So now the
chickens have well and truly come home terrifyingly to roost. The violent
anarchy that has taken hold of British cities is the all-too-predictable
outcome of a three-decade liberal experiment which tore up virtually every
basic social value.
two-parent family, educational meritocracy, punishment of criminals,
national identity, enforcement of the drugs laws and many more fundamental
conventions were all smashed by a liberal intelligentsia hell-bent on a
revolutionary transformation of society.
Those of us
who warned over the years that they were playing with fire were sneered at
and smeared as right-wing nutters who wanted to turn the clock back to some
mythical golden age.
Now we can see
what they have brought about in the unprecedented and horrific scenes of mob
violence, with homes and businesses going up in flames, and epidemic
is some as yet unidentified direction and co-ordination behind the anarchy.
But what is so notable and distressing is that, after the first day when
adults were clearly involved, this mayhem has been carried out in the main
by teenagers and children, some as young as eight.
The idea that
they should not steal other people’s property, or beat up and rob
passers-by, appears to be as weird and outlandish to them as the suggestion
that they should fly to the moon.
feel absolutely entitled to go ‘on the rob’ and steal whatever they want.
Indeed, they are incredulous that anyone should suggest they might pass up
such an opportunity.
What has been
fuelling all this is not poverty, as has so predictably been claimed, but
moral collapse. What we have been experiencing is a complete breakdown of
civilised behaviour among children and young people straight out of William
Golding’s seminal novel about childhood savagery, Lord Of The Flies.
There has been
much bewildered talk about ‘feral’ children, and desperate calls upon their
parents to keep them in at night and to ask them about any stolen goods they
are bringing home.
As if there
were responsible parents in such homes! We are not merely up against feral
children, but feral parents.
these parents know their children are out on the streets. Of course they see
them staggering back with what they have looted. But either they are too
drunk or drugged or otherwise out of it to care, or else they are helping
themselves to the proceeds, too.
Cameron observed yesterday, there are clearly pockets of society that are
not just broken, but sick.
The causes of
this sickness are many and complex. But three things can be said with
certainty: every one of them is the fault of the liberal intelligentsia;
every one of them was instituted or exacerbated by the Labour government;
and at the very heart of these problems lies the breakdown of the family.
For most of
these children come from lone-mother households. And the single most crucial
factor behind all this mayhem is the willed removal of the most important
thing that socialises children and turns them from feral savages into
civilised citizens: a father who is a fully committed member of the family
there are many lone parents who do a tremendous job. But we’re talking here
about widespread social collapse. And there are whole areas of Britain,
white as well as black, where committed fathers are a wholly unknown
In such areas,
successive generations are being brought up only by mothers, through whose
houses pass transitory males by whom these women have yet more children —
and who inevitably repeat the pattern of lone and dysfunctional parenting.
The result is
fatherless boys who are consumed by an existential rage and desperate
emotional need, and who take out the damage done to them by lashing out from
infancy at everyone around them.
inhabit what is effectively a different world from the rest of society. It’s
a world without any boundaries or rules. A world of emotional and physical
A world where
a child responds to the slightest setback or disagreement by resorting to
violence. A world where the parent is unwilling or incapable of providing
the loving and disciplined framework that a child needs in order to thrive.
Yet instead of
lone parenthood being regarded as a tragedy for individuals, and a
catastrophe for society, it has been redefined as a ‘right’.
came to power in 1997, it set about systematically destroying not just the
traditional family but the very idea that married parents were better for
children than any other arrangement.
introduced the sexual free-for-all of ‘lifestyle choice’; claimed that the
idea of the male breadwinner was a sexist anachronism; and told girls that
they could, and should, go it alone as mothers.
This was the
outcome of the shattering defeat of Tony Blair, in the two years or so after
he came to power, at the hands of the ultra-feminists and apostles of non-judgmentalism
in his Cabinet and party who were determined, above all, to destroy the
traditional nuclear family.
virtually alone against them, and lost.
One of these
ultra-feminist wreckers was Harriet Harman. The other night, she was on TV
preposterously suggesting that cuts in educational allowances or youth
workers had something to do with young people torching and looting shops,
robbing and leaving people for dead in the streets.
But Harman was
one of the principal forces in the Labour government behind the promotion of
lone parenthood and the marginalisation of fathers. If anyone should be
blamed for bringing about the conditions which have led to these appalling
scenes in our cities, it is surely Ms Harman.
breaking of the family was further condoned, rewarded and encouraged by the
Welfare State, which conceives of need solely in terms of absence of money,
and which accordingly subsidises lone parenthood and the destructive
behaviour that fatherlessness brings in its train.
dependency further created the entitlement culture that the looters so
egregiously display. It taught them that the world owed them a living. It
taught them that their actions had no consequences. And it taught them that
the world revolved around themselves.
