NYC protest hits mass arrests in London
During a torrential downpour, some 20 people gathered outside the British Consulate-General in Manhattan August 15 to protest Prime Minister David Cameron’s mass arrests of youths. The multinational, multi-generational protesters, including students from England and France, chanted: “From London to New York, youth need jobs, not jails!”
More than 2,000 people – half below age 16 – have been arrested since the four-night rebellion that shook London and other British cities. The youth uprising followed the killing of a young Black father of three, Mark Duggan, by police in the Tottenham area of London on August 4. Daily police raids are continuing against suspected “rioters.”
“We know who the real criminals are,” said Larry Holmes of the Bail Out the People Movement, which called the protest. “Cameron’s government, the banks and corporations in London and Wall Street who profit from cutbacks, racism and war – they should be on trial, not the young people who already face a grim future of unemployment. What happened in London could happen here next.”
Photos by Anne Pruden and redguard
Paulo Friere, in Pedagogy of the Oppressed
He goes on to write:
Ok. Now think about this in terms of the youth of color rioting in England. Friere is describing here the justification for police/state violence against poor people who are now destroying the material property of the oppressor class. As the news insinuates, “we must arm ourselves (with police) against those dark-skinned youth who just can’t be satisfied to not have what we have all worked so hard for.”
To this, Friere would say, “you no longer are, you merely have.”
Well, Friere’s words apply perfectly in the context of WHITE PRIVILEGE. However, I have some issues with the comment above:
“youth of color rioting in England”
“poor people who are now destroying the material property of the oppressor class”
Stop making it about RACE !!! From what I have seen and read the rioters were from very diverse origins and walk of like. The idea that most of the rioters and looters were poor blacks is a TOTAL FABRICATION.
A significant number of those caught were actually middle-class. Also, they were NOT destroying “the material property of the oppressor class”, but little businesses, charity shops etc…
David Starkey blames black male culture for the London Riots. He asserts that Chavs (the white underclass) are now expressing themselves in Jamaican Patwa. Starkey clearly defines Black culture as bad and White culture as good. It’s disgraceful but predictable and how a significant proportion of Britain feel right now. This attitude is a part of the problem.
Excuse me. But there is nothing wrong with Jamaica or our patwa. Patwa is beautiful and I wish I could do more than just understand it. Patwa cannot be equated with criminal activity. Sorry, just HAD to say that. Don’t talk about my motherland.
The BBC today apologised for a live interview on its news channel in which the veteran campaigner Darcus Howe was accused of taking part in riots.
That lady who did the interview was so disrespectful it was unreal.
Photographer Amy Weston of the WENN Agency, who took what is probably the most iconic news picture to date of the London riots — a woman leaping from the window of a flat, toward the arms of persons below — tells the story of how she came upon the shot:
I was told there were fires in the Church Street area, near Surrey Street Market.
By the time I drove towards it, I could already see the fires from my windscreen.
There were six or seven people screaming and crying outside, and they looked like they lived at the flats that were burning. The flats were above small independent shops. A man in a white shirt was screaming that a girl was at the window and that she was ready to jump. He ran towards her but riot police had appeared and pulled him back, and they went to her instead.
As soon as she dropped, the crowds pushed back and there was no way to see what happened to her. I remember hearing people screaming that there were more people in the building. The crowds started getting angry with each other, with one group blaming another group for starting the fire.
There were warnings of gas cylinders being fired into the crowd from riot police so I got out of there. I couldn’t get to my car so I had to walk, wrapping my camera in my clothes to avoid being mugged.
- 4 August - Mark Duggan, 29, is shot dead by police at Ferry Lane, Tottenham. (profile)
- 6 August - Duggan’s family formally identify his body. Around 300 people gather outside Tottenham police station wanting “justice”. Bottles are thrown and it begins.
(it’s unclear who started. There are various reports online that give the blame to either the police or the protesters)
Pictures: Tottenham before & after
Article: Tottenham Riots - a peaceful protest, then suddenly all hell broke loose
- 7 August - Investigation starts after all the fires are under control. 26 police officers where injured, 55 arrests where made. Local MP David Lammy tells that community has “had the heart ripped out of it”. Later that day reports come of of windows being smashed and looting has started in various areas of London (Brixton, and more)
Pictures: Further outbreaks of violence and looting in London
Article: Second night of violence in London - and this time it was organised
- 8 August - Various police officers are injured. Scotland Yard talks about “copycat criminal activity across London in small and mobile groups.” Police talks about gangs of youth. Current reports in twitter talk of more riots in London, also possible in Birmingham (x) & Leeds.
Interesting reads (all from The Guardian):
- Brixton: could it happen again? 30 years after the riots
- Looting ‘fuelled by social exclusion’
- There is a context to London’s riots that can’t be ignored
Keep up to date:
As political and social protests grip the Middle East, are growing in Europe and a riot exploded in north London this weekend, here’s a sad truth, expressed by a Londoner when asked by a television reporter: Is rioting the correct way to express your discontent? “Yes,” said the young man. “You wouldn’t be talking to me now if we didn’t riot, would you?”
The TV reporter from Britain’s ITV had no response. So the young man pressed his advantage. “Two months ago we marched to Scotland Yard, more than 2,000 of us, all blacks, and it was peaceful and calm and you know what? Not a word in the press. Last night a bit of rioting and looting and look around you.”