Monday, July 10, 2006

David Cameron: Hug a Hoodie. What the hell?

UK: This dog-sledding boy blunder swampy has been watching too many afternoon specials.

"In his speech on youth crime to the Centre for Social Justice think-tank this afternoon, Mr Cameron will praise the controversial film Kidulthood which was condemned for showing children taking drugs, sleeping together and launching "happy slap" attacks on strangers. Despite the furore over the film, Mr Cameron will argue: "Kidulthood is not about bad kids. Even the villain is clearly suffering from neglect." Turning to the gangs of youngsters in hooded tops, he will say: "The hoodie is a response to a problem, not a problem in itself. "We - the people in suits - often see hoodies as aggressive, the uniform of a rebel army of young gangsters. "But hoodies are more defensive than offensive. They're a way to stay invisible in the street. In a dangerous environment the best thing to do is keep your head down, blend in When you see a child walking down the road, hoodie up, head down, moody, swaggering, dominating the pavement - think what has brought that child to that moment." Mr Cameron will make his plea despite acknowledging that many communities are terrorised by gangs of youngsters. Mr Cameron will go on to argue that there must be tough sanctions for those who break the law. But he added: "If the consequence of stepping over the line should be painful, then staying within the bounds of good behaviour should be pleasant. And I believe that within those boundaries we have to show a lot more love."
Guess what, the problem right now is teenager punks that need to be shown that with uncivilized behavior comes severe consquences. Cameron is saying nothing new as you can go back decades reading studies and experts about showing some love to juvi deliquents to get them back on the correct path. The problem is all that horse pucky crap is the reason why you have a youth crime problem today. Teenagers aren't stupid, you show weakness and they realize they can take advantage of a situation they will do it. If Cameron wasn't stuck in some ivory tower thinking a timeout and be a good boy/girl is all it takes, he would realize it. Of course, the backlash already started.
The Tory leader faced immediate criticism from some of his own backbenchers. One senior MP said: "Most people will be horrified by this. "These young hoodlums are a real nuisance and perhaps if their parents had shown them some love that might have helped. "But their appalling behaviour and the fear they engender, particularly among older people, is quite terrible."
Telegraph's Janet Daley.
"The mistaken one first: I assume that Mr Cameron's speech (forever to be known as the "hug-a-hoodie" initiative) actually amounts to virtually nothing in policy terms. It is one more bit of mood music intended to distance him from the party's old image and prove that he is not afraid to alienate traditional Tory supporters. Unfortunately, it will also alienate traditional Labour supporters and all but a handful of the soppiest Liberal Democrats. Memo to Conservative leader: no substantial portion of the electorate now believes that the problem of anti-social teenagers can be cured by love and understanding. This is what Tony Blair, the champion weathervane of public opinion, has learnt. That is why he is galloping away from Left-liberal dogma on this matter. Teenagers who congregate in shopping malls, wearing the universally recognised uniform of the Asbo candidate, may be, as Mr Cameron says, simply trying to "blend in". It is what they are trying to blend in with that is the problem. And that problem - the anti-social street culture of modern Britain - is not going to be solved by yet more indulgence. That is what ordinary people of all political persuasions know, and what glib politicians must accept if they want to look as if they are in touch with reality."

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