The Real World

May, 1998

In today’s society acts of violence occur with increasing frequency. The degree of brutality with which many of these mindless deeds are executed is frightening. Little or no consideration is given to the ‘victim’, your very existence is at risk. More often than not the motive for these malicious attacks are, to say the least, frivolous. You can fall into a victim category for pathetic reasons such as, where you come from, the team you support (as are both cases with regards to football hooliganism), the way you look, the way you dress, or even the colour of your clothes, let alone the colour of your skin. All these trivial reasons and more have been the incentive for some ‘moron’ (for want of a better, and printable, description) to deliver an innocent person with a merciless beating. Sound familiar. If it does, then you can fully understand what I’m talking about. If you don’t, then welcome to the ‘real world’.

A number of people still do not appreciate just how sadistic a portion of modern-day society really is. Yet it is, and what’s more, the way things are going, it won’t be too long before that element of the population is no longer a minority. Nearly every time you switch the television on, news broadcasts, both national and local, are filled with reports of murder and mayhem. But what’s new. Many don’t even get headline status, such is the normality of such occurrences. It’s amazing that people have developed an acceptance of such violence, even to the point were it’s considered an everyday thing when someone is brutally beaten or murdered.

When people do recognise the degree of violence that has been exerted upon another human being, they act as though they are disgusted and shocked by it’s ‘ugliness’. Having said that, those same people often develop a ‘it will never happen to me’ attitude, convincing themselves that they are not foolish enough to be ‘caught out’. This is a most dangerous and foolish demeanour, one that could quite easily be responsible for a person falling foul of their own mis-guided confidence. Because of their disregard of the possibility that anything could happen to them, they become oblivious to the danger signs which accompany their unforeseen doom. It’s almost as though, through ignorance and an over-confident attitude, that they do not feel threatened, convinced that it will always be someone else, never them who is left for dead over the contents of their pockets.

I’m not trying to create paranoiac tendencies with my views, merely to promote thought and trigger conscious behaviour. Many people cannot understand or relate to the ever present dangers that stalk our streets day and night. It’s not until something happens to them, or someone close to them, that they see the error of their ways. By then it may be too late. You can tell a person the cold facts until you’re blue in the face, but until something ‘wakes them up’, they will never really listen and comprehend. Only the wise few can see the full picture, by being aware of the dangers and understanding pre-attack rituals.

What contributes to the current ‘aggressive climate’? Are there any justifiable reasons? What factors must be considered with regard to why people feel compelled to behave with such callous and malicious intentions? Who really knows what makes people tick? Of course, a person’s background, emotional state, level of stability, social acceptance and peer pressure are all contributory factors with regards to individual behavioural traits (some of which have been covered in my previous articles). One topic which should not be overlooked is the attitude of the law, and that of those responsible for introducing and enforcing those laws.

With the exception of very few, many Judges and Politicians have never been directly touched by the hand of violence, nor is it likely that they ever will be. Their lifestyle will never expose them to the same elements that the everyday normal person has to face. Their social circles do not rub shoulders with your everyday ‘scumbags’. I am aware that there are exceptions to this rule, but generally speaking this is not common place. When you consider that it is the responsibility of these people to set the laws of the land, it is easy, taking into account their lifestyle, why the legal system does not fully appreciate reality. It isn’t just a case of the legal consequences being somewhat lax by providing little or no deterrent for the offending parties. With respect to a person defending themselves in a violent situation, the law still seems to expect that you ‘turn the other cheek’. Now, you don’t need to be a genius to realise that in today’s society that that course of action may, quite literally, be the death of you.