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June 6, 2008

Knife Violence In London

A young girl was murdered in an elevator in an apartment building. She was 15 years old and is one of several young Londoners who has died recently in a surge of knife violence. Even though London has a low number of murders on average there has been an increase in young knife violence.

There is speculation that this knife violence is related to a new gang culture that is emerging in the city. Young people are murdering one another over things like someone looking at someone else or harsh words. While youth violence and gang culture is prevalent around the world, London has not typically been a hot spot for such incidents.

Murdering someone over something as silly as the way that they looked at you or your girlfriend or boyfriend is just plain stupid. To take a life based on such trivial things is become more common. Perhaps the electronic age that many young people live in has thwarted their ability to recognize the worth of life.

Teens communicate through social networking websites and fall in love over text messages and instant messages. There is a connection lost somewhere between the electronic word that appear on a screen. People seem to be becoming much more disconnected with the preciousness of life. The importance of having a person alive and well standing before you speaking real words. The power of humanity could be lost to this new electronic way of life.

The new mayor of London vows to curb the knife violence that the city is grappling with. He has already stopped public drinking on the subways and won the election in part because of his ideas about how to stop some of the violence in the city. Hopefully he will be able to stop the murder of London’s young people.

A young actor who had a role in the upcoming Harry Potter movie was stabbed at a night club a few weeks ago. He was stabbed by another young man. Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced an end to the system of warnings tat were being given to any teenager caught carrying a knife. Now if you are 16 or over and have a knife that has a blade longer than 3 inches you could face up to four years in prison.

These new measures are frowned upon by some who say that teens who carry knives do so because they have been victims of crime. However, it is clear that the recent young murderers who were carrying knives were not doing so because they intended to use them against someone else, not defend themselves. I think that owning a knife that you carry around for protection is just like owning a gun you have for protection. You have access to a weapon so there is more of a chance you will use it in circumstances that you might have walked away from. Let’s face it, we all get to those points in life where we are shaking with anger and if we had a weapon we might use it in the heat of the moment. Carrying a knife is bad news for everyone involved.

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