26 June 2011

On Exposing the Vancouver Rioters

(This was sent to Cross Country Checkup today.) 

The issue of naming rioters has become convoluted because of the shaming.

Initially, the point of posting videos and pictures online was to identify riot participants.  That is a perfectly reasonable response by Citizens who watched the G20 riot last year.  Canadians watched as those who looted and destroyed property went unidentified; observed the number of ‘responsible’ people who stood by and let such destruction happen.  During the past year, we have become more aware of a ‘somebody else’s problem’ attitude rampant in our society, where we expect the police to do all the work and blame them for their lack of success.

The posting of these images as an attempt to identify participants is a good way for Citizens to help our police do their jobs.  As citizens, we are not only entitled to look after our communities, but we are also required to do so.

Shaming, on the other hand, is taking control back from our trusted legal institutions.  It is too easy for a picture to be misinterpreted and incorrect conclusions drawn.  The Riot Couple appeared to be engaging in sex when in fact, the woman was injured and her boyfriend assisting her.  This is why we have experts to investigate.  The gathering of information by the public is helpful, but leave the actions to the experts so that justice will be served and we will live in a fair society.

Jeff Rose-Martland
Our Duty

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