London. Birmingham. Manchester. West Bromwich. Bristol. Wolverhampton. The list of cities seeing riots and looting is growing and with each new report coming through, the reality of this situation gets more intense, more worrying, more terrifying.
It started as a peaceful protest against the shooting of Mark Duggan by police in Tottenham, and the effect has rippled across the country at a scary speed, and it’s frightening watching cities descending, quite simply, into chaos. This is most definitely no longer about Mark Duggan.
I believe in democracy. I believe in peaceful protest. I believe in people being able to have their voices heard. But this? This is madness. Setting buses on fire. Smashing shop windows. Looting. Such a blatant disregard for human lives has no place in this society. If you want to send a message to your community, to the police, to the government, destroying your own homes, communities and cities is definitely not the way to go about it. Not even animals destroy their own habitat.
Questions need to be raised as to why it took the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, the Mayor of London and the Home Secretary days to return from their holidays whilst London was descending into chaos. Why were they all on holiday while this broke? Wrong. So, so wrong.
Down here in Plymouth, someone created a Facebook event trying to incite people to start a riot in the city centre. Stating Poundland and trading shop CEX as their looting targets (I mean COME ON, POUNDLAND?!) the event had 7 attendees when it was reported to the police. 7 complete idiots against the masses upon masses of comments condemning the event. That puts me somewhat at ease.
Tonight, Plymouth is being patrolled by police (big up to Devon & Cornwall Police and all police forces across the country who are doing an amazing job) and is safe and riot-free. I only wish the same could be said of other cities.