The Sun - 100% right on this one

#1
BRITAIN is in mourning today.

For the appalling murder of Rhys Jones. For the society we have created and for the new depth to which it has sunk.

That little boy’s killing is a defining moment for our country, perhaps even more so than those of poor Damilola Taylor and James Bulger.

For if there is one shred of hope from it, it is that it may force us to consider how we have gone so badly wrong and how we can put things right.

It is time for the Government and the judiciary to radically rethink the derisory sentences handed down to young criminals. It is time for police to go back on the beat and for the Home Office to sanction a huge increase in their numbers.

Most crucially, it is time for blighted communities to rise up against the gangs that terrorise them. Not through vigilantism but through group action, a new spirit of co-operation with police and a zero-tolerance approach to crime.

In every home it is time for parents to look at how they are raising their children, the values they instil in them, the freedoms they allow them.

The deaths of Damilola and James are ingrained in the national psyche. Their last images — James being abducted from a Merseyside shopping centre, Damilola skipping through Peckham just minutes from death — still have the power to shock.

Even so, Britain has become numb to the shootings and stabbings of so many young people on our streets this year.

Perhaps it will take the murder of Rhys, an 11-year-old Everton fan, a little Wayne Rooney in the making, finally to jolt us into a fundamental change in our behaviour.

For too long we have recoiled at pictures of children carrying guns in Somalia, the West Bank or Baghdad while we naively disregarded the fact that they could just as easily have been taken in Moss Side, Peckham or even Croxteth.

On Wednesday evening, in broad daylight, one such teenage assassin ended the life of an innocent child and pedalled off on a BMX bike.

It is unimaginably shocking. Yet the Home Office reaction was dismal. Home Secretary Jacqui Smith seemed in denial, unable to grasp the gravity of the situation, parroting the usual massaged statistics purporting to show the Government winning the war on crime.

How our hearts sank as she announced an increase in Labour’s ludicrous “acceptable behaviour contracts” — worthless pieces of paper suitable only for parents taming unruly toddlers. Hardly a frontline weapon against hoodies with handguns.


Gordon Brown, we believe, understands this is a watershed moment. And he must force the Home Office to act.

Just one deterrent will make a world of difference: Existing stiff sentences for carrying guns and knives MUST be applied.

Ministers boast of how they have upped the jail terms for carrying a knife from two to four years. They never mention that only one in ten thugs caught with a blade ever sees the inside of a prison cell.

The other nine get away with a fine, a community sentence or, heaven help us, a caution. There’s not one wannabe gangster afraid of those odds.

Minimum “tariffs” on life terms are absurdly low. Far too few life sentences mean life. The Learco Chindamos of this world carry out terrible crimes only to swan out of jail in their mid-20s with all of their lives ahead of them.


The numbers of police on the beat are a national scandal. It is little wonder armed gangs roam free when they fear nothing but other armed gangs.

Nine out of ten police are stuck behind a desk. This has to end. We need proper police. Not community support officers. Proper police, respected by the lawful majority, feared by the lawless. And many more of them too.

Doubling the current 130,000 will cost £4.2billion. It’s less than the Government will spend on ID cards and far less than the savings from the dramatic crime reduction which would surely follow.

Cheap alcohol fuels the violence. Yet as a society we accept alcopops, booze marketed specifically at kids, and we regard binge-drinking as a bit of a joke.

A failing education system is at the root of the problem. It begins in primaries, where endless inflexible tests and targets lead to a quarter of our kids unable to read and write.

Hordes of these youngsters later leave secondary school with no hope, a chasm between them and the joyful teenagers pictured yesterday tearing open their stellar GCSE results.

Small wonder they rely on gangs to give them self-esteem — plus a black market income the world of work will never offer them.

As far as guns and drugs are concerned, the horse has bolted. Over the last decade our porous borders have allowed both to flood in and it is a near-impossible problem to reverse. Despite the handgun ban after Dunblane, many cities are now awash with them.


And so to the communities themselves. Yes, they are often shamefully served by the police. But they are complicit by their own apathy, by their acceptance that this is their bleak lot.

And by their refusal to help bring killers and thugs to justice — by “standing off from the police”, in the words of the Bishop of Liverpool.