The result of
this toxic combination of welfare and non-judgmentalism was an explosion of
elective lone parenthood and dysfunctional behaviour transmitted down
through the generations at the very bottom of the social heap — creating, in
effect, a class apart.
would have been rescued from their disadvantaged backgrounds by schools
which gave them not just an education but structure and purpose to their
liberal intelligentsia destroyed that escape route, too. For its onslaught
upon marriage — the bedrock institution of society — with a tax system that
penalises married couples with a wife who doesn’t work, was replicated by an
onslaught upon the understanding and very identity of that society. Instead
of transmitting knowledge to children, teaching was deemed to be an attack
upon a child’s autonomy and self-esteem.
Thus it was
that teachers adopted the ‘child-centred’ approach, which expected children
not only to learn for themselves but also to decide for themselves about
behaviour such as sexual morality or drug-taking.
was that children were left illiterate and innumerate and unable to think.
Abandoned to wander through the world without any guidance, they predictably
ended up without any moral compass.
All of this
was compounded still further by the disaster of multiculturalism — the
doctrine which held that no culture could be considered superior to any
other because that was ‘racist’.
children were no longer taught about the nation in which they lived, and
about its culture. So not only were they left in ignorance of their own
society, but any attachment to a shared and over-arching culture was
forging social bonds, multiculturalism dissolved them — and introduced
instead a primitive war of all against all, in which the strongest groups
would destroy the weak.
related to this was ‘victim culture’, in which all minority groups were
regarded as victims of the majority. So any bad behaviour by them was
excused and blamed on the majority.
vein, all criminal wrongdoing was excused on the basis that the criminal
couldn’t help himself, as he was the victim of circumstances such as
poverty, unemployment, or as yet illusory cuts in public spending.
rights of the criminal became seen as more important than the safety and
security of his victims. Punishment became a dirty word. So the entire
criminal justice system turned into a sick joke, with young hoodlums walking
off with community sentences or Asbos (antisocial behaviour orders) which
they held in total contempt.
Mr Cameron has
declared that all those convicted of violent disorder in these riots will go
it more likely that they will end up on some community penalty which will
see them taken on trips to Alton Towers to make up for their disadvantaged
upbringing? This is the normal response of our sentimentalised and
addle-brained criminal justice officials.
In short, what
we have seen unfolding before our horrified gaze over the past four days in
Britain is the true legacy of the Labour years.
The social and
moral breakdown behind the riots was deliberately willed upon Britain by
left-wing politicians and other middle-class ideologues who wrap their utter
contempt for the poor in the mantle of ‘progressive’ non-judgmentalism.
These are the
people who — against the evidence of a mountain of empirical research — hurl
execrations at anyone who suggests that lone parenthood is, in general, a
catastrophe for children (and a disaster for women); who promote drug
liberalisation, oppose selective education (while paying for private tutors
for their own children) and call those who oppose unlimited immigration and
And the real
victims of these people ‘who know best’ are always those at the bottom of
the social heap, who possess neither the money nor the social or
intellectual resources to cushion them against the most catastrophic effects
of such nonsense.
once an ordered society that was the envy of the world — the most civilised,
the most gentle and law-abiding.
Britain be put together again? David Cameron is commendably talking tough:
but will he have the stomach for tough action?
Will he, for
example, remove the incentives to girls and women to have babies outside
marriage? Will he dismantle the concept of entitlement from the Welfare
vigorously enforce the drug laws? Will he end the kid-glove treatment of
‘victim groups’, and hold them to account for their behaviour in exactly the
same way as everyone else?
terrible damage also means, dare I say it, a return to the energetic
transmission of Biblical morality.
from the Archbishop of Canterbury about the riots? Anyone care to guess what
he will eventually say about them? Quite.
leaders stop prattling like soft-headed social workers and start preaching,
once again, the moral concepts that underlie our civilisation, and when our
political leaders decide to oppose the culture war that has been waged
against that civilisation rather than supinely acquiescing in its
destruction, then — and only then — will we start to get to grips with this
within the smouldering embers of our smashed and burned-out cities, we can
only look upon the ruins of the Britain we have so dearly loved: the Britain
that once led the world towards civilisation, but is now so tragically
leading the way out.