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THE VOTE: Should we name and shame kids with asbos online?

...or have they got the same rights to privacy as everyone else?

Published on November 3rd 2009.


THE VOTE: Should we name and shame kids with asbos online?
Yes: - 72%
No: - 28%

GORDON Brown is planning to name and shame, on the internet, people who have anti-social behaviour orders against them. Is he bang out of order, or is it about time we took a harder line?

As part of a renewed focus on law and order, the Prime Minister has announced that unruly youths (for all this appears to refer to teenagers) will have their misdeeds publicised via leafleting and online.

Previous Government initiatives to publicly hold up those guilty of anti-social behaviour have been attacked by defendants' lawyers and civil liberties campaigners.

But Mr Brown is no liberal softie, oh no, and he used his latest Downing Street podcast, timed the day after Mischief Night, to insist that local communities had a "right to know".

"I'm proud of our record, but I will never be satisfied while a single British pensioner hesitates about going out, or a couple think twice before heading into the town centre for a meal," he insisted.

"So this week I will set out plans to publicise the names and details of those people subject to anti-social behaviour orders and other orders, using photographs, public leaflets and online.

"The consequences for committing anti-social behaviour should be clear."

Mr Brown said he was renewing the Government's focus on crime in the weeks ahead as he promised to "make life better for the mainstream majority".

But by mainstream majority, does he mean NIMBY, Cameron-cheering Middle England whose votes the Labour Party desperately craves to cling on to power. And do asbos exist to get people used to the arbitary exercise of power without due process.

And why target teenagers, or “yobs” to use the downmarket media's beloved vernacular? After all, sex offenders still enjoy anonymity, and we are still a world away from other classes of rogues' galleries being put up online and sanctioned by the Government.

With cached internet pages, once any info about a person is posted online, it never disappears completely. There is no date a conviction is spent in the e-world and you are never allowed to forget.

Is it fair to brand, in this way, a young tearaway, who may have, a year or so down the line, atoned for their misdeeds - or even joined the Young Conservatives? In theory, such public castigation could affect their employability and other relationships for the rest of their lives.

Or shouldn't these feral monsters have thought of all that when they were giving people in their neighbourhoods the heebiejeebies in their hoodies, smashing up bus stops, driving quad bikes around, drinking cider in the park and thoughtlessly playing music late.

Will they see it as a hall of fame, rather than a hall of shame?

And what about the 13-year-old served an order banning him from using the word "grass" anywhere in England or Wales for six years? A Clackmannanshire man who was banned from shouting at his television. An 18-year-old from Swindon who was banned from playing football in the street. The Somerset man who was banned from having a rooster and the Dolly Parton fan from Leeds who was banned from playing music in her home.

Perhaps you think the people in charge, parents, authorities, teachers, politicians should be named and shamed for failing to set the young people of this fair isle any boundaries?

Or is it, in fact, simply the Daily Mail's fault? Is the whole notion of asbos just another bit of spin without substance and is Gordon Brown clutching at straws (Straw's what? ed).

Go on! Vote on the Homepage.

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17 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

Mike HomfrayNovember 3rd 2009.

More populist grandstanding. How come you don't get these problems in affluent middle class areas? Not hard to work out, is it?

knowwarrameanNovember 3rd 2009.

The only gormless hooded yobs reading this are Lib dem councillors clutching bags of defamatory leaflets. What about asbos for them???

The GuardianNovember 3rd 2009.

Observer said..."People who live in communities terrorised by these people already know who they are anyway. "Hear hear Observer! What's the point of shoving their slack-jawed, potato faces on the Internet where only 'happy slappers' look in and no good can come of it? A much better idea would be a community pillory where the villains can be locked in a standing position whilst their victims hit them in the face, ridicule them and throw things at them for all to see, take photographs and invite their friends. It would be so much cheaper than prison too!

Secret SquirrelNovember 3rd 2009.

Dear Anonymous - surely these people that have been given asbos have not received them for service to other humans and in fact take others civil liberties away. They harrass the vulnerable and they should have their civil liberties taken away. They are parasites that feed off society! Bring back the old style borstels.

Taquin of the ApesNovember 3rd 2009.

Nic16 is quite wrong, we sent a group of 10 hardened trouble making scallies on a safari last year and five of them were eaten by lions, and two others had their legs bitten off by crocodiles. As for the remaining three, we planted heroin in their bags just before the return journey and slerted customs. They are doing 99 years a piece. That is a very high success rate compared to the recidivism of custidial sentences or ASBOs, they won't be offending again! Money well spent I'd say.

Oxo KatieNovember 3rd 2009.

Gordon Brown doesn't care about personal liberty. What a fascist.

CamboNovember 3rd 2009.

No, the staff write those

Victoria StreetNovember 3rd 2009.

An asbo for Gordon brown would be more like it.

AnonymousNovember 3rd 2009.

The most fundamental and basic human right is the right to privacy. Anyone that agrees to this clearly doesn't care about personal liberty, and probably doesn't deserve it themselves.

Colonel BlinkNovember 3rd 2009.

Some gormless hooded yobbo has been at the voting apparatus above so the right-thinking people can't get the 'yes' vote over 92% no matter how many times they vote!

Guy FawkesNovember 3rd 2009.

LivConf said "But Mr Brown is no liberal softie, oh no, and he used his latest Downing Street podcast, timed the day after Mischief Night..." How can this be possible? .....Mischief Night is 4th November! Stop Americanising our traditions!

Nik16November 3rd 2009.

U are political correct wasters who think sending scallies on safari holidays will make the world safe and no crime and no dole.

Rod SpareNovember 3rd 2009.

What kind of an eighteen year-old plays football in the street? He doesn't need need an ASBO he needs specialist care in an asylum

Norman IronNovember 3rd 2009.

What we need is to get the IRA in to do some punishment beatings, so we do. It's hard to be a menace to society with no kneecaps.

ObserverNovember 3rd 2009.

Naming and shaming young teenagers is self-defeating. Once names are published a teenager will be outlawed for ever and become an even bigger nuisance on the basis the harm has been done. That's why Juvenile Courts took the view naming under 17s was counter productive. Some named and shamed will also consider it a badge of honour, making people even more afraid of them. Surely with GPS, tagging etc we should have far more sophisticated means of countrolling these louts. Using such technologies could mean keeping them virtually under house arrest and when they are out and about knowing their whereabouts.The names of these young louts will mean nothing to the vast majority - so how is publishing their details going to help me, or you. People who live in communities terrorised by these people already know who they are anyway.A yes vote here is opening the door to lynch mob and vigilante mentality and I fear that far more than a hooded lout.

Colonel GingerNovember 3rd 2009.

Asbos are a big mistake. Have they led to reduced crime? No. Are people still afraid? yes. What we need is a good war.

CorrespondentNovember 3rd 2009.

I suspect that Colonel Ginger & Nik 16 have posted on this site under the mistaken impression that it's the Oldham Echo letters page.

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