Neighbours MUST help police end the spiral of violence. Police, in turn, MUST protect their informants’ identities.

The zero-tolerance strategy of New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani worked in his city because, after decades under the cosh of crime, its citizens were ready for change.

New Yorkers welcomed the massive influx of police, worked with them and reaped the benefits of a spectacular fall in crime.

No stone was left unturned by Giuliani’s police chief Bill Bratton. In Britain, vandals caught smashing a window might get a caution at best.

In New York they were punished severely. To let them get away with it sent the message that the community did not care about that crime or any other.

This change of mindset can happen here if we have the will. The Bishop of Liverpool, the Rt Rev James Jones, optimistically predicts Rhys Jones’ family will feel the “solidarity of the whole city as it turns away from violence and champions a better way of life.”

Let’s hope he’s right. In Liverpool and everywhere else.
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http://www.thesun.co.uk/article/0,,31-2007390401,00.html
 
#2
How many more before they act? New laws are one thing but the implementation of current ones would do. A message to these kids that you will be punished and cannot behave like this must be enforced.
 
#3
no respect for the police and teachers from either kids or the parents, and always the chance of being taken to court for standing up to these people, look at the thread of the rail guard getting sacked for doing his job.....................

Duncan
 
#4
Great idea - but this government hasnt got the stomach for it. Any tough laws they try and introduce will be voted out by the House of Lords, in case it infringes Human Rights.
 
#5
I saw Jacqui Smith on Sky News yesterday and she uttered the fiollowing words "Trust me............."

What is really scary is that after a few days the furore will die down - the great British Public have now been battle innoculated against this type of behaviour.
 
#6
Stats are all they preach, and unfortunately they are the stats that they like.... not the stats that prove what they are doing isn't working.

It doesn't matter who is in power, they just don't give a damn.

Like has been said already, how many more children.?
 
#8
NOTHING will change until the diabolical Yuman Writes laws are binned, and for that to occur we have to withdraw from the EU.
 
#9
A STRONGER DETERRENT is what is needed folks. Jail and sentencing must relate to the crime. Again so called intelligent MP's are walking about with thier heads up their rear ends and don't want to know what goes on in the real world.Any weapon used or any implement used in a crime should carry a mandatory sentence of ten years minimum and they forfeit their "SO CALLED HUMAN RIGHTS" immediately a crime is committed.Take them away from society and let us all live in a secure and peaceful society without the knifemen and gunmen and most of all ban those stupid games that the youngster are playing when they are taught to kill on a computer.
 
#10
BuckFelize said:
NOTHING will change until the diabolical Yuman Writes laws are binned, and for that to occur we have to withdraw from the EU.
The dear old EU has very little in reality to do with our Human Rights Law, we signed up to the ECHR way back before the EU was even tought of so being in the EU or not really makes very little difference. Now I would agree that in some ways we have both applied and interpreted the ECHR to our own disadvantage, but it is not HR legislation that is causing the problem, it is the reality that we do not detect or convict enough of the little anti social b*st*rds that roam our streets. Equally gang violence and death on our streets is not new, I can remeber pop singers in the 50s heading up anti gang campaigns, and random stabbings by teenage thugs when I was at school.

We need the police to get out of their cosy plod stations and get out on the streets and start enforcing the laws we already have, then we need the CPS to do their job properly and prosecute the little scrotes. It is not cheap booze, we have the most expensive in Europe, it is the failure to enforce the law. It is not HR legislation it is our failure to enforce the law.
 
#11
I've no doubt Neu Liebor will rush through some new law or other in a high profile "look we're doing something" bid to placate the masses, when all that actually needs doing is actually enforcing the current laws and Judges handing out the kind of stiff sentences that they already have the powers to dish out.

Or in other words, exactly the same response to Dunblane.
 
#12
TartanJock said:
A STRONGER DETERRENT is what is needed folks. Jail and sentencing must relate to the crime. Again so called intelligent MP's are walking about with thier heads up their rear ends and don't want to know what goes on in the real world.Any weapon used or any implement used in a crime should carry a mandatory sentence of ten years minimum and they forfeit their "SO CALLED HUMAN RIGHTS" immediately a crime is committed.Take them away from society and let us all live in a secure and peaceful society without the knifemen and gunmen and most of all ban those stupid games that the youngster are playing when they are taught to kill on a computer.
Until we actually start catching the scrotes and prosecuting them jumping up and down about the lengths of sentences will do b*gger all good. Detection and conviction has to come first, and at present because most of the plods are not actually out on the streets we are not dectecting the majority just the headline grabbers.
 
