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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Knife crime statistics show drop - and then Xmas came...

IT SEEMED like better news at the start of this December - a 16% fall was recorded in numbers of criminals who were sentenced or received cautions for carrying knives and offensive weapons.

However, now we stare in dismay at news headlines about the brutal gang-style slaying of Seydou Diarrassouba in London's Oxford Street and other Christmas stabbing murders in Liverpool (Gaynor McGlyn), Rochdale (John Lee Barrett), Nottinghamshire (Gillian Woodward), Sheffield (Joshua Green) and Hackney, London's east end (Kirsty Treloar) - and I saw another knife murder was committed in Portland in the south west of England (Martin Rusling). And then there's the shooting in Salford of Anuj Bidve and mass shootings of three people at Peterlee (Susan McGoldrick, Alison Turnbull and her niece Tanya, and Laura McGoldrick).

What gets into the mind of these mind-numbing killers :'-(  ??

(Stop press:  I've started to lose count of the number of stabbings being reported at Christmas 2011, most of them fatal; it's horrendous and terrifying - Chris Bergin, Catherine Wynter, Scott Cooke, Bronius Juras, Walter Keeling... This must be stopped but how...?)

Latest knife crime data from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ):

Official knife crime statistics showed that between July and September 2011, there were 5,466 offences reported by police compared to a higher figure of 6,490 over the same three months in 2009.

The MoJ said offences by adults had fallen from 5,237 to 4,561 (13% less) while the drop in numbers of juveniles seems to have been much more significant with those caught carrying knives and weapons dropping from 1,253 to 904 (28% decrease).

In addition, numbers of knife criminals imprisoned upon conviction of possession of blades or offensive weapons stood at 21%, the lowest figure since Q2 in 2008 when tougher court sentences were implemented to tackle knife crime.

  • In Scotland, Tories claim knife-related murders have increased to a ten-year high with one-in-six court convicted knife crime offenders failing to be jailed.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Consider me human before you stab me

What goes through people's minds when thinking on stabbing someone? Intense desire to 'stop' the victim, to be the powerful hunter rather than the fleeing hunted, some fleeting warped sense of control?

Well, if you're thinking about using a knife to wound or kill, sticking the knife in, try thinking about the person, the human being, before deciding a knife attack will solve something.

I was struck by the lyrics of a record, from quite a few years ago, with lyrics that value human life...

Consider me firstly
A human sound.
Consider me
More to wonder at than pass by,
(or to stab)
More to treasure than justify.
Consider me moving,
Easily moved.
Consider me
More to celebrate than decry,
More to love than to deny.
(or to kill)

Consider me equally different,
Consider me beautifully plain.
Suffering to flower
(pretty much all of us struggle in this life)
But dreaming of rain.
Consider me easily outnumbered
(when chased by a gang)
But certainly sane.
Picture me sleeping
And dreaming of rain.

Consider me wanting,
Keen to give.
Consider me
More to recognise than dismiss,
More to be than this.
(no-one deserves to be stabbed)

- written by Billy Franks / Lee Hirons, played by Faith Brothers

You can click here to hear an excerpt of 'Consider Me'; think it captures the essence of living. No-one deserves to be stabbed.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Knife crime statistics: political battleground?

Knife crime has been apparently somewhat of a political battleground with some political jockeying apparently for a leading position by the political parties (or is it political argy-bargy)?


While recently the coalition government was working to show itself as dealing with the problem, the Labour party has also been trying to show itself working on the issue.


According to the Children & Young People Now website, the Metropolitan Police report knife crime in the capital is 'broadly' up by 15.2% in April to October 2011 versus the same period in 2010 (see 'knife crime soars' story).


However, Labour claim use of knives to threaten in London is up 23%.


The divisive nature of party politics makes it difficult to envisage the parties being united to tackle knife and violent crime... or maybe it's happening... no-one's criticised the other side for awhile at least, as far as I have observed.


That's a step forward - good, because people have been dying and injured. All decent people must focus to stop more death and injury happening.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Goldman Sachs Richard Sharp on BBC Newsnight

I just watched Richard Sharp, a former 'chief' at Goldman Sachs, on BBC Newsnight try to justify financial collapse and misery for millions (and a recent increase in knife crime), and thought I would make a comment...

