Kevin Myers: Feral rioters all have one thing in common -- a lack of father figures
The duty of journalists is to tell the truth. If we don't do that, it's the equivalent of a nurse comfortably chatting over a nice cup of tea while an empty saline drip feeds air into a patient's artery. The moment that we think it's more important to protect some comfortable ideological dogma is the moment when our particular patient, truth, begins to die. I take no pleasure in what follows; but there is a job to be done, so here goes.
Perhaps the most astounding element in the British television coverage of the riots over much of England has been the steadfast refusal to mention the race of most of the rioters. They are clearly, and overwhelmingly, Afro-Caribbean, the descendants of immigrants, though such has been the utter British failure to integrate so much of the immigrant population that many have retained something of a Caribbean accent. Admittedly, not all of the rioters are "black": clearly, some white youths have joined in.
But where they have not got race is common, they probably have another feature that joins them: absent father-figures. An astonishing number of young males in London are the sons of single mothers. They have been raised without the presence of a male authority figure to impose familial order, and furthermore and most vitally, to promote the patriarchy.