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Your views called for on crime and anti-social behaviour on London buses
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Posts: 104
Joined: Jun 2006

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Post: #1
23-10-2007 10:09 PM

While I deplore the actions of the drivers who shut those doors on you both, I reckon drivers do a pretty good job on the whole.

It seems to me that they have to tolerate a huge amount of rudeness, abuse, intimidation and general unpleasantness from passengers, and I'm surprised they don't flip out more often than they do.

According to the posters on the buses, 4 out of 5 buses now have CCTV, but this does nothing to prevent anti-social behaviour. I suspect that most people believe it's simply not worth the bother of reporting it as nothing would come of it.

I think it's an interesting point that people these days apparently behave in ways that they wouldn't have a few decades ago (or in other parts of the country, or in other countries, for that matter). So this begs the question of what is different about today's society?

I was recently in Barcelona, a city of three million people, and on a Friday night on the Las Ramblas (a popular street for a stroll and a drink in a cafe, roughly equivalent to the Champs Elysee or Covent Garden) there was no anti-social behaviour, no excessive drunkeness, and people of all ages, not just youngsters, could be seen in equal numbers, enjoying themselves.

Just what is the difference that makes our society so...broken (I can't think of a more suitable word)?

If you ask me, I think it's that over the last few decades, politicians have persued policies designed to help the economy by making the workforce more mobile and flexible, but this has had the side effect of many people living, working and learning in the same place for shorter and shorter periods, resulting in people not building up the kind of extensive personal networks amongst people in the local area that we used to have.

Today we don't live near our extended families; we don't know our neighbours, we simply don't know many of the people we live among, and the effects of this are that we don't care much about them, don't expect to get caught nor ostracised if we do something wrong, and can't see much point in working together to look after the area we live in and improve it for the future.

This seems to me to be the key difference between the UK today and both the UK of the past and other countries today.

So I guess the answer (if you want to address the root of the problem, not just tackle it with more policing) is to make people start to care again about their community through policies that incentivise people to stick around longer in one place, especially the area where they grew up.

Does anyone share this view or have any other theories? I'd be very interested to know.

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RE: Your views called for on crime and anti-social behaviour on London buses - Ooperlooper - 23-10-2007 10:09 PM