He, and others like him, are greatly responsible for the current world financial mess. It's an unjustifiable position. Look at the dying. He needs to become a nurse and care for those who have been devastated by financial money men's ceaseless, slave-ish demands for 'return' and poor business decisions of the past.

Anyway, we all should look ahead, learn from the past, and then make positive plans for improvements in the future to reduce knife and violent crime

Not sure about this knife crime post. Maybe it should be deleted or added to... but I just watched Goldman Sachs' Richard Sharp and clearly saw a flawed, idiotic generation... People have died, been shot, knifed to death - and business, finance, the rich are at least partly responsible for not helping to build a better society.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Knife and violent crime rise in 2011 highlights blame 'game'

IT CAN'T be a coincidence knife and other violent crime is now rising as economies and poor past financial management in international trading cities such as the City (London) and across the UK + world continue to wreak havoc all around.


And, for the safety of the general public, today's news that a new law will be introduced to lock up knife-carriers seems most appropriate - see article in The Guardian - Knife crime teenagers to be jailed.


(For reference, this post is based on publication of some knife crime statistics showing more people are now facing blade attacks, apparently, an increase from 13,994 to 14,980 - and violent crime is up 10% to 1.15 million - although I can't see when these figures are compared to or a verifiable source for them on the web except this newspaper story in The Sun.)


Observing politicians and the rest of us as economic contagion spreads and some related societal breakdown and misery become evident, it is clear the issue is most serious.


Who (and what) is to blame for the contagion misery continuing to work its way out of the economic system? Opinions are most serious - they influence political and societal thinking - and who has done poor jobs, helped to make it happen?


Those with security jobs are charged with protecting us - but more people are likely to be injured or die at present - so they and their masters (or mistresses) want to point out "it's not our fault, it's the economy", so 'don't sack me from my job'.


Those looking after economic matters - from City business adviser types and senior bankers right down to the one-man businesses, and even those running household budgets - are thinking "it's not my fault, it's all sorts of other things" so 'don't sack me from my job'.


At a most simple level, people need to stop running scared, stop arguing and stop being in self-preservation mode. Calm down, support each other, eke out peaceful effective solutions... for the greater good. If only that would happen.


If not, more people will die or get injured from knife crime or other violence - and then all those arguing are likely to be at fault for wasting time shouting and not mapping out solutions. I get the feeling no-one knows what the important things are to do... (Tory MPs Theresa May and Kenneth Clarke take note). Maybe I'm wrong - what do you think?

Monday, October 17, 2011

Anti-capitalists help anti-knife crime campaign

I FIND the Occupy protests a little surreal. After years highlighting the fact (through this blog) that defeating knife crime - and other violent crime - also requires corporate and societal greed to dissipate, it is almost bemusing to see ordinary people + anti-capitalists coming together to protest along the same lines.

"You are turning the world into a 'den of thieves' "
 - Jesus Christ speaks out

Can such protests help give back aspiration and hope to young people and those dispossessed by the current economic mess? I don't really know - but it feels like a start. Anything that contributes to driving knife crime and violence out of society deserves support.

Here are the demands of the Occupy protesters in London - Guardian article: Occupy London protest issues demands forCity of London clean-up. And in Wall Street, here are the broadly described demands... more and better jobs, more equal income distribution, less profit (or no profit) for banks, lower compensation for bankers, and more strictures on banks on negotiating consumer services such as mortgages and debit cards, cut influence of corporations - financial firms in particular - especially in politics, and they want a more populist set of government priorities: bailouts for student debtors and mortgage holders, not just for banks.

In response, an anonymous poster to this blog sent me a link to an explanatory 'lesson in economics' video rebutting such demands:



PS: I was just thinking that the protesters are perhaps scared of the negative impact of capitalism... I know I am (no home, no money, no clothes, no food etc) - and not a little fed up, of course, with 'those people and businesses at the top of the tree' continuing to line their nests and hoovering money out of everyone below them like a huge cocaine snorting pipe (come to think of it, their addiction to money is pretty much like drug abuse). That said, it seems many of us ordinary people also exhibit signs of this addiction... at least at times.

