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Every Day Repressions in the Police States (US and others) now common place

Like a sharp constant pain that slowly raws the nerves and turn into a dull persistent ache and eventually forgotten completely, people in the West should be shocked at the every day repressions that they suffer, where their “freedoms” are restricted with the bare minimum of justifications of moral platitude.

If you watched the movie “V for Vendetta”, the opening scenes showed a dystopic London where “curfew” is imposed on all except the police every night, and loudspeakers warn people that they can be arrested if they violate the curfew.  That is the sign of the police state.

Except a REAL police state would not even bother to announce it through the loud speakers.  The REAL London, as with 75% of cities in US, already have “curfews” for the young, under 18.  They don’t tell you loudly, they just arrest the young, “for their own protection”, and then demand that their parents pay fines to bail out the children.

China doesn’t have it.  US, Canada, UK, France, Taiwan do.

Even Libya and Egypt don’t have it.  Which is how they went through the “Arab Spring” Revolutions at the hands of protesting teenagers.  They were only too late to impose curfews AFTER the revolutions started.

FUN facts:

(1) in 1857, the British enacted Ordinance No. 9, the “light and pass” ordinance of HK, imposing a curfew on HK’s Chinese residents between 8PM and sunrise. Any Chinese who wanted to be on the streets during the night must first obtain a pass.

(2) in 1942, many US cities passed curfew laws banning Japanese Americans from the streets at night.

(3) similarly, during WWII, Nazi Germans imposed curfews on Jewish populations in several countries in Europe.

Of course, the rationales were that the Japanese Americans during WWII might be prone to crimes at night, and the Chinese in HK might murder the White British at night (or are just all criminals any ways).

Funny how the Americans are now treating their own children with similar disdain.

On the surface, “teen curfew” sounds morally justified.  Statistically and historically, teens appear to be more inclined to commit crimes, petty or violent.  The crime rate typically peak around age of 17, and then the crime rate drop off as age increases.

But statistics can be reinterpreted many different ways.

(1) Historical data changes and fluctuates.  In recent years, especially during the boom years, teen crime rates dropped across the board without any new actions to curb teen crimes.  Which suggests that teen crime rates were high because of socio-economic factors.  Which makes sense:  Teens who feel optimistic about their future are much less inclined to join gangs or commit crimes.  Pointedly, Libya, Egypt, i.e. Arab Spring countries, all had extreme high poverty that heavily impacted teens.  Hence, they were inclined to rebel and riot, because they had no hope for their future.

(2) Reduced sample or culling effect.  As teens commit crimes, those who are caught are removed from the population by incarceration.  Even if they are likely to continue to commit crimes, they are no longer in the population to keep committing crimes.  Which means, teens are actually not more likely to commit crimes than adults.  ONLY means that MOST criminals start committing crimes when they are in their teens.

Well, arguably, then enforcement against teen crimes is reasonable.  But “curfews” to prevent teens from gathering at night is just irrational, since there is no data that Teens would more likely commit crimes at night, nor that adults are less likely to commit crimes at night.  (indeed, if teen crime rate is high, then it would actually make more sense to curfew teens around the clock, not just during night).

(3) Despite the curfew laws, which have been in place for decades, teen crime rate was apparently unaffected by such laws.  Thus, despite all the theory, teen curfew laws simply don’t work to prevent teen crimes.

Average US teen face over 2,100 curfew hours in a year, restricting their freedom of movement about 7-8 hours every night.  (there are only typically 2000 work hours in a year in US).

By all accounts, enforcement of such curfews is a huge waste of police man power.  So why do it?

The answer is in the history books:  the previous curfew laws (in US and UK) were made to apply to even adults, as a mean to remove the unwanted, the homeless, the vagrants, and in the 1960’s the hippie protesters from the streets.  (The rationale for those laws were the same as now, to prevent crimes).

It was only after the courts struck down the “adult” curfew laws, that the Western governments went after the teens for curfew, with the same rationale, but slightly different story.  Apparently, the Hippie Generation quickly forgot the lesson learned in their youths, and didn’t mind “curfewing” their own children.  (Oh, in other words, it was an outrage that their parents imposed curfew on them, but it’s now OK for them to impose curfew on their kids.)

From the very origin of such laws, it was intended not to prevent crime as the dubious claim, but rather intended to prevent and disperse political dissent at night time.  WHY?  It’s more easy for a political movement to gather supporters at night (after school, after work), and it’s harder for government to maintain control around the clock.

By a simple night curfew, governments can prevent a lot of supporters from gathering, and cut off the momentum of a movement before it even starts.

If a political dissident movement is “ONLY 18 or older”, it’s pretty much non-viable from the start these days.  And that is the point of the teen curfews.

* Then, there are the “anti-loitering laws”.

Instead of calling for adult curfews, blanket “anti-loitering laws” are also passed in the West.  They pretty much read just like the older curfew laws.  “Thou shall not remain pedestrian on the sidewalk for more than 3 minutes within 10 feet of Establishment type X between the hours of 10PM and 3AM, or thou shall be cited, and fined.”  reads 1 such law in San Francisco.

So, even if you are older than 18, you can still be punished for violating curfew essentially, especially if you are protesting outside of Establishment type X for some reason.

So, in essence, the V-for-Vendetta type curfews are all over the West, and not nearly as dramatic and obvious as in the movies, but essentially to the same effect.

But people in the West, “freedom loving” as they claim to be, seem to be oblivious to the cage that they live in.

In the dark, they cannot see the cage.  Until they are pressed up against the wall, and realize their freedoms confined to about 2/3 of the time every day of every year.

How is this not the police state?  Because they simply don’t KNOW that they live in it.

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  1. ltlee1
    May 9th, 2015 at 19:55 | #1

    苛政猛虎弗格森; 逼良为匪美利坚.

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