this to lots of people and they all agreed, why are we fighting wars abroad when theres wars between gangs at home, the government spends 20 times the money they spend on funding the police by funding the army, shouldnt we recondsider our priorites.

    why does britain even need an army i vote we go nuetral and use all that money and man power on making the country better again… its worked elsewhere,

  40. The problem is that young people have nothing to do. Its not about “coming from a single parent family” or “growing up on a council estate” – its about the indiviudal and how they personally deal with life and the support (if any) they have around them. The police and others neeed to stop showing the world statistics BUT action plans – we don’t spend enough time or money on tackling the problem…its fine though once we can pay a footballer £100,000 a week 2 kick around a ball(!)…We’ve got our priorities all wrong. The children of today are the future and the way things are going now – the UK won’t HAVE a future. Children turn to the streets when there is nothing else to turn to – when home life is unstable they aren’t offered support, most don’t know WHERE they can fiind it, we dnt have councellors in all schools who can speak to both parents and pupils and try 2 pick up on this….when they have nothing to do – because cinema, ice-skating and general activities are just 2 expensive and with 4 brothers and sisters its hard 4 a parent to fund all these luxuries…because of video games that make using a gun look cool…because of rap stars who sing about girls drugs and knifes being “where its at!”…Children as young as 8 are carrying knives its absolutly ridiculous. My personal opinion is that we shud spend more money on tackling the problem. I alwways thought that 24 hour centres should be set up in EVERY area. The doesnt mean London and then Essex but AREA Lambeth, Croydon, Wandsworth etc. So locals are aware and able to use these. These centres should have councellors on site or even simply volunteers who are around for young people 2 talk to. They should have a comfortable enviornment where they can sit and maybe use the computer or simple socialise. Security protected of course. And activities throughout the day (in the same way youth clubs work). Keeping kids potentially off the streets ALL the time. not just from 9am-3pm (skool hourrs). Somewhere they can go when they have problems – not turn to gangs. Where they won’t be “bored” which always seems the problem with most young people.

    If they dont do something now it will be 2 late. If they don’t do somethng lyk my sugestion they need to do SOMETHING. Numbering the 16th or 17th victim is all very well for awareness but what actually is going to be done!

    Im an 18 year old girl living in London – South East London at that seeing this crime day in day out, fearing for her own life and those around her friends and family. I dont want to have 2 live every day like this any more but im not seeing nefink change. the numbers go up. but i still can go by a whole day without seeing one police officer.they need to do something. and they need to do it now.

    love 2 u all . x

  41. In response to Ann Carver;

    How can you justify the film Adulthood as a partial problem to Knife and gun grime because it shows “mindless violence” Its a film like many others out there that show violence? I watched the film and i didn’t once feel influenced by it. But it was fictional insight into what actually is going on in this country! That this problem is real.

    People want to help, but are happy to let it continue because it hasn’t effected them yet!

    My younger brother of 13 lives in a rough part of NW London and peer pressure is a big problem for him. Although for me it wasn’t but today its either you have to be part of it or your dead!

    People carry knifes for protection? No people carry knifes because they think they need to…

    But we laugh because we don’t understand…

  42. typical the commision completely missed the point. i and it once and i’ll say it again. there is no such thing as knife crime or gun crime. guns and knives do not commit crime people commit crime and the only way to stop people wanting to commit crime is to make the punnisments as sevre as possible. what britain need to tackle crimnal gands is a british version of the rico act the americans have this act destroyed the american mafia this would enable us to put whole gang on trial. and we need a ruling that if one member of a gang commits a violent or drug related crime then every member of that gang is as responsible as the one individual that perpatrated it no matter what age youare because by joining the gang you are encoraging the attacks and drug deals to continue. people would be less likely to join a gang in the knowledge that they could get a life sentance in prison beause of the actions of just one of the other members of their gang

  43. I have been thinking about this subject for a long time, i believe there is a good way of hopefully helping to reduce the knife crime figures. It will involve bringing together all the celebrity/actors known by “KIDS” in the knife crime/ gangster circles together and producing a short television clip that would receive a regular airing on all channel 4, B.B.C and I.T.V channels. Each clip would be acted by a different actor/celeb and they would tell all who carry knives that they are cowards and animals. Might be pie in the sky, but i honestly think it might make a small blip on the knife crime figures, and isn’t a small blip better than none ?