#13
Cant really blame the EU for this.
Our glorious leaders pick and choose sections of Human Rights legislation as they see fit.
It seems extraordinary that the UK can ignore Human Rights legislation to enable them to enforce Gatso speeding fines but not to deal with murderers.
 
#14
RABC said:
Great idea - but this government hasnt got the stomach for it. Any tough laws they try and introduce will be voted out by the House of Lords, in case it infringes Human Rights.
Sad but true. :evil:
 
#15
Want to fre up some more money for the police and prisons? Get rid of the damed Quangos!! Makes my blood boil at the idea of there being little "focus groups" sat round tables in Whitehall talking shoite all day and being paid a fortune to come up with "suggestions" that are based on some kind of New Labour Liberal fantasy world
 
#16
Jolly_Jack said:
I've no doubt Neu Liebor will rush through some new law or other in a high profile "look we're doing something" bid to placate the masses, when all that actually needs doing is actually enforcing the current laws and Judges handing out the kind of stiff sentences that they already have the powers to dish out.

Or in other words, exactly the same response to Dunblane.
Surely you're not suggesting that the ban on the legal holding of handguns has failed to eradicate gun crime from the streets?
 
#17
So the knee jerk reaction of removing firearms from registered users really worked in keeping gun crime under control. Blow me bLiar et al........

Basically the Human Rights act is allowing the criminal to thumb their nose at justice with the well paid help of seedy lawers assisting, continuing to dilute what little justice we have.

I agree with the forum that the tariff sentences at present are pathetic. Life without the possibility of parole should be used as a deterrent.

fastmedic
 
#18
fastmedic said:
So the knee jerk reaction of removing firearms from registered users really worked in keeping gun crime under control. Blow me bLiar et al........

Basically the Human Rights act is allowing the criminal to thumb their nose at justice with the well paid help of seedy lawers assisting, continuing to dilute what little justice we have.

I agree with the forum that the tariff sentences at present are pathetic. Life without the possibility of parole should be used as a deterrent.

fastmedic
It's a bit like taking cars from registered/insured users! The state is penalising law abiding citizens by removing their rights to legally posess firarms. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I would hazard a guess that the firearms being used are not registered, and neither are the people using them!!!

Bring back labour camps.
 
#19
.........perhaps if the Chief Constable of Merseyside, and the collection of creatures that comprise the Policing Authority, got together and decided that crime prevention (ie feet on the street and a zero-tolerance policy) took priority over crime reaction (consisting of horrified gasps and pledges to work with the 'community' to further reduce the already considerably improved crime statistics), then things just may improve.

To give you a flavour of where the Chief Constable's pris and use of resources sit I commend to you the following:

......a riveting 158 page document on how to respect gypsies and assorted travelling detritus.

http://www.merseyside.police.uk/Docs/aboutus/policies/gypsy-traveller.pdf

.......a full 15 pages on the problems of the 'Transgendered' Bde compiled by that ace crimestopper Sgt C Wathan.

http://www.merseyside.police.uk/Docs/aboutus/policies/Transgender_Policy.pdf

.......similar tripe about homosexuals, this time 36 pages.

http://www.merseyside.police.uk/Docs/aboutus/policies/Lesbian_Gay_and_bisexual_Policy.pdf

......and to cap it all 22 pages on the 'Gender Equality' scheme the force is running.

http://www.merseyside.police.uk/Docs/aboutus/Merpol GES Merlin Jun 07doc.pdf

Bernard Hogan-Howe - making Merseyside a safer place.
 
#20
There is no point blaming the police for the amount of scum on the streets, whenever one of these little turds gets nicked he is safe in the knowledge that the courts wont do anything. What we need is a judiciary that is more in touch with the needs of the populace. As it stands they are effectively able to sit in their chambers safe in the knowledge that they can give out pathetic, pointless sentances are in reality unaccountable.
 

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