Friday, 12 August 2011

Riots and Chaos

The IGP has some words of wisdom for the Malaysian public.

Deputy IGP: London riots proof against allowing street protests

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 11 — The ongoing riots in London and other major cities in Britain are evidence of the “nightmares” that can be prevented by avoiding street protests, said Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Khalid Abu Bakar

Despite chaotic scenes where tens of thousands were dispersed with tear gas and water cannons during the July 9 Bersih rally, Khalid (picture) said that “we are able to avoid these scary and tragic scenes from erupting here in our beloved country.”

“These are the nightmares that we are fighting hard to avoid and prevent. Street protest should always be avoided as we will never know what it can turn into,” he said on his Facebook page last night.

A few things that need to be taken into context here:

1. The British police were instructed to "stand and observe looting". This will never happen in Malaysia, because the cops are too anxious to get their hands on any unsuspecting citizen so they can show who's boss. The British cops on the other hand, display restrain.

2. In order not to provoke more anger, the police did not take any action against the rioters. Unfortunately, there were many out to take advantage of the situation by committing crimes. The police should have promptly arrested those.

3. The issue that the British government has failed to tackle here is the minority underclass. From several videos and images on the web, it is very evident that most of the perpetrators are of minority groups who probably hold a lot of resentment about their status.

Interestingly, there have been a few instances of massive riots in the US. And yet, the US still remains the world super-power. I expect the UK economy would not be unaffected by this either though they would do well to get to the root of this matter of random rioting.

That being said, while streets protests are enshrined in the constitution as a freedom of expression and public gathering, riots are never acceptable.

Expressing oneself is normal, infringing on someone else's property and personal rights is not.

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