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Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Daily Mail embraces knife headlines

MEDIA language can be insensitive and unhelpful when trying to encourage more peaceful way of conversation and writing. While not ignoring the fact that knife attacks will continue, whatever we say, it must be helpful to think about what we say when talking about violence. war, killing, death penalty etc... Here the Daily Mail headline - compiled by 'Pete Dew' writing these notes via the blog's comments box:

He said: "I quote the Daily Mail newspaper. Here are just SOME of the 'knife' headlines the Daily Mail has used in the last few years, despite according to last statistic in the media a knife crime every 24 minutes:

  • 'Blair buddy puts knife in Brown' (Double Page spread) 
  • 'Doctors have knives out for kitchen tools.'
  • (The article explains that the tools referred to are kitchen knives) 
  • 'Who will wield the knife?' (Double Page spread)
  • 'Knives are out' (The headline in Peter Hitchen's column printed mid-knife amnesty, arguing that the amnesty would be a complete failure) - youngsters tell me that "knives are out" means "get the knives out".
  • 'Knives are out for Orliath'
  • 'After a week to forget, the knives are out' 
  • 'Why the BBC's knives are out for Osborne, Mandy is getting away with murder'
  • 'Romeo and Juliet: Knives are out for a roving Romeo'
  • 'Knives are out for marriage' 
  • 'The knives are out for Gordon after poll disaster in Glasgow' 
  • 'Usmanov's knives out for Gunners in Moscow talks'
  • 'Tom Parker Bowles gets the knives out' 
  • 'Labour loses as knives out for Tory leader'
  • 'Day of long knives as jobs cut'
  • 'Knives are out for Charlie'
  • 'Knives are out for Goldsmith...'
  • 'Knives and forks out for Ming'
  • 'Record numbers found carrying knives'
  • 'Knives are out for Lord Levy as Blair rift grows'
  • 'Now the Whitehall knives come out for the honest general'
  • 'Night of frocks and knives' [TV Showbiz]
  • 'KNIVES OUT FOR CAMILLA'
  • 'Knife deaths at record 6 a week'
  • 'Day of the long knives at City Hall as Boris axes 120 jobs'
  • 'Now they will stab him in the front' 
  • 'THE SHADOW OF THE KNIFE' (Front Page headline)
  • 'KNIVES OUT FOR GORDON RAMSEY' (Double page spread)
  • 'KNIVES ARE OUT FOR ALESHA' (Double Page spread)
  • 'KNIVES ARE OUT FOR GORDON BROWN' (Front Page headline - it was the very first time that the Daily Mail used the knives are out metaphor in headlines, July 2001)
  • 'Why no one (apart from Charles Clarke) is rushing to put the knife into...'

Sunday, November 15, 2015

News + social media coverage of Paris attacks

PERSONAL snapshot of some news and social media snippets during and in the aftermath of the terrorism attacks in Paris this weekend.

Somehow, an unerring focus on peace must continue; there is a need to be proactive, snap out of apathy to understand the causes of violence. Once a problem is defined, solutions can be developed.

Not forgetting knife crime at this time either... always trying to sow the seeds of non-violent solutions for people who think it's acceptable to carry and use knives to injure and kill others.

This week an 18-year-old became the 13th victim of a fatal stabbing in London since the beginning of 2015. In the last year, 1,651 young people have been stabbed in the capital; a 26% rise on figures two years ago.

  1. CHURCHES across the world at the 'foot of the Cross' today praying for Paris + end to murder
    Embedded image permalink
  2. WORLD is not prepared to put up with this violence... pianist's Imagine - Lennon's original
  3. WISE COMMENT for today + these times of terror: Dropping bombs on people isn’t the solution -
  4. Paris attacks: Dozens dead and hostages held at Bataclan - up to 100??
    1. Live updates as at least 35 people dead in a shooting and explosion in Paris

Friday, October 02, 2015

Killing is easy in America... murder with guns + knives, as you like

AFTER the 45th college shooting this year - with nine dead and seven injured - it appears USA politicians continue to be like ostriches, even cowardly, by not speaking up for gun restrictions in their country.

Imagine being a politician supporting gun laws - to have blood on your hands... apparently because their livelihoods are supported by the financial backing of the gun lobby.

