A Blog About Punching People In the Face

On the London Riots

In Thoughts by Tyson on November 8, 2011 at 12:08 am

Mike Tyson has been reading about the London riots. Mike Tyson is not surprised.

Having been to London once or twice, Mr. Tyson has taken note of the quiet rage bubbling beneath the surface, and remembers how, one day, near Piccadily Circus, a band of youths erupted without warning into a massive brawl. He recalls watching, along with several hundred other people, how a young man beat another over the back of the head with a skate board until his shirt was speckled with blood, and what struck him, apart from the apparent mindlessness of the thing, was how ordinary it seemed to everyone else.

Mr. Tyson is well aware of how mindless violence sends the chattering classes into a tailspin. He is aware that violence is not something that magically disappears after a spell of digital opium, a McDonald’s milkshake or a football match, and he is disappointed when the echo chamber acts as if warfare, mindless or otherwise, is a sign that Something Has Gone Wrong.

Mr. Tyson believes the locus of violence is helpful, inasmuch as Americans have taken to thinking of England as something of the cradle of civilization, an assumption borne not out of any keen knowledge of history (see War: the Revolutionary, of 1812, I, etc.) but rather the brilliant affect of its culture. Mr. Tyson reminds Americans that the same folks who brought us this brilliance are, at this very moment, smashing cars with baseball bats. The tribe abides.


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