Blaming Teens for ram raids isn’t a solution, it’s an emotional knee jerk

I think the adults need to take over the ram raid debate and seek means to de-escalate this rather than add fuel to the fire.

I appreciate and fully acknowledge seeing children commit organised crime like this is genuinely concerning to the wider community.

But I beg us all to take a deep breath, appreciate the uniqueness of this moment and the extreme pressure on so many people right now.

I’ve said from the beginning that Covid is a triple peaked crisis, the first was the physical impact on physical health, the second was the economic impact and the third was the impact on mental health.

Human Beings are social creatures, the worst punishment is isolation – we’ve all gone through a unique universal experience and it’s damaged many.

We are seeing that mental health pressure exploding everywhere from the Dumb Lives Matter protest on Parliament’s Lawns, to domestic violence, to fights in Supermarkets to a spike in crime, to the increasingly toxic online misogyny,  to the Wellington Middle Class Marxists screaming to send in the military to bash protestors they didn’t like…

…everyone has been impacted mentally by these unprecedented times and the true cost is yet to be felt.

Polling for the Mental Health Foundation found 36 per cent of people surveyed were experiencing poor emotional wellbeing, up from 27 per cent a year ago.

Add to all of this stress the enormous jump in rents and cost of living crisis and you have desperation, anxiety, anger and fear all combining into the current maelstrom.

That’s why I think Mark Mitchell’s suggestion to revoke the Police chase policy is probably the single worst thing we could do behind arming Police with heat seeking missiles.

Don’t get me wrong, I have a certain appreciation for Mark, I thought the Police Minister was petty and beneath the Mana of the Minister when she denied him access to speaking with Police Commanders, and we’ve enjoyed vigorous debates in the past, and while his point that these kids seem fearless and live under the false illusion there are no consequences to their actions, announcing a change in Police policy at the height of this ram raid crisis is only going to scare the fucking bejesus out of these adrenalin pumping kids and will almost certainly result in fatalities.

We don’t need dead people added to this problem.

Of course every effort must be taken to catch every perpetrator and have them dealt appropriately through Youth Court processes or social agencies, but understanding these ram raids are the psychological and economic symptom of a deeper malaise that is running through post-Peak Covid NZ is a far greater starting point in terms of decision making than allowing our fear and anger dictate policing policy that might make things worse.

This is but the beginning of the post traumatic trauma this country is working through, we have to de-escalate and act like adults here, not become a fucking Lynch mob!

We have enough Lynch mobs as it is.

These damaged kids need our help, their criminality is a reflection of a gated neoliberal society who enrich the wealthy while providing crumbs for the poor.

The economic outlook is far more grim than we are admitting and these pressures are only building.

We need alternatives, not more of the same failed conservative social policy knee jerks.


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