One wonders how the conversation with many of these Christian people's God might go. Not unlike President Obama's speech below, possibly with 'go to hell' at the end of it...

"Somehow this has become routine" said Obama. "The reporting is routine. My response here at this podium ends up being routine. The conversation in the aftermath of it. We've become numb to this. We talked about this after Columbine, and Blacksburg, after Tucson, after Newtown, after Aurora, after Charleston.

"It cannot be this easy for somebody who wants to inflict harm on other people to get his or her hands on a gun. And what's become routine, of course, is the response of those who oppose any kind of common sense gun legislation."

With the US being an oft Christian-led country, a little research quickly reveals what Christ is reported to have said - and done. For a start, Christ did not bear arms... And US Christians supporting using guns can't expect support from other Christians - typical 'Word of God' guidance is written everywhere:

Jesus taught us to correct one another because he understood the danger of unrepentant sin. In Matthew 18:15-18 he carefully lays out a process of correcting a brother whose sinned against another brother. Jesus doesn’t reveal the nature of the sin. However, he makes it quite clear that if the sinner doesn’t repent of that sin, he shouldn’t be treated as a brother or sister in Christ. But how will this sinner come to realize his fault? He needs a word of correction. Jesus tells us to confront the sinner individually (v. 15). If the sinner’s heart remains hard, a few others should offer the corrective word (v. 16). And if that doesn’t work, Jesus indicates that the entire church must get involved (v. 18).
Full transcript of President Barack Obama's speech:

