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Amelia Gentleman speaks to youngsters for whom a few heady days in August have cast a long shadow

Last week, Danielle Corns was sentenced to 10 months in prison for momentarily stealing two left-footed trainers during riots in Wolverhampton. As she was sentenced, her mum Sharon began shouting at the judge from the public gallery: "You're destroying an innocent girl's life… How can you do that to somebody?" As she screamed, her daughter began to cry, and Sharon was swiftly made to leave the courtroom by security staff.

That evening, as she waited to find out which prison Danielle had been sent to, Sharon said she thought her daughter would not cope well with being in jail. "It's a damaging experience. She'll never be able to erase it from her mind. She shouldn't have to experience that. She's not a criminal. It's very unfair, the way she's been treated. It's just so wrong."

Now that we're deep into November, the heat and chaos of midsummer feels a distant memory, but for the families of young people caught up in the riots, the events of a few anarchic August days have cast long shadows.

For those who have never been in trouble with the police before, and who appear to have had only the most fleeting involvement, the severity of the treatment they have received has come as a shock. Time spent in the courtrooms, where judges are still only beginning to wade through the fallout from these events, reveals how many lives have been ruined in an instant by the simple decision to venture out, to look at what was happening in the streets. Time spent with relatives shows how one person's arrest can have devastating implications for the rest of the family.

Judges and magistrates justify the unusually stiff penalties they are still giving to those found guilty of riots-related offences by citing their right to impose stricter sentences as a deterrent. It was in this climate that two young men who set up a Facebook page encouraging a riot (which they never attended and which never actually took place) were sentenced to four years in prison, and that a young mother of two – who herself slept through the riots – was sentenced to five months for accepting a pair of shorts, looted by a friend (although she was later freed on appeal).

Immediately after the riots, the political signals were very clear. David Cameron said it was important that judges sent out a "tough message". Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge defended some of the most severe decisions, remarking, "Given the overall ghastliness of what was going on in the country, these sentences had to be significantly higher." Judges concluded that the sentences should reflect the mood of public indignation.

For people such as Danielle Corns, this has led to peculiar judgments; it's hard to see what's happening to her as anything other than a pointless waste of her time and taxpayers' money....

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2011/nov/25/england-riots-personal-cost-youngsters-sentenced
what a sham. the rich have been screwing the poor classes for centuries and one harmless teenage girl robs a pair of shoes and gets 10 months in prison. the rich and the politicians are doing everything in their power to protect their system
 

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She didn't steal a pair of shoes. She wasn't that smart.

Just a normal English rose walking down the High Street in August in her ski gloves.
 

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I think it's great she got sentenced to be fair. Just the problem here is why should one girl be sentenced while thousands of others are simply left free?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I think it's great she got sentenced to be fair.
:facepalm: i always thought you were a bit of a clown. i just wasnt sure why

Just the problem here is why should one girl be sentenced while thousands of others are simply left free?
read the whole article. it's not just her case, it's the way the english courts have dealt with all of the people who have been involved or were involved in the riots.
 

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I suppose the judges are still trying to work out how much jail time the banksters should get for effectively costing the country hundreds of billions. They are taking a while :rolleyes:
 

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Well we can't confirm she was harmless, for one thing we don't know her and she had the guts to wade through the melee and craziness and 'jack' two left footed trainers. The stupidity of the crime aside, the punishment doesn't fit the crime, that part is obviously true. Most of the rioters/looters aren't exactly criminals as such, she clearly got herself involved with the crowd mentality.

She deserves a greater punishment than what she would normally get for the crime, but not 10 months. Extended community service would have sufficed, save the 10 months for the far greater crimes. They'll probably end up shortening the sentence.

Everything from the policing of the rioters to the sentencing has been a shambles, but it's the same with everything English authorities aren't used to dealing with.
 

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She should be sentenced and receive punishment for her wrong-doing, although 10 months sounds way too harsh for a pair wrong-footed trainers.

