#26 G.O.L.D. – Go On, Loot Daily
I’m so fucking fuming about this whole Duggan thing that I can’t be arsed to subject myself to going through it again. Instead, here are some recycled thoughts on the subject, which have held up oddly well given the time that has passed since I first wrote them.
Firstly, from late September 2013, as the inquest started.
Gangster’s Paradigm Shift?
So the Mark Duggan inquest has rolled round. You remember him? No? Well you’re in good company; mainly the hordes of rioters who took his shooting dead by the police in 2011 as a sign to rise up against the country they lived in, and kick in Foot Locker’s windows. (Best image of the whole riot? A whole high street burned and smashed, and in the middle of it all a Waterstone’s, pristine and untouched. Poignant). Essentially the ones who could actually remember his name decided, without access to the evidence or any testimony, that it was another case of police brutality and racism. That might turn out to be true, but let’s be honest why bother with courts and trials when there are a group of people who know the verdicts instantly anyway?
The most interesting bit of this has been the reaction in the black community. Normally in the past these kinds of events have been met with revulsion and universal condemnation. This time however the burgeoning black middle class in this country, who have mortgages, jobs, and have as little in common with the Tottenham Man Dem as some suburban mummy’s boy from Aylesbury, have looked at it and thought ‘fuck him; he took on the cops and came unstuck’.
Duggan is the complete stereotype; broken home, petty crime, rootless, jobless, all the stuff. The realty intriguing thing is that he was twenty nine years old when he died. TWENTY NINE. A grown man running round Tottenham playing at being a bad man. Bit tragic really. To be honest it’s not the fact that he was used by lazy idiots to rob things that they couldn’t be bothered to work and save for. It’s the fact that his death has raised no questions about how there are huge numbers of black people for whom his lifestyle is completely alien, and how they have come from the same neighbourhoods (they’re not ghettos; the Jews were forced into ghettos and made to live that way, this is by choice and poverty of ambition and application) and made something of themselves.
But then that would involve time and effort, and confronting some unpleasant truths about how the world isn’t split by black and white, but by having money and not. Which makes Mark Duggan a wakeup call for everyone that has been ignored. Again.
Then from last month, as it neared a conclusion.
So the Mark Duggan verdict hoves into view. here’s what’s going to happen.
All the people who thought he was an innocent little lamb who was minding his own business when the nasty coppers stopped the minicab he was in and shot him to fuck for no good reason will line up on one side. All the people who laughed at the fact he was a 29 year old gangster who frankly should’ve grown out of it by then and tried to front the Old Bill and came unstuck will line up on the other side.
The verdict will be handed down.
One side will agree with it and express their satisfaction through various media outlets. The other side will disagree and let everyone know. Depending on the verdict this unhappiness will either result in fevered calls to phone in stations about how the police can’t do their job and stop and search should be extended not curtailed and PACE abolished, or threats to burn stuff and rob Foot Locker.
Nothing will actually change.
It’s profoundly depressing of course, but such is the way when vested interests hold sway. One side wants further power to oppress and restrict people; the other needs a minority fearful and looking to them for solutions. As long as it doesn’t get fixed everyone’s golden.
Except the people who are affected of course…..
Whatever you think is fine, I can’t be arsed any more myself….