YESTERDAY the Prime Minister, Tony Blair, joined in the hysterical attack that the state and bosses are launching on Britain’s youth.
Millions of young people are being victimised by capitalism. They are either exploited on New Deal slave labour schemes, or face massive debt if they seek to gain higher university education.
As a result they hate capitalism. Millions of youth who were eligible to vote at the 2005 general election refused to do so on the basis that whatever party got in, they would still be treated like muck, the system would remain exactly the same, and that all bourgeois politicians were liars.
Faced with a deepening world capitalist crisis, the ruling class fears that the millions of already disaffected youth will become the organising revolutionary force for mobilising the working class to fight and overthrow the capitalist order.
This is why the Blair government is seeking to treat the youth as the number one ‘enemy of the people’ – to be curfewed, banned, disciplined, tagged and subjected to anti-social behaviour orders (ASBOs).
The latest stricture is that youth are to be forced to stop wearing ‘intimidating clothes’, hooded jackets and baseball caps, since these constitute a ‘uniform’ that can be intimidating, according to Prescott, the Deputy Prime Minister.
At his press conference, Blair applauded Prescott’s support for the Bluewater shopping centre in Kent, which has banned youths wearing jackets with hoods and baseball caps.
Prescott said hoods were part of an ‘intimidating’ uniform and added he had nearly fallen foul of ‘happy slapping’, where attacks on passers-by are filmed.
In fact, our ever so moral Deputy Prime Minister has already starred in a ‘happy slapping’ movie himself, when he was filmed punching a protester who threw an egg at him during the 2002 election.
Needless to say he was not subjected to an anti-social behaviour order and his family was not penalised for the way that he had been brought up.
Millions wear hooded jackets and baseball caps. Are all these now to be cautioned or tagged by a Labour government that has become terrified of the working class.
Contrast this hysterical treatment with the way that the law courts are treating capitalist state gunmen, part of the same state apparatus that is harassing youth.
Yesterday an appeal court found that the two police officers who opened fire on Harry Stanley and killed him, for carrying a table leg in a plastic bag that they said they thought was a firearm, were not guilty of ‘unlawful killing’, and a coroner’s verdict was overturned.
The same judge refused to allow the Stanley family leave to appeal against this verdict and from seeking a new inquest, while the two police officers have had their suspensions lifted and have returned to work.
For good measure, Metropolitan Police chief Blair’s spokesman said yesterday that, from now on, suspensions would only be used when the Commissioner has ‘grounds to believe that the behaviour of an officer meant they would have to leave the force’.
The capitalist state, that is being pitted against the youth and the working class, is being told that it is to be immune from prosecution, that the law does not apply to it, so it can get on with the job without any fears of prosecution.
There can be only one answer to this provocation – the organisation of a socialist revolution to smash the capitalist state and to go forward to socialism.