I think the system is giving her a punishment for all the other people that were not caught which I think is wrong. One thing this harsh punishment might accomplish though is that it will deter people from stealing and they'll think twice before looting.
 

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Lurrrkin'
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Could just give her a 10 month course on how to properly steal footwear.
 

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what a sham. the rich have been screwing the poor classes for centuries
It must be somewhat nice to have such a limited conceptual apparatus through which you understand and interpret current events. Makes thinking easier.

One imagines that you would offer the same "analysis" about a story in which a McDonald's patron is shorted her fries, or in which a monkey escapes from the zoo, etc.

Could just give her a 10 month course on how to properly steal footwear.
:lol:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
It must be somewhat nice to have such a limited conceptual apparatus through which you understand and interpret current events. Makes thinking easier.

One imagines that you would offer the same "analysis" about a story in which a McDonald's patron is shorted her fries, or in which a monkey escapes from the zoo, etc.



:lol:
i understand that it must quite annoying for you that i'm able to make good points in concize sentences -aphorisms, if you will- whereas you need at least 5 pages of careful dedication to write down the same old tired BS that many others have expressed with more eloquence and sense than you :wavey:
 

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i understand that it must quite annoying for you that i'm able to make good points in concize sentences -aphorisms, if you will-
:haha:


Please pardon me, Confucius.

In my own humble lack of understanding, I failed to recognize how a somewhat harsh penalty for theft was meaningfully reducible to "the rich screwing the poor."

I will meditate on this further until I achieve your wisdom.
 

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It must be somewhat nice to have such a limited conceptual apparatus through which you understand and interpret current events. Makes thinking easier.

One imagines that you would offer the same "analysis" about a story in which a McDonald's patron is shorted her fries, or in which a monkey escapes from the zoo, etc.

:lol:
+1

The riots were about opportunistic criminality, and I for one am sick of those with a political agenda trying to attribute it to inequality.
 

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A few days ago you were berating me for commenting on a Canadian case where an Afghan man and his son drowned the three girls in the family along with his other wife. (The girls liked nice clothes and talked to boys at school.) You said the press should not report this stuff, for some reason that escapes me other than that you must favour press censorship, so we would all end up reading Granma.

Given that English justice sets the standard for the world, I would think you would favour ignoring this small anomaly in favour of concentrating on the big picture.

Apart from that, if I were to clutter the forum by starting a thread over every little thing I found worthy of criticism in the non-Western world, I would rightly be called a huge mug clown. Why don't you stick to important stuff, like dwarf tossing?
 

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She should be sentenced and receive punishment for her wrong-doing, although 10 months sounds way too harsh for a pair wrong-footed trainers.

I think the system is giving her a punishment for all the other people that were not caught which I think is wrong. One thing this harsh punishment might accomplish though is that it will deter people from stealing and they'll think twice before looting.
I don't know if anything will ever stop riots anywhere :sad: They seem to be popping up in so many places anymore :sad: :sad: I'm just waiting for it to happen here in the U.S. over the Stock Market Protesters.
 

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I don't know if anything will ever stop riots anywhere :sad: They seem to be popping up in so many places anymore :sad: :sad: I'm just waiting for it to happen here in the U.S. over the Stock Market Protesters.
Maybe it is true. Rioting will probably not cease completely, but the numbers will dwindle if people know what the punishment for their crime is.
 

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I don't know if anything will ever stop riots anywhere :sad: They seem to be popping up in so many places anymore :sad: :sad: I'm just waiting for it to happen here in the U.S. over the Stock Market Protesters.
Occupy Toronto ended when the local residents demanded their park back and the occupiers couldn't decide what to do next.
 

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:haha:


Please pardon me, Confucius.

In my own humble lack of understanding, I failed to recognize how a somewhat harsh penalty for theft was meaningfully reducible to "the rich screwing the poor."

I will meditate on this further until I achieve your wisdom.
Exactly.

Apart from the logic being awful, the ones whoe were screwed over in the riots were the honest business (usually small business) owners who lost a lot of their property in these riots orchestrated mostly by hooligans and organized criminals.
 
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