London Riots

Map of UK and London riots: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-14436499

A 29 year man, Mark Duggan, was shot in the face by police in Tottenham, north London last Thursday (4 August). To protest against police brutality and racism a group of family and friends gathered the next day in front of Tottenham police station. After waiting for hours of no avail the gathered exploded into a violent protest attacking a police car. A lot of questions are opened about what exactly followed and how the worst riots in British modern history exploded. In London the riot spread from Tottenham to Lewisham, Peckham, Clapham, Hackney, Ealing and others. This has spread across the country to Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds and Nottingham. The details of the incident and what followed are beginning to emerge: http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2011/aug/09/mark-duggan-police-ipcc

But amid the burning fires, looted shops, violence and fear it is important to stand back and reflect on the deep social divisions that have began to cut through British society. Asking questions about the “why”, “how”, wherefrom” is important not only to understand the dynamics of the riots and how to deal with them, it is important to address the causes. As the UK government austerity measures and unprecedented cuts to public and social services have began to affect the most disenfranchised members of British society, the growing inequality has exploded violently on prime time television. Poverty, unemployment, lack of vision and prospects combined with the removal of safety nets are among the systemic factors that underlie the social divisions, growing inequality and growing instability of the world system.

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