President Barack Obama called on the American people to make "common sense gun safety laws" a priority and urged lawmakers on every level to take action following the latest mass shooting -- this one at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg on Thursday October 1.
There's been another mass shooting in America. This time in a community college in Oregon.
That means there are more American families, moms, dads, children, whose lives have been changed forever. That means there's another community stunned with grief, and communities across the country forced to relieve their own anguish and parents across the country who are scared because they know it might have been their families, or their children.
I've been to Roseburg, Oregon. There are really good people there.
I want to thank all the first responders whose bravery likely saved some lives today.
Federal law enforcement has been on the scene in a supporting role, and we've offered to stay and help as much as Roseburg needs for as long as they need.
In the coming days we'll learn about the victims. Young men and women who were studying and learning and working hard with their eyes set on the future, their dreams on what they could make of their lives. And America will wrap everyone who is grieving with our prayers and our love.
But as I said just a few months ago, and I said a few months before that, and I said each time we see one of these mass shootings, our thoughts and prayers are not enough. It's not enough.
It does not capture the heartache and grief and anger that we should feel, and it does nothing to prevent this carnage from being inflicted someplace else in America. Next week, or a couple of months from now.
We don't yet know why this individual did what he did. And it's fair to say that anybody who does this has a sickness in their minds. Regardless of what they think their motivations may be. But we are not the only country on earth that has people with mental illnesses who want to do harm to other people.
We are the only advanced country on earth that sees these kinds of mass shootings every few months.
You know earlier this year, I answered a question in an interview by saying, "The United States of America is the only advanced nation on earth in which we do not have sufficient common sense gun safety laws even in the face of repeated mass killings." And later that day, there was a mass shooting in Lafayette, Louisiana.
That day.
Somehow this has become routine. The reporting is routine. My response here at this podium ends up being routine. The conversation in the aftermath of it. We've become numb to this. We talked about this after Columbine, and Blacksburg, after Tucson, after Newtown, after Aurora, after Charleston.
It cannot be this easy for somebody who wants to inflict harm on other people to get his or her hands on a gun.
And what's become routine, of course, is the response of those who oppose any kind of common sense gun legislation.
Right now, I can imagine the press release is being cranked out. "We need more guns," they'll argue. "Fewer gun safety laws."
Does anybody really believe that? There are scores of responsible gun owners in this country, they know that's not true.
We know because of the polling that says the majority of Americans understand we should be changing these laws, including the majority of responsible, law abiding gun owners.
There is a gun for roughly every man woman and child in America. So how can you with a straight face make the argument that more guns will make us safer?
We know that states with the most gun laws tend to have the fewest gun deaths.
So the notion that gun laws don't work, or just will make it harder for law-abiding citizens and criminals will still get their guns, is not borne out by the evidence.
We know that other countries, in response to one mass shooting, have been able to craft laws that almost eliminate mass shootings. Friends of ours, allies of ours. Great Britain. Australia. Countries like ours.
So we know there are ways to prevent it. And of course what's also routine is that somebody somewhere will comment and say, "Obama politicized this issue." Well, this is something we should politicize. It is relevant to our common life together. To the body politic.
I would ask news organizations, because I won't put these facts forward — have news organizations tally up the number of Americans who've been killed through terrorist attacks in the last decade, and the number of Americans who've been killed by gun violence, and post those side by side on your news reports.
This won't be information coming from me, it will be coming from you.
We spent over a $1 trillion and passed countless laws and devote entire agencies to preventing terrorist attacks on our soil, and rightfully so. And yet, we have a Congress that explicitly blocks us from even collecting data on how we could potentially reduce gun deaths. How can that be?
This is a political choice that we make, to allow this to happen every few months in America. We, collectively, are answerable to those families who lose their loved ones because of our inaction.
When Americans are killed in mine disasters, we worked to make mines safer. When Americans are killed in floods and hurricanes we make communities safer. When roads are unsafe, we fix them, to reduce auto fatalities. We have seat belt laws because we know it saves lives
So the notion that gun violence is somehow difference, that our freedom and our constitution prohibits any modest regulation of how we use a deadly weapon, when there are law abiding gun owners all across the country who could hunt and protect their families and everything do everything that they do under such regulations, doesn't make sense.
So tonight as those of us who are lucky enough to hug our kids a little closer are thinking about the families who aren't so fortunate, I'd ask the American people to think about how they can get our government to change these laws, and to save lives, and to let young people grow up. And that will require a change of politics on this issue.
And it will require that the American people, individually, whether you are a Democrat, or a Republican, and an Independent, when you decide to vote for somebody, are making a determination as to whether this cause of continuing death for innocent people should be a relevant factor in your decision.
If you think this is a problem then you should expect your elected officials to reflect your views. And I would particularly ask America's gun owners who are using those guns -- properly, safely, to hunt, for sport, for protecting their families — to think about whether your views are being properly represented by the organization that suggests its speaking for you.
And each time this happens I'm going to bring this up. Each time this happens I'm going to say we can actually do something about it, but we're going to have to change our laws. And this is not something I can do by myself. I've got to have a Congress, and I've got to have state legislatures, and governors, who are willing to work with me on this.
I hope and pray that I don't have to come out, again, during my tenure as president to offer my condolences to families in these circumstances. But based on my experience as president, I can't guarantee that, and that is terrible to say.
And it can change.
May God bless the memories of those who were killed today. May he bring comfort to their families, and courage to the injured as they fight their way back, and may he give us the strength to come together and find the courage to change. Thank you.



Friday, August 21, 2015

England + Wales trend: Less violence than rest of the world

TO BE AWARE crime in England and Wales shows a trend of non-violence should be considered encouraging for anti-knife crime work.

With all crime at the lowest levels for about 30 years, the non-violence trend brings real hope that campaigners can make much progress to further reduce crimes carried out with sharp instruments - where knife crime figures are circa 26,000+ per year at present.

The trend I highlight is connected to robberies. Robberies account for about 1% of recorded crime while burglaries register 24%. In the USA, while burglaries still outnumber robberies, the proportion of robberies in the crime total is 4x higher.

And how does the tally look for murders on this island of ours, the most serious of crimes? In fact, there is less chance of being murdered in England than most other industrialised societies, according to official figures. (I've flagged this in previous posts, some of you may recall.)

The English murder rate is below that for Japan, less than half that for Germany or France, an eighth of the rate for Scotland or Italy and 26x lower than the United States.

It seems this island of ours has more respect for one another than the citizens of many other countries spread across this fragile planet of ours.

I came across this analysis in Jeremy Paxman's book, The English.  His figure for numbers of robberies is perhaps misleading where the 'Violence against the person' figure (from the Office for National Statistics - ONS - website) is far higher - but the fact there is an obvious trend against violence in this country versus other nations is, as I said, hopeful.

