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Sunday, March 04, 2012

On a Knife's Edge

Extra Police being deployed in South London following yesterday's two stabbings.

There hardly seems to be a day goes by without a stabbing somewhere in London. Of course, carrying a knife now is a crime, when I was young it wasn't a crime to carry a knife, although it would have been to use one in a crime obviously. I don't think most young people carried them routinely except when in our scouts uniform and then we'd normally have a sheath knife on our belts in case we wanted to quickly whittle a stick. The occasional boy at school had a penknife, and the very occasional one had a flick knife. The latter being more a case of interest than of intended use.

It wasn't that we didn't have weapons should there be a fight. Not that I was ever involved by choice. The kids who were into such things used combs!

No, we weren't so effeminate at our school that a fight consisted of rearranging someone's coiffure! The rage at the time, for weaponry or not, were metal combs. We all had them. Not that half of us ever combed our hair, nor would they have been much use if we had wished to, as we wore ours at shoulder length, (well it was the 70s!), and it needed brushing. But come metalwork on a Tuesday afternoon, there would be a couple of lads who would be at the grinder honing the "spine" down to a sharp edge.

I only ever saw one incident involving one of the combknives, the problem being it was me and a friend being threatened. To cut a long story short, the person who threatened us ended up in borstal for a few weeks. Mainly because I swore blind it was a knife he was carrying. Funnily enough I ran into the guy a few months later at Griffin Park, home of the mighty Brentford FC. He was friendly enough and promised me it wasn't a knife. I admitted I knew and he was fine about it. I guess he saw it as an occupational hazard. Bang to rights and all that.

And today in South London there are Police roaming the streets, unable to stop anyone in case it's considered discriminatory, until perhaps someone gets stabbed. And it wouldn't be difficult to arrest people these days as to my knowledge, no-one is carrying a knife around legitimately anymore for whittling sticks.

4 Comments:

  • More stabbing?! Mind you in the time of the Krays there was news of this type even more frequently.

    I wasn't aware that carrying a knife was illegal, does that mean that I have to take my tiny Swiss Army knife off my keyring?

    By Blogger Toffeeapple, At 2:48 PM  

  • My best friend is moving, this week, to BR3 3GX. She lived in Dallas for 10 years. I fear for her safety in BR3 3GX much more than I did in Dallas.

    By Blogger Brennig, At 10:14 PM  

  • As an adult you can carry a swiss army knife providing you are not acting suspiciously. If you are, you can then be charged.

    The Krays tended to keep that within the criminal fraternity though. Now it's out in the mainstream of society. Though I suppose we don't have the mods and rockers gang fights anymore.

    By Blogger kennamatic, At 2:17 PM  

  • Hopefully Beckenham will be relatively safe. At least BR is Bromley and not Brixton.

    By Blogger kennamatic, At 2:29 PM  

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