L’agression des enfants

Yesterday, an horrendous event took place – no humour from me today, maybe – I was mugged on my own doorstep by a group of 100 teenagers. They were trying to wind up a Somali girl to fight an Asian girl on our street – there were about 50 to a 100 kids, all about 13 or 14, desperately trying to smash a girl’s face in. Not only was it very different from the aggression we faced as kids, where it’d be one or two girls having a bit of a yell at each other, or one or two lads – I never saw the Billy Casper/Kes kind of fight scenes, but this was horrific. As I stood, trying to call the police, calm things down and move them on, my phone and my camera were stolen from my hands by two Asian youths who sprinted off.

I was shoved about a bit and luckily the police found the boy who’d done that, but he could shed no light on who had done this to me. What sickens me is that I thought it could have ended so much worse, with me dead, not just with a couple of shoves and a stolen camera and phone. It also makes the kids of Essa Academy seem like lawless hooligans – a far cry from how they used to be. You give kids ipods to revise with, and they become savages. Re-branding has done nothing. It horrifies me that it could have ended more like this:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/manchester/8639113.stm

http://menmedia.co.uk/news/s/1228489_teen_charged_with_cody_turners_murder

http://www.theboltonnews.co.uk/news/8118353.Facebook_row_led_to_tragedy_for_Cody_Turner/

Cody Turner, a teenager stabbed in Bolton for confronting someone… how quickly it escalates

http://www.theboltonnews.co.uk/news/4764026.Teenagers_wearing_Essa_Academy_uniforms_attack_woman/

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/merseyside/7176471.stm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/manchester/4424766.stm

I can’t begin to describe how terrifying it is to be in the middle of a baying mob of kids who will stand around and watch whilst someone in the community is robbed in front of them, who will laugh, who will barge and jostle and steal. I can’t say how utterly terrifying it is to know how vulnerable you are and that they could do anything. The police were brilliant, but because it is a Level 1 robbery, involving minors, even if they were to be caught and sentenced, they would get 36 hours community service to do over 3 months.

And I know that this wouldn’t happen in rural France. Not yet. It’s a little piece of the world where gangs of children don’t mug local residents, where the world is safe still.

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