THE DIARY OF A GEEK IN OXFORDSHIRE


Solving the World's problems with common sense and a flamethrower.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

If You Want To Know The Time . . .

A Community Police Officer prepares to make an arrest for Littering.

. . . Don't, for the love of all that's holy, ask a Policeman. You'll only get nicked.

News reaches Vitriol Towers that your friendly neighbourhood StasiPlod have a habit of detaining innocent people, on trumped-up charges, just to get your DNA on their database. It seems Life imitates Art. Sorry.

Lovely. So you're walking down the street, minding your own business, when a burly stormtrooper in a stab vest grabs you and sticks a swab up your first available orifice, all in the name of 'Building Safer Communities'/'Tough on Crime in YOUR Community'/'Working For Safer Communities'/'Insert Pointless Marketing-esque Strapline Here'.

It's hardly Dixon of Dock Green, is it?

The oft-wailed cry of those caught speeding or committing some other egregious offence against 'the community' is, "why don't you go and catch real criminals?". And while I'm not normally one for cliche, that phrase sounds particularly apposite in this case.

This action by the police is not about lowering crime at all, not about catching criminals. It's about laziness.

To catch, say, a serial burglar requires expensive Scenes of Crime examinations, costly detectives and, perhaps, even (whisper it softly) overtime. None of these are acceptable, because they take the focus of the police away from the important goals of filling their 'Report on the Incidence of Reporting of Reported Crime (in YOUR Community)' forms in triplicate. Add in the fact that their all-black uniforms and Toys'R'Us Batman Utility Belts weigh so much they can't go running after felons as it's a Health & Safety risk, and you see the truth.

Collaring anyone within 500 yards of a parking-ticket and sticking a cotton-bud up their bottom means the Stasi don't have to go running after fleet-footed drug dealers, or enduring the rigmarole of following up clues to a real crime. Their arrest statistics look great, the DNA Database bulges with millions of 'suspects' - and we're so disillusioned with the whole thing that when we're stabbed in the face for our mobile phones we don't even bother ringing up for a 'crime number'*. So the 'reported crime' statistics look good too.

And if it turns out, one day in the future, that somebody on the database is wanted for a serious crime - non-payment of Council Tax or something - well, that proves why we must have a Database of Everyone. For the good of the Community, innit.

Oi, Z-Cars. Stop being the paramilitary wing of the Office of National Statistics, and go and catch some real criminals.

*which is another rant.




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5 comments:

camilynn said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Dandelion said...

Um, yeah. Only they don't actually stick it up your bottom. They take a cheek-swab, just like in GCSE biology.

Dungeekin said...

@Dandelion:

sat⋅ire
  /ˈsætaɪər/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [sat-ahyuhr]

–noun
1. the use of irony, sarcasm, ridicule, or the like, in exposing, denouncing, or deriding vice, folly, etc.
2. a literary composition, in verse or prose, in which human folly and vice are held up to scorn, derision, or ridicule.
3. a literary genre comprising such compositions.

banned said...

Get your own back, stare at scruffy PCSOs in a hostile manner, it really upsets them coz they know they are crap.

Anonymous said...

" . . . a burly stormtrooper in a stab vest grabs you and sticks a swab up your first available orifice."

The mouth is an orifice. I suppose it's the "up" rather than "in" that's creating the problem.