An article from June 2007. After going back over things I wrote a few months ago, I'm starting to notice some recurring themes...
I love the BBC website. Whenever I’m feeling particularly drained of ideas I just have to make a short trip there and I know I’m going to find an example of cutting edge, hard-hitting journalism which will inspire me to put fingers to keyboard and voice my opinion on the most important of current affairs. Or not, as the case may be with this article which makes the shockingly obvious claim that six out of ten of us Brits are opportunistic criminals.
Yes, it’s time to face facts and realise that when someone receives more change than they’re meant to they’ll keep it anyway. The dastards! Or when given the opportunity to take cash-in-hand for a job so as to avoid paying tax* most people will choose that option. Who would’ve thunk it?! Clearly these groundbreaking researchers are correct in saying that there is no “law-abiding majority” and that the respectable middle-classes are a “seething mass of morally dubious, and outright criminal, behaviour”. Maybe now this problem has been highlighted we can all join hands and combat this problem together.
Alright, enough of the crap sarcasm. I honestly don’t know why they bothered wasting billions of pounds on this survey when they could’ve just paid me a £5 million consulting fee so that I could tell them that people are, in general, opportunistic bastards. The fact that there was even the suggestion that middle class people are more morally upright than lower class people is a view which is frankly insulting, naïve and belongs in the Bronze Age when it might conceivably have been true*
Actually, no. Not even in the Bronze Age could it be said that people wouldn’t commit a ‘criminal’ act if it was advantageous to them. It really gets my goat when tossers make this comment, which I’ve heard more times than, “Fuck off Richard”,
“People talk about not having to lock the door in childhood, and I remember that myself. There is unquestionably more opportunistic crime. I would have to say that behind that lies a decline in belief in God, and a culture of hedonism, self-fulfilment getting on, and materialism.”
Such a statement is horseshit* through and through. The reason no one used to have to lock their door was because they lived in small, isolated communities where everyone knew each other. A criminal would have to be pretty fucking desperate/mentally challenged to nick something from a mate’s house and then try and flog it back to them down the pub. And if little Maddie went missing in a small Gloucester village, everyone would know who the local paedo was and a short lynching later everything would be gravy. Now that we live in an age where people can ship stolen goods on without breaking a sweat, it’s hardly surprising that you have to lock your door*.
Since when did a belief in God lead to better morals? Since when did being an atheist lead to better morals? Catholics rape small children, Muslims blow themselves up in crowded areas and atheists commit acts of genocide. Sure I’m generalising, but so are these pricks who constantly generalise about the world going to the dogs in the face off rapidly improving health care, technology, social equality and falling crime levels. So fuck ‘em.
I always laugh at those piss-poor anti-piracy adverts that ruin the first 30 seconds of whatever film you’re watching. “You wouldn’t steal a purse! You wouldn’t rob a bank! You wouldn’t rape a granny, defecate in her mouth and make off with her savings! Don’t steal our films!” it confidently states. Err… yes I cocking would if any of those crimes were as easy and consequence free as downloading an mp3 or the latest episode of Heroes*. Of course I don’t commit these crimes because I have respect for other people and don’t want to live in constant fear of vigilante OAPs. My moral compass is pretty straight but I won’t not do something that will benefit me and not harm anyone else significantly just because it’s against the law.
“If I thought something was OK, then found out it was against the law, I wouldn't do it. I would think it was wrong.”
It’s that kind of opinion I’m talking about. Laws are an integral part of society but I don’t think there’s a compulsion to obey them blindly. Take cannabis for example. I have no qualms with admitting that I regularly smoke joints, even if it is against the law*. And I don’t say that because I think it makes me cooler than those who don’t*, but because I personally enjoy it, I’m not harming anyone else by doing it and I think to apply the law to me and send me to jail for it would be a waste of everyone’s time and money. Speaking of drugs and petty crime, if you want to get rid of what I’m assuming people refer to as ‘lower-class’ crime then let’s tackle this whole issue of sick addicts turning to crime to fuel their addiction.
Anyhoo… I know I’m not alone in my views. After all, 6/10 people can’t be wrong. Right? We’re all ‘criminals’, we all take advantage of laws that are in place but aren’t a matter of life and death, so what? People are ‘allowed’, according to the law, to dick people over and do things to their advantage all the time. That makes them cocks, and also human. Taking more money than perhaps the government says you’re entitled too, whilst it is technically illegal, isn’t as bad in my sincere opinion as breaking up with your partner by spit-roasting their mum. Which is legal. Thank God.
Once again it all comes down to common sense. Something you and I have an abundance of and everyone else is in desperate need of in order to make this world a sensible place to live in. Don’t worry, they’ll catch up eventually.