Saturday, July 28, 2007

Crime In London

What a week it has been! A former british boxing champion is shot in the face and legs for asking people to stop smoking in a bar and a young somalian is murdered on the Stockwell Estate, by a gang of youths on bikes, wearing bandana's.

In both cases neither of the crimes have led to arrests and the longer it goes on the less likely an arrest will be made. Presumably if the Stockwell shooting was gang related then the Police have a fair idea of the gang who did it, but the other shooting has us all wondering. In this day and age of CCTV you would have thought that someone was caught on the cameras and maybe we are simply waiting for the camera evidence to be processed, or maybe there is nothing.

Following the shooting there were two people interviewed by the media, a black reverend and a young 20 /' 30 something both preaching against guns. We need the reverends of this world to be doing the work with he parents so that they are working against the kids getting involved, but the problem is a lot of the parents of these kids are either involved themselves, don't care, in prison or cannot control their children. A Major part of the fight against crime has to be peer pressure. We need more young people talking about the negativity of carrying a gun, the stupidity of revenge for idle disrespect, whatever that is. The media need to promote positive role models from the street instead of headlining the bad and ignoring the good.

The media have a big role to play in keeping our streets and children safe, they have become major influencers of opinion, look how they have kept the story for the McCanns alive and yet working class plight, whether it be murder, drug and gun abuse or just the problems of poverty are largely ignored.

Crime is not the problem, it is the symptom and we are too short termist to cure it. Triumphantly we declare that more jails are being built, its nothing to rejoice about, we should be knocking prisons down, reducing the prison population as we solve the problems that lead to crime. We are one of the worlds richest countries, surely instead of spending millions in Iraq, some of that could be directed to home to help people out of the poverty and crime gap or am I too naive!!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Croydon 50 p Building

For just over six years I worked in one of the landmark offices complexes in Croydon. Affectionately known as the threepenny bit building, if you are as old as me or the fifty pence piece building if you are younger, the building was until recently officially called the NLA Tower and is outside East Croydon Station. Built in the sixties this building was considered for demolition, last year but instead it was decided to renovate and make luxury offices with a refurbished reception. Well a couple of young Croydon lasses obviously took the refurbishment of the reception at the owners word and drove their car into reception, with the result shown in the picture. If you know the building you will remmeber the steepness of the steps going up to reception, so imagine the speed the car must have been doing to get up there. Apparently, the drivers shoe got stuck on the accelerator, which just goes to prove ladies, however good your legs may look in heels, don't wear them while you are driving.