Apparently it is, and apparently Camila is one of the "good people", who actually does a lot of good things for "street kids". And I don't for a moment doubt that she does.
But the article left me feeling irritated for some reason.
London has woken up to street violence, and the usual narratives have emerged – punish those responsible for the violence because they are "opportunist criminals" and "disgusting thieves". The slightly more intellectually curious might blame the trouble on poor police relations or lack of policing.
Ah. The casual dismissive attitude towards people who dare to regard a bunch of opportunist criminals as opportunist criminals. Christ knows I am no fan of the police, but what is this shit about "police relations". The police are there to give you a crime number when you get burgled, nothing more and that is to a large fucking part because they spend so much time on fucking "community relations" that they can't be arsed to police any more.
Second, for those of us working at street level, we're not surprised by these events.
Casual smugness about those living in ivory towers or not being otherwise "down wiv da yoofs, innit?" is just as unwelcome. I'm not remotely surprised by these events, and I'm not even in the street kids business.
Twitter and Facebook have kept the perverse momentum going, transmitting invitations such as: "Bare shops are gonna get smashed up. So come, get some (free stuff!!!!) F... the feds we will send them back with OUR riot! Dead the ends and colour war for now. So If you see a brother... SALUTE! If you see a fed... SHOOT!"
Twitter and Facebook were also used by the police to warn and advise, or by people telling their friends and loved ones that they were safe. I only saw Twitter and Facebook used "for good", I guess I don't follow enough opportunist criminals to see the momentum you did. So fuck you and your fatuous example.
Working at street level in London, over a number of years, many of us have been concerned about large groups of young adults creating their own parallel antisocial communities with different rules. The individual is responsible for their own survival because the established community is perceived to provide nothing.
Apart from the dole money that they use to keep themselves in dope and booze, and the fucking council house they live in. But God forbid we dare to raise the idea that these fucking twats don't deserve the largesse of the people they looted from who already pay their cost of living!
Perhaps if they weren't so fucking entitled to a place to stay and a fucking handout, they wouldn't be so fucking dismissive of "the establishment". But Camila, I'm afraid "the establishment" does not have any money of its own. "The establishment" extorts money from taxpayers and the very people who had their businesses pillaged and destroyed were helping to pay the upkeep of the scum who robbed them.
Perhaps community outreach workers and the like could actually point this out a little more to the scum who think the world owes them a living.
The insidious flourishing of anti-establishment attitudes is paradoxically helped by the establishment. It grows when a child is dragged by their mother to social services screaming for help and security guards remove both; or in the shiny academies which, quietly, rid themselves of the most disturbed kids. Walk into the mental hospitals and there is nothing for the patients to do except peel the wallpaper. Go to the youth centre and you will find the staff have locked themselves up in the office because disturbed young men are dominating the space with their violent dogs.
This utterly fucks me off.
When I grew up, I had no fucking youth cunting centre in the entire fucking town. I cannot fucking stand this shitting bollocks that we need more cunting fucking cock-sucking youth centres. It's a fucking bullshit excuse because you don't need a fucking youth centre to read a book or play a game or ride a bicycle or fucking go to a movie.
If Camila is that fucking worried about street kids, why the cunt is she promoting this lazy shit that we need youth centres at all.
What we need is a society where kids are not entitled to be entirely disrespectful of the very people who are raising them or contributing to their very survival. The endless excusing of the behaviour of these twats and constant calling for someone from the council or the government to do something to give them facilities is the very cause of the problem.
Walk on the estate stairwells with your baby in a buggy manoeuvring past the condoms, the needles, into the lift where the best outcome is that you will survive the urine stench and the worst is that you will be raped. The border police arrive at the neighbour's door to grab an "over-stayer" and his kids are screaming. British children with no legal papers have mothers surviving through prostitution and still there's not enough food on the table.
Precisely because the estates are free. If you don't pay for something, it has no fucking value to you. The state doesn't give a flying fuck, it's not the state's actual money, and the people who live there don't give a flying fuck because they don't pay for it.
Why should British children have papers? What fucking bullshit point are you trying to make here?
Mothers surviving through prostitution is awful if they don't want to be prostitutes, but why is there not enough food on the table? Is it not perhaps because the mother is choosing to spend the money on something else? What is this shit? Assuming the mother gets a tenner a trick and does one a day, that's enough to feed a family of four, if you're not living off fucking Dominos or KFC. What is this shit?
It's not one occasional attack on dignity, it's a repeated humiliation, being continuously dispossessed in a society rich with possession. Young, intelligent citizens of the ghetto seek an explanation for why they are at the receiving end of bleak Britain, condemned to a darkness where their humanity is not even valued enough to be helped.
What the actual FUCK is this shit? If they're young and intelligent, they can get off their fucking arses and get a job or start their own business. What fucking "help" does a young and intelligent person need? How about a fucking kick up the arse?
Savagery is a possibility within us all. Some of us have been lucky enough not to have to call upon it for survival; others, exhausted from failure, can justify resorting to it.
Oh pass me my violin, Camila. Seriously. If Britain was a country where success wasn't vilified and denigrated, where the people who work the hardest and pay the most tax weren't insulted with demands to have more of their money stolen to feed and clothe and house the feckless and the lazy and the entitled, that would help more.
I've been on the fucking bones of my arse more than once, not knowing how I was going to feed and clothe my family and the thought of looting a 52" LCD TV never entered my mind. I have "failed" completely more than once and lost everything. I'm still here, I'm still raising my child and I'm not fucking setting fire to the livelihood of people more fortunate than myself.
It costs money to care. But it also costs money to clear up riots, savagery and antisocial behaviour. I leave it to you to do the financial and moral sums.
Or in English: "give me some money to salve your conscience".
But no, fuck that I say.
It doesn't cost money to care. Throwing money at problems like this, rather than individually taking responsibility for raising our own children and keeping them on the rails makes this whole fucking thing worse, a lot worse. Caring costs effort.
And that is one thing that we seem desperately unwilling to give.