So the protest at St Paul's Cathedral, London, is not, perhaps, about "occupying" the City... it's about seeking sanctuary from the awful consequences of failed capitalism - and also making a stand against the misery it has been creating. Fear and anger are great motivators to protest - and the Christian Church, as God and Christ's representative on earth - has a duty to help those who are afraid, are the powerless, are the dispossessed, are the poor...

Having said that, we can be reminded of 'capitalist' insight given once by Winston Churchill... "There never will be enough of everything while the world goes on. The more that is given, the more there will be needed. That is why life is so interesting." That said, there is much abundance in life - and it's not all about money and possessions. Think we just need to work out how everyone can enjoy 'abundance'.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Murder rates across the world, country by country

A pioneering international crime study has been published revealing data about murders in countries across the world - and alarmingly, economic downturns have been shown to increase murder rates, with figures tending to lag behind the economy as it recovers (or worsens...  so more murders in the UK and USA maybe on their way!)


Crime statistics are usually difficult to compare across borders - but murders tend to always be reported so the figures in the study can be considered accurate.


Compiled by UNODC (the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime), the report reveals there were c.468,000 homicidal deaths on planet Earth last year.


More than a third of murders (36%) were in Africa and just under a third were on the American contintents (31%); in these global regions, the murder rate was 15-16 killings per 100k people, more than double the average of 6.9 killings per 100k for the rest of the world.

Illustrative map of murder rates on planet Earth


Murders in most countries have reduced in number since 1995, but in the Caribbean and Central America, murder numbers have increased.


Interestingly, the UK is a developed nation and can be considered relatively safer than others, enjoying one of the lowest murder rates for individual countries. I can't help speculating how our anti-gun culture helps here, especially when one considers US murder rates are tending to be double the UK's.


Two trends seem to be apparent:


1. A link exists between development and crime. Countries with low scores on the UN Development Programme’s human-development index reveal high murder rates and vice versa.


2. Exceptions to the above show another trend. Organised crime, drug trafficking, violent gang culture and the prevalence of firearms are also correlated with higher murder rates, even in relatively developed countries.


This distressing phenomenon just noted above is proven in Honduras and El Salvador. It would be wise probably not to travel to this pair of countries; they suffer the highest and second-highest global murder rates (82 killings per 100k and 66 killings per 100k resp.).


To download more detail on this report, visit the 'Homicides Study' on the website of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Terrorist attacks of 9/11... and knife, gun crime

JUST watching '9/11 Remembered' - makes you realise again how serious are the problems we face on this planet that people hate other people, a powerful country and a powerful system so much they were prepared to hijack four airliners (with passengers) and fly them into the two highest business buildings in the world and the Pentagon...

No wonder we are still at war, trying to eliminate or control those with such a fatalistic mindset. Murder and death are not the answer, that's for sure. Knives, guns, stabbings, shootings - not the answer. I daren't imagine what the nutters would do with an atomic bomb.

Sunday, September 04, 2011

When will this killing and stabbing madness stop?

ANOTHER death. How to stop this killing and stabbing madness?

Latest knife crime incident:

A 21-year-old man was being questioned by police detectives after a knifeman killed two women and left a third injured at a house.

Police called to a cul-de-sac at Ireton Court in Thame, Oxfordshire, at 2.21am on Sunday found the pair with fatal injuries.

A third woman was taken to John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford but her condition is not thought to be life-threatening, said Thames Valley Police.

According to reports, the two dead women were a mother and daughter aged in their 50s and 20s who were declared dead at the scene.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

UK riots: Knife Crime blog analysis + short comment

It was a deliberate act that I decided to refrain from adding a knife crime blog post during this millennium's first ever UK riots (I wish they are the last but another 982 years without some such civil disturbance seems very unlikely given humankind's track record to date... but I live in hope).

That said, I did make the odd somewhat reactive statement on Facebook. Making societal comments / interpretation in search of answers to depressing and unacceptable events did not go down well. One of my Fb friends and former work colleagues who lives London way gave me both barrels.

