The Metropolis

Five ways you shouldn't respond to the looting

Mike Pollitt | Tuesday 9 August, 2011 10:34

1. Make it about you

Don’t know about rioting but the queue length at Kilburn Sainsbo is criminal.less than a minute ago via TwimGo 2 Favorite Retweet Reply

It’s not about you.

2. Make bad jokes

Just been down to Mare Street, Hackney. It’s had an absolute mare.less than a minute ago via web Favorite Retweet Reply

Black humour is absolutely an appropriate response. But try to keep it witty, original, and sophisticated. Moments of crisis do not excuse sloppy wordplay.

3. Get in the way
“There are far too many spectators who are getting in the way of the police operations to tackle criminal thuggery and burglary. I’m imploring that people start clearing the streets to enable officers to deal with the criminality that is occurring in front of them.”

That’s Tim Godwin, acting Commissioner of the Met. If there’s trouble tonight, put your camera phone away, go home and watch it on the news.

4. Score political points
“Boris Johnson’s policies of undermining community policing are particularly dangerous to Londoners under the conditions of the unnecessarily deep recession being imposed by the Tory-led government.”

Ken Livingstone. There’s a big debate to be had about cuts, society, benefits, youth programs, alienation, poverty, opportunity, elitism, and the cost of a bus fare. But when Londoners are holed up scared in their homes, and shopkeepers are protecting their properties with sticks, I’m pretty sure it’s not the time to have that debate. It can wait.

5. Be credulous in the face of rumour

Breaking into London zoo & letting poor, innocent but dangerous animals loose is sickening. One thing though: I hope they maul the rioters.less than a minute ago via web Favorite Retweet Reply

Just silly.

Things you can do: check on a neighbour, check on your local corner shop, clean up some mess, take back your street with an organised cupcake party, and so on.

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