Kids


By Stephen Pollard
August 16, 2007
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There's a very sensible post at Harry's Place on 'killer kids'.

So, it's now a huge social problem. The nation's children are out of control and killing each other and killing adults who give them a mouthful.

...This is puzzling to most. After all, we have banned smacking, so this generation of children haven't learned that violence is a valid means of settling disputes, and teachers now run the classroom by consensus rather than authority, which demonstrates - well something fuzzy and warm too.

At the risk of sounding like a tabloid journalist - but I want to throw the idea out there - is the net result that kids no longer understand the consequences of violence, are frankly out of control, and teachers are too afraid to run the school and parents practically impotent at home.

But fear not. The Home Office has found the answer.

According to The Times, junior Home Officer minister Meg Hillier has said that drunken pop stars and discounted booze at supermarkets is to blame.

Really? If my generation had emulated our poster boys (like Jim Morrison, Lou Reed, Sid Vicious and the like) instead of just wearing their T-shirts we'd never have made our 30s. And are we supposed to believe that previous generations of kids didn't binge drink? Haven't they watched Woodstock, or Quadrophenia, or Rude Boy...

And cheap supermarket cider? Supermarkets can't sell to the underage, so if underage drinkers are getting their hands on the stuff, who is buying it for them?

...Perhaps the kids are out of control because we refuse to control them. Instead we seek to manipulate them through dubious means like 'pop star role models' and price fixing of beer.

Quite. There are a variety of causes behind such behaviour. Children without a resident father. Parents unwilling or afraid to discipline their children properly. Teachers unwilling or afraid to discipline their children properly. Police behaving as a branch of social work. And police and CPS refusal to back those who stand up to thugs, rather than prosecuting them.

Supermarket drink prices have nothing to with it. As Brett says, 'Supermarkets can't sell to the underage, so if underage drinkers are getting their hands on the stuff, who is buying it for them?'.

You'll have to wait until September 2008 for my full thoughts on this, in my next book...



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