"Discipline and values" he said was absent from these morons. Very true, I thought - and societally I also thought commercial and state groups such as big business and banks have also lacked these and caused criminal outcomes such as failed economies and ruined lives.

But as he pointed out, this criminality was happening on his doorstep and there was no excuse for this abhorrent, violent, devastating and, simply, plain wrong behaviour.

We are both right, I believe. Social conditions and individual responsibility both have vital roles in this situation. What seems inescapable is that massive failure of both has occurred.

As far as knife crime is concerned, I have been pleased to support initiatives such as new laws to make knife threats an imprisonable offence. But, when you think about it, knife crime is a symptom of underlying problems. If we could work out and solve what's wrong before symptoms appear, that is obviously a better way to avoid worse situations later on.

And so the same logic can apply to the UK riots of August 2011. There seem to be many issues everyone is talking about that caused this - absence of fathers, economy, corrupt politicians, gang cultures, video games, little to aspire to, oppressive authorities, too many immigrants on a small island etc... the list of 'excuses' is, in fact, very very long.

As I watched another masked hoodie bandit head off home with a 40 inch flat screen tv (Sony, I think), I forced a wry smile to myself as I thought 'yeah mate, I think the price of them is a rip off, take it for free'.

I do believe that business has at least partly helped cause these riots. While I think that individual responsibility is the key element, business sows seeds of discontent daily, making decent homes and possessions etc unaffordable, while the world of marketing raises desires to unnatural levels in people for these things.

It happens to most of us - and for 'the poor' who can't afford most of everything, year after year, no wonder they want to get hold of what 'the rich' have. Christian author C S Lewis explained this in the 1900s - it's not a new phenomenon.

No wonder frustrations can boil over. Women seduce to get their own way, marketers do it to have you buy at a high price, decent hard-working people lose their jobs on the stroke of an accountant's pen.

Afterwards the victim feels cheated by the woman, ripped off by a retailer and deeply injured by the employer. Bad behaviour like this goes on all the time.

No wonder some group, gang or other who feels cheated or downtrodden by such things decides to riot. 'I'm getting nowhere, time to fight for a bit more respect, something better for my life'. Or even worse if they're bent on villainy, e.g. seduced by mafia-type lifestyles.

And there, I think, is an understandable way to view rioting, gang membership and perhaps criminality. We don't need an American ex-policeman / gang 'expert' to tell us that. Wonder what he can bring to the party? How many deaths are on his hands? Importing potentially right wing policing from the USA is fraught with hazard. Bloody politics. Not that the Russian mafia is something worth importing either (and we seem to have that as well). Minefield.

The behaviour, the damage, the violence, the killing can never be condoned, yet there are the inklings of explanation about why it happened. Some believe in capital punishment to deal with such wrong behaviour - a final judgement on individual irresponsibility.

My stance is not to kill - but execution can be considered the ultimate way to eradicate some symptoms of bad behaviour in society; as humankind though, we have failed to solve the root cause polluting these human beings gone wrong. And then I think 'no, these (wo)men are responsible for their actions, why give them another chance to enjoy life, they've forfeited that right, haven't they?'

Observing the permanently reactive news media this month, I couldn't help thinking of Paul Weller's lyrics when with The Jam... 'these braying sheep on my tv screen make this boy shout, make this boy scream'. That was Going Underground - and I remember during the rioting that being away from all this was what I wanted. The media coverage has been plain confusing - and unhelpful due to its reactiveness. I remember seeing Kelvin Mackenzie on (a poor) BBC Newsnight shouting like an hysterical bullying grandad about using the army to shoot the scum; typical tabloid editor reaction.

And then I watched some middle class BBC reporter trying to relate to a masked rioter - it looked ridiculous, emphasising how out of touch the UK broadcaster is with many in this country.

Trying to get away from the situation is not the answer I reckon; being part of the solution is the answer... towards better ways forward, preferably huge leaps (although it would be wise not to stay and drown on a sinking ship - and I do wonder if capitalism and commercialism, even internationalism, have major holes below the waterline at present).

What do you think? What will make our society safer, better - from rioting, from guns, from knife crime?

