The Wilted Rose

Charting Labour meltdown 2007-2010

It is time for the Government to get a grip on teenage gun crime

Again there is the heartbreaking image of another child in a football shirt whose life has been ended violently (an image that has moved the nation, just like the earlier killing of 10-year-olds Holly and Jessica), another  family’s lives torn apart.  And yet we are no further on since last year’s murder of Kiyan Prince and that of many other teenagers across the UK.  A feature of the recent murders is that the perpetrators and the victims are both children (usually teenagers).  What is striking – and all the more tragic – about the murder of Rhys Jones is that he appears to have been caught in the crossfire.  And he was only 11.

What is even more alarming is that Croxteth Park, where the murder took place, is a middle-class area (bordering some tough estates, including Croxteth) and one of its councillors is a Liberal Democrat.  The truth is that under Labour the country has become more dangerous, especially if you are young and live in a city (particularly London); and the Government has simply not got a grip on teenage crime.

The Times recently published a factfile revealing that no fewer than 10 kids have been shot or stabbed to death this year already.  Their killers (or, in some cases, alleged killers) are frighteningly young and the young murderers (or alleged murderers) have bleak life stories often involving abusive parents, family breakdown, etc.

The Government needs to get a grip on this menace that is blighting the UK’s cities, which is not something that is likely given the failure of a succession of lacklustre Home Secretaries (John Reid actually looked like making some progress, but didn’t last very long in the job, and Jacqui Smith could still prove herself).  But we are not holding our breath for Labour to make any progress on this issue.  That in itself is a major tragedy.

15.23 Update: An excellent article by Jock Coats argues that Government policy is responsible, and he also points to some helpful insights from Kids’ Company’s Camila Batmanghelidjh in today’s Independent.

25 August, 2007 Posted by | crime, general election, Gordon Brown, guns, Jacqui Smith, kids, Labour Party, London, politics, social breakdown | 5 Comments