Political Promise

A Nation Gripped By Fear

In Uncategorized on March 2, 2010 at 6:38 pm

Gordon Brown has stated that it is his aim to reduce the ‘fear of crime’ in communities through the implementation of larger police presence on the street.  A noble cause if ever I did see one, the mission of making all people feel more comfortable walking the streets and in their own home is an important social cause for any government and rightly or not crime will be one of the major issues of the election and in the next couple of months. I can guarantee that the Conservatives will further attempt to bring the image of ‘broken Britain’ into the minds of every floating voter in the country as a means of clinching the election. Whether this is a legitimate technique is debatable, but I don’t think we can blame any political party for this fear of ‘broken Britain’, even if their policies have not been as effective as they wished at dealing with the issues which have made Britain ‘broken’. We must look towards the greatest resource for providing information, the Media.  If ‘Broken Britain’ does exist the fear it creates is spread across the country like a disease, by the tabloid newspapers of this country. The Daily Mail website alone on its front page has such shocking stories as ‘Pensioner couple who stood up to thugs die in house blaze after mobility scooter is torched in revenge attack’ and the news that the Yorkshire ripper a man who killed 13 women is set to use tax payers money to attempt to secure release.  Two stories which, yes are legitimate in there reporting, but appear to be specifically designed to undermine any belief the reader has in the British legal system. With this constant barrage of horror stories emerging daily from the most read newspapers in Britain it is no wonder there is a bigger fear of crime , than there is actual crime.

A prime example is Nottingham my home town, when I first came to university the immortal first question was where you are from? The moment I said Nottingham a look of confused came across the faces of the numerous new students I’d meet. They then began to detail the various criminal stereotypes surrounding Nottingham, not in accusation but simply as a statement of fact. O so you’re from ‘shottingham’, some even asked in a somewhat jovial if I’d ever been attacked or shot. This is my point, I have lived in Nottingham all my life and never been a victim of crime, yet people who do not know the city see a stereotypical image which was endorsed by the media over the past 5-6 years. This is not to say that Nottingham and I’m sure Manchester, Liverpool, and Leeds cities with similar reputations do not have unacceptable levels of crime but would it not be refreshing to hear more about those times the police get it right and when the courts do pass the right sentence for a criminal.

I say to the Media ,conflict sells it always will it always has this will forever be true, but why not every so often give the people ,law enforcement, courts and even politicians of this country a break. Tell us about the Criminal which are captured every single day and how something is being done to protect not only the most vulnerable people in society, but the average person who just wants to live his life. Please give this country a bit more hope that something is being done.

Joe Raffell


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