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Knife crime rants from the Press are no help

ANNOUNCEMENT of a new crime, 'aggravated possession', that would allow knife carriers to be jailed for threatening or intimidating others with a blade should be seen as significant progress.

However, reviewing the media since that news presented by David Cameron you get the impression everyone is trying to score partisan points over the issue.

Honestly, the press shows itself to be a poor guardian of common sense when the media decries a positive decision as a negative - The Mirror: Coalition pledge to get touch on crime shattered.

And then the Guardian similarly attacks the Government. Even the Financial Times took time to fill column inches with yet another rant. Why? To present an opposing view? It simply confuses and dilutes attempts to tackle knife and other crime.

This example of poor media coverage seems to be a prime case of too many cooks spoiling the broth; everyone's got an opinion - and it's not helping.

I wonder if we really are seeing the writing on the wall as far as a national media is concerned; they seem out of touch sometimes as far as understanding and being effective at solving real issues.

Seeing the News of the World close down is probably an example of the public's growing disenchantment, distaste and distance from that part of the media profession which works poorly (and for NOTW, who's stock-in-trade is to humiliate). Maybe it's just not a great read anymore and there isn't sufficient money in dirt digging anymore - readers are increasingly less interested in it.

Papers like the FT and the Mirror need to pay more attention to their UK audience. The challenge is to provide a cogent, useful publication that brings benefit to UK society and the readership they represent. Rants and poorly informed opinion are not up to the job.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

'Put Down The Gunz' - and knives - track gains support

DESIRE Mcneish's 'Put Down the Gunz' - and knives - campaign record is tapping into a huge groundswell of support from people who want to tackle the gun and knife crime scourge affecting the nation.

Initial filming for a video to accompany the heavy rap-beat track was first featured on this blog earlier this year (see previous post here).

It is fair to say Desire has been ceaseless organising workshops and filming across the country among many groups and individuals opposed to gun and knife crime. It has been quite a massive 'tour' of the UK for Desire as he has worked to generate interest in the track.

Just now, it is in first place of a Mqusic competition. You can vote for the track by clicking through on the banner in this post.


Vote for DESIRE MCNEISH - DESIRE MCNEISH!
Vote for DESIRE MCNEISH at MQusic
DESIRE MCNEISH — DESIRE MCNEISH
Current position: 2

Desire describes himself as a UK rapper, singer, DJ, producer, reformed gang member, and founder of People Against Gun And Knife Crime (Pagakc).

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Knife Crime blog on Facebook

I've set up a dedicated identity for this knife crime blog on Facebook at facebook.com/mark.knifecrime.

It makes a great deal of sense because it now establishes a Facebook group where people have an instant place where they can meet others who have suffered the grief and pain as victims - or friends and families - of those who've lost loved ones. It is also a meeting place for anyone who's simply been affected by knife crime, gun crime and other violence. (And there will not be so much other Facebook trivia that might be distracting or unhelpful.)

Look forward to seeing you there. And don't forget, if you have issues to raise, an account you'd like to share, let me know... through the Facebook account (facebook.com/mark.knifecrime) or via this blog.

Best wishes, let's keep the knife crime, gun crime, anti-violence campaign torch burning...

Mark Chapman.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Singer Skyler Jett backs UK knife crime campaigning

PROMINENT US singer and songwriter Skyler Jett has put his backing behind UK anti-knife crime campaigning by releasing a peace song and allowing the UK's Knife Crime blog to publish his record.

Speaking exclusively to the UK's Knife Crime blog, Skyler said: "My wife is from the UK. It's knives over there with you and guns over here.

video

You can play the peace song here: Peace Is The Answer

Renowned for being the lead singer of The Commodores, replacing Lionel Richie in 1982 (if only briefly), Skyler has also worked with greats such as Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Aretha Franklin and Stevie Wonder.

He said: "The reason young people lash out is because we've lost communication with them. They need love and guidance. We're letting them create their own reality where they think violence is the answer while I believe Peace is - and I'm ready to teach young people through music.

"I'm a humanitarian it's what I do. I'd love to come and perform for the youth reaching out to save a life sure can't hurt. I believe the change starts with us we have to be positive role models to our youth.

