Cameron’s cure for the ‘sick society’ is more oppressive powers for the police and more cuts.
The riots that have spread across the country need to be understood against the backdrop of racism, increasing poverty, inequality and restricted access to education.
Cameron says ‘It is clear there are things that are badly wrong in our society’ but has no understanding that his cuts agenda has created the tinderbox igniting in cities across Britain.
The government cuts to Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA) and increased tuition fees that sparked mass student protests last year are resulting in the further exclusion of young working class people.
Youth unemployment is at its highest ever levels. In London youth unemployment stands at 23 percent.
A generation of young people face either no work or at best low paid work, restricted access to education, alongside cuts to benefits and services.
As John McDonnell MP and Honorary Chair, Right to Work said, we are now
“Reaping what has been sown over three decades of creating a grotesquely unequal society, with alienated young copying the ethos of looting bankers.”
When young people have their hopes and futures ripped apart by government policies it should come as no surprise that frustration explodes into riots.
We were not alone in predicting this kind of social explosion – during the election campaign Nick Clegg predicted riots if the Tories were elected.
Government and bankers’ greed created both the economic crisis and the frustrations that have led to the riots.
It is also clear that there are many unanswered questions about the police killing of Mark Duggan in Tottenham that began the riots. We now know he did not shoot at the police.
This comes after the police killings of Ian Tomlinson and Jean Charles de Menezes.
Calls for repression, water cannon, curfews and rubber bullets can only exacerbate the situation, increase volatility and further demonise and criminalise young people.
We call on everyone to support the TUC-backed protests at the Lib Dem and Tory conferences in the autumn and to step up the fight against the cuts, racism, poverty and inequality.