In the week following the riots that began in Tottenham last weekend, police and community leaders have united to praise the rapid decrease in street crime, robbery and arson. In the scramble to take credit for the quelling of violence in the capital and other major cities, an unlikely protagonist has emerged in the shape of the X-Box community.
The widespread looting and violence hit sportswear and electronic retailers the hardest, with Currys and JD Sports outlets seeing their entire stock depleted in the name of disorder. However, in the aftermath of the riots, the streets have seen an eerie calm wash over them, with a distinct lack of youth presence on street corners and park benches.
A community leader from the Tottenham area, who declined to be identified due to his current bail conditions, explained the decrease: “Since last Saturday, there’s been a meteoric rise in organised Pro Evo and Fifa tournaments, for the X-Box and PS3. These kids just didn’t have access to these services before the riots, but now everyone’s got their own console and can get a game anywhere. They’ve even arranged for prizes for the winners of the tournaments, such as trainers, tracksuits, Iphones, Ipads and laptops. They’ve really turned a corner.”
Sources close to high ranking Met Police officers stated the long held belief that these kids needed “to get it out of their system”, hence the softly-softly approach on Saturday night. “These kids were bored. They literally had nothing to do and were getting increasingly frustrated by a summer holiday with no access to the services they need.” This view was shared by some of the newly burgeoning X-Box community: “Before, it was well hard to get a game on Pro [Evo]," said one. "If anyone had an X-Box they just kept it to themselves ‘cuz they knew that the whole estate would be round if they got a sniff of it. Now, we’re all in the game and it’s great. Hanging out on the streets looking for shits and giggles is only a laugh for so long.”
When asked about the causes of the riots and David Cameron’s denouncement of a ‘sick society’ and ‘broken Britain’, Laetitia, 12, said, “I really don’t think you can blame Cameron for the riots ‘cuz he inherited these problems from the previous Labour government. If we want to rescue the economy we’re going to have to make sacrifices.” With that, Laetitia eagerly strode off into the silent night in anticipation of opening her well earned prize of what looked to be a new DVD player.