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Underclass & Criminality

Below are excerpts from a powerful article by poet Byron Vincent at BBC, posted and accessed 20/2/2014, along with my comments:-

"I'm from the underclass - now I'm middle class. None of my middle-class friends have been to prison, yet many of those from the estates I grew up on have done time. What are we to make of this? Either you believe that people who are born into Britain's disaffected underclass are born with criminal proclivities - a belief which I hope you find bigoted and ridiculous - or you accept that the criminal behaviour of the underclass is the direct consequence of environmental factors. If this behaviour is an environmental construct, then surely there are ethical issues in punishing it. Those with power are reprimanding those with no power, for crimes they themselves would be committing if they'd been born into a different household. To me that is not a functioning society, it's abhorrent..."

 This is why we must practise attachment parenting: build babies not jails

"The only ways to assert status in such a predatory environment were either by demonstrating a capacity for violence or indulging in certain criminal activities... Most of us were either pretty tough or, like me, did a passable impression of it, but there was one kid who didn't quite fit. He even had the temerity to hold down a job in a chicken factory. The same bloke who'd stuck the gun in my face turned up one day with an equally violent cohort [companion]. Chicken boy was singled out immediately. They kicked in his bedroom door and battered him down eight flights of stairs. We never saw him again - that was the price of being perceived to be weak. I was 16 and I had nowhere else to go. That day I made a conscious and calculated choice to behave more aggressively." 

This is why we must integrate the likes of Target Focus Training into society, to know we can practise violence when confronted by asocial violence.

"I can hear the Daily Mail now: "You all heard him, he had a choice…" and yeah, I suppose I did. The choice as I saw it was to go back to sleeping in a bus station or do whatever it took do avoid getting my head caved in by raptor-eyed sociopaths. I had a choice, but it wasn't much of a choice. In the same situation, are you sure you know what you'd do? Unless you've sacrificed a roof over your head to escape the cultural and ethical mores of a violent social group, the answer has to be that you just don't know. The purpose of these grimy anecdotes is to demonstrate that no matter what your personality type or ethical foundation, circumstance and environment play a dominant role in shaping how we behave."

 Again, this is why we must practise attachment parenting

"Sometimes those who live on the fringes of society make decisions that are outside of the law or mainstream ethical understanding because it's safer for them to do so. As I mentioned, talking to the police was out of the question, which meant that I was completely on my own in terms of protection and justice. If the police ever did intervene, they did so with blatant prejudice and with little or no regard for my safety - even if they knew my life was in danger. I'm in no way suggesting that all people from sink estates share the same behaviour and ideology. I'm specifically addressing the issue of those whose environmental circumstances have separated them from the cultural and ethical norms of mainstream society. The underclass of which I speak didn't create itself - it's a product of ghettoisation. Taking a bunch of people with social and fiscal problems and forcing them to live en masse together is an idiotic idea that is destined to create a culture of perpetually spiralling criminality. If we want the disenfranchised underclass to adopt the morality of the mainstream, social housing needs to be integrated into mainstream society. That means individual houses among the private residences. Social housing estates shouldn't be these separate isolated places that keep poor people out of sight and mind. That model is not only distasteful - it clearly breeds problems that affect everyone."

Ghettoisation reminds me of apartheid. It speaks of inequality and oppression by capitalism or socialism. 

So, we need social housing integrated into mainstream society. To achieve this, we need a far more equal society that is NOT based on capitalism nor socialism. 

We also need green spaces, connection to nature, and aesthetic architecture. 

"Maybe you're of the opinion that these social problems aren't anything a stint in prison wouldn't fix. Prison suffers from an exaggerated form of the same issues that sink estates do, in that it's a culture where in order to get by you have to engage in a hierarchical system that places murderers at the top of the tree. People from underprivileged backgrounds are far more likely to go to prison anyway. When they return they bring prison's very literal survival-of-the-fittest mentality into a domestic environment, and the two cultures evolve in unison." 

This is why we must build babies and thereby minimise the use of jails. 

Jails are not useful for correcting social problems. Jails are useful for keeping asocial predators away from society. But they are not the way to fix the reason why asocial predators are being created. The onus is on society and state and each of us to improve our lives, to correct social problems. 

On a personal and family level, attachment parenting is one way. 

On a societal and state level, the promotion of natural family living is one way. 

"We are still bombarded with reactionary histrionics from politicians designed to win votes by feeding fear and ignorance. Meanwhile nothing genuinely helpful is being done to curb the problem of the growing criminal subculture within Britain's underclass. It baffles me how those in power expect those at the bottom of the social and economic ladder to behave responsibly when the architects of the issues they face take no responsibility for their part. I hope that next time you have to pass through a dodgy estate and you worry about getting robbed or worse, that you extend that concern to those who live there."

We are all cells within the body that is humanity. We are all interconnected. Any disease, like criminality and violence, is a reflection of sickness within society. So, when we see a criminal, it is important to ask what it is we are not doing right to create people that behave that badly. This applies at all levels: individual, family, community, state, culture. We must, amongst many other strategies, practise attachment parenting and natural family living.


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