"Today it seems like the elders are scared of these kids but thank God there are some mentors still ready to try. Bless you for not giving up and spreading the word. We just have to keep trying to get the word out to anyone thats willing to listen."

"Count me in. Like my song says: PEACE IS ALWAYS THE ANSWER."

Skyler Jett speaks out on violence and knife crime


He said: "I want to say stop the violence; that's why I write songs about humanitarian causes. I presently live in Napa Valley Wine Country, although in my youth, I grew up in Oakland, California, which is now ranked number five in the country for high crime. Unfortunately, black-on-black crime accounts for a substantial percentage of that statistic.


"I invite you to listen to my latest humanitarian recording of "Peace Is The Answer" which I've just written and recorded following a long discussion with a friend of mine who lives in the Chicago area. We were talking about how troubling it is to see the statistics of high crime and how such an epidemic needs an anthem where we can make an earnest effort to help cease the violence, and bring communities together, not just in Chicago but the rest of the US and the world.

Being a humanitarian and a recording artist, I know only too well the importance of such an anthem and the challenge of breaking through to touch our youth and our brothers and sisters.

"I am sending "Peace Is The Answer" to you in the hope that it resonates within your heart and inspires you to pass it on to the champions of this cause.  A few days ago I watched Tom Joyner discussing this very subject on CNN."

"We would be honored if you would work with us in the Peace Movement, beginning with the promotion of 'Peace Is The Answer'."

More information about Skyler Jett - and you can check out details on Wikipedia.

He said: "As a songwriter/recording and performing artist this is one of the best ways I know to contribute humanitarily.  I will immediately begin bringing the dream to reality, in the production of a video, where all youth across the globe put their guns down simultaneously.

"Help me to pass the Peace along. Put down the guns and knives. Peace Is The Answer!"

Friday, April 29, 2011

Latest knife crime statistics - Spring 2011

Numbers of crimes using knives last year (2010) have fallen 4.26% - total 'knife crimes' are recorded by police as 29259 which is 1301 less than 2009.

Can't help thinking the work of anti-knife crime campaigners everywhere is helping make this difference. We can take some credit for that significant drop, hopefully. That said, with all statistics, a healthy scepticism and closer examination is pretty much always required.

Still, looks like progress, and if these latest knife crime figures convey a reasonable picture of progress, we can consider that our campaigning works and we need to stay strong and focused on improving the work done so far and dripping the anti-knife crime message into our communities and those inclined to violence.

It is a mammoth mountain still to climb of course. And no-one can replace - or forget - loved ones who have been lost to blades and other weapons. Imagine these facts alone are enough to keep us pushing on though.

More statistics on knife crime:

Knife killings totalled 200 in 2010, three more than the 197 recorded in 2009. And behind that figure lies the tragedy of many people trying to re-build lives after losing loved ones.

Attempted murders using knives were shown to fall by 57 to 206, 22% less than the 263 recorded in 2009.

Closer inspection of the 2010 knife crime statistics shows robberies using knives rose to 14279, a three (3) per cent increase from recorded knife robberies in 2009 (13908).

Robbers with knives are ones to be wary of - killers in waiting. Do you know any thieves? They seem more likely to use knives so worth trying to target them.

Rapists too seem to favour using knives to get their sickening way. An 11% increase in rapes with knives has been recorded - from 213 blade rapes in 2009 to 239 last year.

Threats to kill using knives also rose year-on-year in 2010 from 1,419 to 1,454. Gun /  firearms crimes dropped seven (7) per cent last year.

Collection anomalies mean West Midlands police force figures are not included in this analysis - which means conclusions reached above might be off the mark. Can anyone send me this data?

Figures sourced from the British Crime Survey and police statistics in England and Wales via an article in The Guardian.

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Lady Gaga and Rhianna's shameful gun self-publicity

POP STARS promoting guns and other weapons is an unacceptable situation. Are the creative minds of their marketing mandarins so poor that they cannot think beyond developing campaigns that utilise killing instruments to boost public image? Too much X-Box, Microsoft, Nintendo and Playstation growing up me-thinks.