Also notable is the type of Englishman (it's almost always a male!) Paxman highlights as prone to violence... someone like a football hooligan.

Paxman describes one incident where the Swiss had held England to a 1-1 draw in a European Championship match. The Swiss fans were good natured and relatively quiet and unthreatening.

However, at one point outside Wembley, a young shaven headed Englishman eyeballed the Swiss on the other side of the street, ran across the road, shoved his face six inches from one of the young Swiss men in the crowd and screamed 'Wanker' at him.

The Swiss look baffled. The Englishman gesticulated, moving his hand up and down. 'You wanker!' he screamed again, drew back his fist, punched the man in the face and walked through the crowd. 

His walk was casual, cocky, slow enough to invite someone to retaliate for their friend's injury - he was now doubled up, with blood pouring from his nose. But none came, and the thug swaggered off down the pavement, doubtless eager to tell his friends he'd 'done' one of the visiting fans.

Apparently, this is how part of the English population has always been. Fighting (and drunkenness) is considered to be a birthright, maybe. I certainly remember a few from my school days - and those older thugs from the odd Pompey match I had seen (of 657 Crew infamy) and plenty of documentaries on football hooliganism (e.g. Millwall and Chelsea types immediately come to mind).

I can't help thinking that this football fighter caricature applies to those idiots who use weapons. It is a way for these louts / yobs to proclaim their identity; these are the targets to reach. 

As time goes by, I can see that this anti-violence campaign work is not unlike an analogy with the Egyptians of old... an influential nationwide campaign and movement is being built, stone by stone, that deserves to see a remarkable monument (Pyramid) completed to mark a more peaceful nation and world... one day. I would like to predict this is achieved sooner rather than later.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Education programme on dangers of weapon-related crime

THERESA CAVE, mum of fatally stabbed teenager Chris Cave, is inviting schools and other youth organisations to sign up for a hard-hitting programme to try to prevent weapon-related crime.

POINT7 is designed to give young people a broader understanding of the often terrible and hurtful effects on the lives of family, friends and knife / gun crime victims.

The following video highlights the devastation and pain caused by knife and gun crime, and shows excerpts from the POINT7 initiative:



POINT7 is a Tilly award nominee and features on page 12 of ‘Tackling knife crime together - a review of local anti-knife crime projects’ a report orchestrated by Brooke Kinsella in 2011 stating the programme should be prevalent in all schools (Brooke is the sister of another young man, Ben Kinsella from London, killed in a knife attack).

More details about POINT7 programme, which is presented free, can be found on The Chris Cave Foundation website.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Why won't knife crime stats go down? Who STILL wants to stab people?

LIKE many of us presumably, I find it difficult to understand knife crime figures are rising when overall crime is down. Who is out there in Britain still deciding to carry a knife... despite years of anti-knife campaigning work across our nation? Why do they choose to carry arms, carry weapons... WHY?

Some 250 people are now stabbed every week in Britain, according to official figures just released. Numbers of police on our streets have been reduced by 1 in 7 in recent years so a knife crime rise could be connected to that.

Or maybe it's a propaganda-type trick. Authorities report the numbers are up so there's an argument for there to be a 'legitmate' clampdown and targeting by police 'hit squads' on knife carriers.

Crime across the country has dropped except for knife crime, apparently. Is there a balance being struck between the cost of policing, winning hearts and minds with community work and communications, bringing down crime levels - and not having them go up again?

BBC News: July 2015: Latest crime stats released for 2014/15

It is one of those remarkable coincidences, as noted by my previous analysis work over the years reported in this blog, that another general election is over and something odd is notable again in the crime figures. I wonder what figures issued by public authorities can be trusted.

But putting that bigger issue to one side (and that's difficult to do, quite frankly), the moral argument to go after knife carriers on UK streets is unimpeachable.

With knife-related crime stats showing a stubborn trend to not go down from, say, 25,000-ish, tough action to combat this evil, cowardly activity in our green and pleasant land - and pot-holed, dirty and badly-kept urban streets - must be pursued.

Better to remove knives from the carriers than suffer the human cost of dead and injured victims, surely? Ditto guns, other weapons, terrorism etc.

