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Have a go

This Government won't let you take action against criminals
Here it comes – the advice you've all been waiting for. A Home Office minister is going to tell you what to do about crime and anti-social behaviour. Watch your television screens tonight and you will be given the official word on how you – being the concerned, responsible citizen that you are – can take back control of your neighbourhood in the spirit of that rousing governmental slogan, "Don't moan, take action: it's your street too." Let me give you a preview of what you can hear this evening.

Panorama presenter Jeremy Vine asks Tony McNulty, the deeply underwhelming minister for police and security, what exactly the individual should do when faced with a nasty incident in the street. Should he "step in", in the spirit of that admonition to "take action", this being his street and all?

Mr McNulty replies in a tone that sounds rather less enthusiastic than his Government's slogan: "I think the general line must be to get in touch with the authorities and make sure that, if things are as bad as you paint, the police will be there as quickly as they can."...

What should you do – retreat and call the police? Mr McNulty responds rather confusingly: "I think you should in the first instance. It may well be [that] simply shouting at them, blowing your horn or whatever, deters them and they go away."...

You can "try some distractive [sic] activities". Such as? Mr Vine offers, presumably not without a hint of sarcasm, "jump up and down", and Mr McNulty replies in the best Blairite demotic style: "I would say you know sometimes that that may well work."

Pafuckingthetic - leave policing to the police, teaching to the teachers and politics to the politicians, stay at home behind locked doors watching dross on the telly! No wonder we are in the mess we are in.

As an aside - I note in the village that there is a notice up for the name of the vandal who ripped some wing mirrors off, with the promise of "suitable" punishment in store. Plod has been round asking a few questions as well, I bet I know which approach will work.


Is this the town of Keystone? Pathetic - if they're engaged in some disreputable activity that seemingly requires a citizen to "take action," then all the horn blowing and shouting is only going to attract attention upon the citizen, upon whom they will begin to commence further "activity." If you can't defend yourself then it's no use already.

Sounds like 400 a.d. all over again. There is some record that the Romanized Britons had no weapons and could not defend themselves from predatory barbarians. The Romans did not like civilians to be armed. When the Romans said arrivederci, the Britons had to learn to make and use weapons all over again. They apparently did not so so quickly enough to defend themselves from their imported Germanic mercenaries or the mercenaries' friends and families who came after.

In Rapid City, South Dakota (thirty miles northeast of Deadwood), yesterday was the last day of the annual stock show and rodeo. Over two hundred thousand visitors (many armed) whooped and hollared, rode bulls and horses called "Lunatic Fringe" to celebrate the annual competition of man over beast.

Prodigious amounts of liquor were consumed, some washing down hot chili that would wake up Eisenhower. Sadly, there were no yella bellies that needed an ass kickin, so the cowboys went home today without getting the opportunity to kick some ass.

Our boys get a little rambunctious and would enjoy visiting with some of your "vandals". If you would be kind enough to send a few over, we promise that if they ever return, they will be be enlightened.

The one advantage of advice this lame, is that a citizen who will defend themselves may so surprise the attacker that they break off their attack.

I used exactly this strategy on three occassions in Manchester, dealing with direct assults with more force than the criminals every expected to meet.

In each case definative action improved my odds, resulted in immediate ceasation of the attacks, and "rough justice" was handed out to the criminally inclined.

And it was a damn sight more fun than getting beat & robbed myself.

I was taught this strategy by a German Polizi officer while in the forces, his lesson has stuck with.

McNulty exists in some sort of fantasy world - a world where there is apparently no consequence for such stupid talk as his advice. He should come down to the streets and see how badly his advice would work.

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