In all honesty, can't these supposedly cool music industry types think up something more original than using guns to promote celebrity musicians? The entertainers and their entourage ought to be ashamed of themselves. Here's the pictures on the web:

Lady Gaga in Rolling Stone magazine


Rhianna now sports gun tattoos



This shameful marketing and self-publicity is beyond the pale. It glorifies guns and weapons, endorses them, puts them 'front-of-mind' for impressionable young people. FFS, if you're thinking of using guns or knives in your next round of marketing, don't do it. Just try to remember many people's loved ones killed by weapons - and then do the responsible thing... dream up something better than guns and knives to sell your products.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

'Man Down'... Rihanna sings gun crime...

Leading R&B songstress Rihanna's evocative track about a killer shooting a man in Central Station, New York, is a powerful number.


While annoying that the Barbadian singer seems to focus on the feelings of the killer (victims ignored yet again), it is an excellent musical piece that creates a picture in your mind of mindless killing and a human story around it.

Some of the 'Man Down' lyrics for meditation...

I didn't mean to end his life 
I know it wasn't right 
I cant even sleep at night 
Cant get it off my mind 
I need to get out of sight 
Before I end up behind bars 

What started out as a simple altercation 
Turned into a real sticky situation 
Me just thinking on the time that I'm facing 
Makes me wanna cry 

Cause I didn't mean to hurt him 
Coulda been somebody's son 
And I took his heart when 
I pulled out that gun 

Man Down 

It's a 22 
I Call her Peggy Sue 
When she fits right down in my shoe
What do you expect me to do 
If you're playing me for a fool 
I will lose my cool 
And reach for my firearm 

I didn't mean to lay him down 
But its too late to turn back now 
Don't know what I was thinking 
Now he's no longer living 
So I'm about to leave town 

Cause I didn't mean to hurt him 
Coulda been somebody's son 
And I took his heart when 
I pulled out that gun 

Look I never thought I'd do it 
Never thought I'd do it 
Never thought I'd do it 

Oh gosh 
What ever happened to me 

Why did I pull the trigger 
Pull the trigger pull the trigger BOOM 
And end a nigga, end a nigga's life so soon 
When me pull the trigger, pull the trigger, pull it 'pon you 
Somebody tell me what I'm gonna what I'm gonna do 

Mi say wah man down (a weh mi say) 
When me went downtown 

Cause now I'm a criminal criminal criminal 
Oh Lord a mercy now I am a criminal 

Man Down 

Tell the judge please gimme minimal 
Run out a town none a dem cah see me now 

Oh mama mama mama

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Tom Cave tv interview in memory of his brother

TOP anti-knife crime interview on tv today for you to watch - young Tom Cave from Sheffield (a previous contributor to this blog) pressed home some peaceful points including the importance of putting down knives. His interview comes some seven years after the tragic loss of his brother, Chris Cave, in a stabbing incident.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

the People Against Gun And Knife Crime (PAGAKC) - video shoot

JUST a few words on the PAGAKC music video shoot... taking up an invite from music producer Desire Mcneish to participate in this anti-violence group event in the east end of London (Hanbury Street, E1).

I'm going to try to update this post with more reflections and observations etc when time allows - but important to say the focus was on conveying strong anti-knife and anti-gun message, using music to try to influence anyone thinking of carrying weapons.

London's Guardian Angels were part of the cast, as were young people from a group called Youths Against Crime.

"Put down the gunz, put down the knives" runs the beat-y, rap-py number. While it's overtones are perhaps scary or sinister sounding at first hearing, it's message is loud and full of bass: "Stop Killing!". You can hear "Put down the gunz" on youtube by clicking here.

Desire, who indicated he has experience as a gang member, has big dreams: to see knife and gun crime tackled making videos like the PAGAKC one this weekend.

Guardian Angels on set with Desire Mcneish as he directs the action 

Rich people in their polished Audi stop to ask about the video


Youths Against Crime: Cool poses to support PAGAKC


Looking forward to seeing the video; can't see it getting an Oscar, but hearts are in the right place and we're trying to make a difference against knife and gun crime... what are you doing?
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