Tragically, many of us will have seen the news this week evidencing the clearest example of the knife crime problem... cyclist Don Lock - a fit, active and much-loved 79-year-old grandfather - was killed by a 'mindless' knife carrier in a reported road rage incident near Worthing in West Sussex. Apparently, the killer was a man aged 34 (police are shown arresting the male suspect below, from the Daily Mirror). How to get knives out of the hands of such men and women? How??

Road rage stabbing incident in Findon, West Sussex
See full story on Mirror website

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

New anti-knife website launched to stem rise in UK stabbings

WORKING to reverse a new rise in knife crime announced this week, a campaigning British mum is stepping up her hard-hitting national campaign against violence in the UK.

Set up in memory of her much-loved teenage son Chris Cave, Theresa Cave has launched a new website built by leading international digital marketing consultancy White Hat Media. 

Brighton-based White Hat Media has designed, developed and built the fresh new online platform for The Chris Cave Foundation (http://www.thechriscavefoundation.org), with funding from the National Lottery.

Chris was stabbed to death by a violent gang leader when he was 17 years old. Since then, his mum Theresa has not rested to communicate a relentless and uncompromising anti-violence message to the world.

The mobile-friendly website is another step to better reach more people across the world to try to stop violence and killings. The new site now hosts a range of modern online features and information, including:
  • Weapons-related education via the POINT7 anti-knife crime project
  • Memorial zone for the families and friends of victims
  • Discussion forum for people affected by knife and other violent crimes
  • Donations section to contribute to the Foundation's campaigning work
Chris Cave knife crime victime
Chris Cave (17), knife victim
Sporting a contemporary look, the site is planned to act as a key information hub on news and facts relating to knife and other violent crime across Britain while also providing a place for those who have been directly affected to come together and discuss experiences.

The Foundation, an evolution of the Mothers for Justice group, was founded by Theresa Cave, after her son's killing on June 5, 2003, in Redcar, a coastal town in the north east of England. 

Chris's foundation is primarily a legacy to young people, aiming to educate and inform with the main aim to eliminate violent crimes.

Theresa's awareness and education work, via face-to-face training and also online using social media and her son’s website, continues to gather support across the UK as well as her home region in the north east of England.

Announcing the new site's launch, Theresa said: "It is important to maintain a high level of knife and violent crime awareness in the country and to provide education, especially for young people, to try to stop the stabbings and other attacks that happen too often.

"I lost my son to knife crime and I won't stop working to get out the message that violence isn't the answer. People must stop and think – and simply not use their fists, knives or any other weapons.

“To hear knife crime is rising means it is more important than ever to focus on hard-hitting messages and education to try to change hearts and minds of those who decide to use violence and carry weapons that can kill.”

She continued: "The new website set up in Chris's memory is a very effective way to communicate about this work and I'm very grateful to White Hat Media for their excellent work putting it together and for the financial support from the National Lottery."

Theresa approached Mark Chapman, Client Strategy and Services Director at White Hat Media, to build the website after they had met online many years ago, sharing tragic experiences as well as a similar desire and drive to stop knife crime and other violence.

Mark set up his own UK knife crime blog (just type in 'knife crime blog' on Google to find it) after he and his family were caught up in a stabbing during a Saturday lunchtime party at a McDonald’s restaurant in Chichester, West Sussex, in 2005. He went to try to save a supervisor who, tragically, had been fatally injured.

Mark said: "Theresa has made huge progress to drive home a powerful, educative message designed to persuade those prone to violence, especially young people, to become more peaceful. By building a new website in Chris's memory, White Hat wanted to show their support for his mum's tireless campaigning."

Kevin Elliott, Operations Director at White Hat Media – whose design and technical team developed the website using the content management system Drupal – said: "We are delighted that Theresa and her family now have a fully-optimised online platform to publicise this important issue. Using the content management system Drupal, we have been able to create an intelligent mobile responsive site that is also social media-friendly."

Further information, interviews, quotes, online marketing and website case studies are available on request. Contact: Gemma Nash, Content & Social Media Executive, telephone: 08455 440223 Email: gemma.nash@whitehatmedia.com

Monday, May 04, 2015

Can you hear a mother crying...?