  44. here we go a one word answer the birch for anyy teen caught carrying a gun or a knife when they had that once they won’t want it again it works and has proven to work in the ilse of mann when thy had it and in other counties that still have it it just the hippies in this country do not care about our kids enough to disipline themor protect them from the criminals that make up these gangs

  45. “why does britain even need an army i vote we go nuetral and use all that money and man power on making the country better again… its worked elsewhere,”

    are you for real???

    sadly a london teen – good post. hope you manage to stay away from any trouble. sounds pretty rough 😦

    “Might be pie in the sky, but i honestly think it might make a small blip on the knife crime figures, and isn’t a small blip better than none ?”

    good idea. problem is, how can someone who has promoted violent crime through their entire persona and career then turn around for the sake of an ad campaign and change tune and appear genuine?

  46. Re Miss Bond

    Turns out the show was just another media gimmick unfortunately either that or the ‘experts’ just accepted the information they were fed to do the show and did very little research themselves.

    What’s needed is for those already being paid to do a job to what they are paid for and not for the creation of another tier to run it.

    It was noticeable that blaming the Government was attempted and that’s a shame when it should be an all party issue that wants to be resolved.

    Bit surprising of Mrs Blair she should know that crime where I live since the Conservatives took other my local council has gone up but suppose its much easier to point the finger at a struggling Government, seek to appoint another quango and get yourself some publicity at the same time than to say to our Councils and their Partners that you are failing to do your job.

    Massive amount of sympathy for ‘sadly a London teen’ there are action plans in place the fact is they are just sitting there doing little but have to say having being bored and having nothing to do is not an excuse to do any crime.

    I won’t comment on Andrew’s suggestion about the army it’s to stupid to be bothered with.

  47. In Response to Alex and Eric T

    Thank you Alex I was begining to wonder if I was the only one feeling this way. I admit it was a stupid choice of film to waste my time and money on but it opened my eyes to what young people are watching and films do influence people. I have complained to the british board of film censorship for allowing this film to be a 15. I think it should be banned or re censored as an 18. There is one scene where a knife is held up to a girls throat and the attacker say’s “show me your tit’s” The camera cuts away so you do not see the girls breasts but you get a close up of the knife up against her throat, this in itself is weird to protect young people (mostly males who would be the majority going to see this film)- from seeing a girls breasts but a knife up against the throat well that’s ok! I seen this very scene re-inacted outside the cinema by a couple of young teenagers one held his mobile up to a girls neck whilst pushing her against the wall repeating the words from the film. I will say they where messing about and it was in no way serious but I was shocked to see the message that they had taken away.

    Eric T I totally agree the film is a fictional insight into what is going on and I was not influended by it either but I am not under age 15 and still trying to make descisions on how to live my life. My point is not that we should be sheilded from what is going on but it should not be thrown in the faces of young impressionable teenagers otherwise what is the point of censorship. A horror film can be classified 18 when it is fairly obvious that it is fictional. This film may be fictional but was portrayed in a factual way and in my opinion not suitable for a 15 certificate. The film is not educational and has no moral outcome as I said before 15 does not mean 15- 13 and 14 year olds will be getting in to see this film. You say in your comment that people carry knifes for protection that was not portrayed in this film, if it had been made from that view point it would have been a whole different film.

    Any sensible adults out there who have seen this film please let your opinions be known. if this is the way censorship is going we may as well give up now trying to teach our children what is right and wrong, let them sit down to a good blood and guts film on saturday night as a treat followed by a full on porn movie- Why not!

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