So what happens now?
Amidst all the calls for send rioters to prison and “throw away the key”, people are missing a fundamental point. The last Labour government criminalised a generation of young people with ASBOs, curfews and electronic tags (to name but a few), and many of those young people have already given up on ever getting a decent job or bettering themselves.
Fine, punish those caught breaking the law, but just throwing them in prison and forgetting about them doesn’t address the social issues behind this. Knee-jerk authoritarian reactions to these situations are expected, but not from people that should know better.
The riots give this country an opportunity to break the cycle of depravation and poverty that has led to this. Work with these communities, don’t punish them. Walking through Clapham holding a broom aloft may look good for the cameras Boris Johnson, but how are you going to actually solve this problem?