DO you hear a mother crying?  There's only one bullet / knife between us...



Billy Franks asking, like mothers, fathers, families across the world hurt by gun and knife crime, what kind of world do we want to live in...


Saturday, April 25, 2015

How to kill... stabbed to death for £1500 'murder contract'

It was shocking and upsetting for me to learn of the circumstances around the killing of Penny Davis from the New Forest, who I knew quite well at school years ago. She was stabbed 14 times in a field where she spent time with her horses.

I remember Penny as an independent maybe somewhat opinionated young woman (aren't many of us that too?) - and I can imagine after reading the court coverage that, up to her murder, she was dealing with the sometimes painful tribulations of a troubled family life.

None of that is justification for taking a caring mum's life. Reading details of the trial, it was a callous, remorseless, unconscionable act. What on earth can make a step son take a measured, deliberate decision to have someone kill a mother in her late 40s?

I've posted a copy of the photos of the killers here - this is what knife murderers look like. How do they feel now, locked away for most of the rest of their lives (we hope), I wonder?

Sentenced to 30 years for conspiracy to murder, Benjamin Carr (right) - and Justin Robertson (left) sentenced to 32 years for murder
You can read the BBC trial report about Penny's killing and also details of the impact on the family in local paper coverage.

These evil pair are removed from society for a long time but the damnable stabbing they committed is now forever etched in history, greatly scarring and distressing a family and friends left behind. Who wants to be remembered for causing such suffering? You must be mad.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Knife crime statistics up to Sept 2014 (official release Jan 2015)

KNIFE crime data is back in the news this week; annual figures up to September 2014 have been reported into the public domain. I've made a little time to update my look at the latest statistics release.

First, some initial interpretation of the recorded knife crime stats...

As per my previous assessments, the trend of selected offences committed with knives and other sharp instruments continues to drop, but only slightly; the figures Sept 2013 to Sept 2014 are down 2% on the previous year to 25,721 (knife crime in 2010 was reported as 32,890).

Statistically, is that assessment accurate? Well, there looks to have been a decent downward trend since 2010. A trend of this nature should be a good sign, although it's natural to query the coincidence of the data being downward since the general election in 2010; politicians are wanting to keep their quite comfortable jobs in this year's election and will be keen to demonstrate they've brought down crime figures.

So, to repeat, with an election looming, the topline of this knife crime report implies there has been a downward trend - but look more closely and we see police-recorded crime has not fallen. No change is reported for police recorded crime, with rape and sexual offences at highest levels since the early 2000s (maybe political and organisational reasons for the police trend here).

So, now I'm going to briefly consider how that data is reported this time compared to one of my previous assessments...

To show you how our public officials have a highly dubious record tackling crime and have had a poor grasp of crime figures in the past, let me shine a chink of a spotlight on what they seem to have been doing in the past couple of years with the crime figures:

Knife crime statistics April 2011 to March 2013
Why publish a couple of years data here in 2013- where's the meaningful, accurate data? Were officials being 'economical' with the figures prior to this point? Poor or changing systems of statistical management by civil servants and politicians in the past is my educated reflection.


Knife crime statistics April 2010 to Sept 2014 (GE = General Election in 2010)

Now (above), the latest crime report shows data stretching back to 2010 - but no earlier than that published here. It begs the question... why was there so much reticence to show a clear picture of past crime data? Poor counting of crime date and too many 'leaders' with their reputations, jobs and/or salaries at risk, I suggest. I make that allegation because people have been regularly dying from stabbings and other murders and killings - and still are - as a result of 'Whitehall fiddling with figures', an apparent mis-management and lack of accurate crime information which should have always been available to the public.

It is saddening how crime figures have been poorly tracked in the past - and it has undoubtedly been a tragic lapse... fatally so. My point continues to be that without decent statistical data measuring the crime problems, it is very difficult, if not impossible, to manage solutions to crime. Without reasonable data, it is also easy for all manner of careerist politicians, civil servants and police forces to avoid responsibility for their poor activity to prevent crime, especially saving people's lives. Blood on their hands, it seems.

Does this sound unlikely? All those people paid vast amounts more salary than the majority wouldn't have made such mistakes over so many years would they? I'm not going to go into this further at this point other than state just two examples - Hillsborough and MPs expenses scandal. Huge failures there, mirrored often throughout our public service systems, it seems.

NB: I'm doing this assessment late on a Saturday evening on my own, so no-one else is working with me to check my conclusions; this is because I do this in my free time, voluntarily, in support of knife crime victims, their friends and families, and also other victims and circles adversely affected by all forms of violence. You may notice I am highly sceptical of actions of public servants paid by taxpayers to solve these problems. I believe this approach is necessary, borne out by the too frequent poor running of government.

I'm always open to offers of assistance running this blog because my spare time is not huge. Tonight isn't too bad - I'm just finishing this listening to MTV and Mark Ronson's Uptown Funk to keep me going. Onwards...

Knife crime data source for this article:

Statistical bulletin: Crime in England and Wales, Year Ending September 2014 - Crime Offences involving knives and sharp instruments (released January 2015)


How weapons sellers try to cash-in on the UK's knife crime blog

BELOW is a screenshot of someone's conscience-less attempt to promote weapons sales via this blog. I've had quite a few of these comments fairly regularly.

The red text 'Small Game Hunting Weapons' is a link to Paul Mitchell's (not a real person or name by the looks of it) airguns portal page that promotes hotels. The Paul Mitchell link is a Google account that goes to a strange spam-type Google+ page marketing loads of questionable products.

In my work as a digital consultant, at first glance this looks like an attempt to manipulate search engines via link farming-type activity; companies probably pay 'Paul Mitchell' - or whatever link building network he represents - to build artificial links for products (like weapons) to try to trick search engines, especially Google, to promote his dodgy online businesses.

Trying to make money from the victims, and campaigners against, knife crime

I may delete this attempt to cash in on knife and gun crime in due course - but aim to report it to Google first; will think on it. Reminds me of the fanatical and perverse American guns and weapons lobby and how they try to justify violence and killing. I'm highlighting this here to show the type of immoral nutters you get trying to make money via online methods from other people's misery - sickening. With some action by me and a little luck, 'Paul D Mitchell's' business will get worse.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

"Je Suis Charlie" - People against guns and knives...

IN THE AFTERMATH of the #ParisAttacks and #jesuischarlie solidarity march in the French capital, I thought it important to add a post to this peace-loving blog in a gesture of support. As a qualified and experienced journalist, 'the pen(cil) is mightier than the sword' has been a frequent motto to live by for me.

One of the most haunting of the murders this week was that of a wounded policeman - married with a family - struck prone on the pavement near the Charlie Hebdo office.

In a statement of helplessness, as Ahmed Merabet (42) lay on the ground powerless, the gunmen asked: "Do you want to kill us?". Replying "No, no chief", his killers showed no mercy, ignored his plea for life and in an act of cold blooded murder blasted him to death at point blank range. No words can convey the scale of such evil action. (Learn more about Ahmed here.)

This week the UK experienced the worst kind of violence and injustice on our doorstep not witnessed for many years; such despicable crime and inhumanity was a stone's throw away from my neighbourhood on the south of England. It could be us next; British security chiefs stated that was the case.

It feels like there is little we can do to stop this tide of idiocy from some strange kind of vipers nests, nursed in middle eastern traditions and cultures. People may see these acts as proof a God does not exist else why could such terrible events happen? Yet it is not about the existence of God but some men's choice to ignore human conscience and act as barbarians.

The Mad Jihadists are like the KKK...
KU KLUX KLAN don’t represent Christians; fundamentalist extremist murderous militants don’t represent Islam

For decent westerners and others, we must be sensible and, for our own safety, consider not offending mad men with weapons; careful, considered actions and education are more likely to prevent slaughter than ridiculing and lampooning fundamentalist extremist militants without, it seems, a moral framework.

Most of all, I recommend we become most vigilant to potential dangers around us that might be signs of an imminent attack by such terrorists, Al Qaeda, or whoever they say they are. As decent people, we can use faith for strength, hope and work for change in these mad men - and focusing on these enemies, praying their hearts can be changed. If they don't change, there is no alternative for them but to be removed from societies by all means we can muster for the self defence of decent people.



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