Jack Straw has decided that gang crime is not the cause of badly brought up children or economic hardships. No... it's, that normally Tory catchall phrase, absent fathers. Oh please!
I've never known my father. He has had no influence over me at all. And I grew up ok! The only "problem" is I HATE football, which in this country is practically a crime!
As a child of a teenage single mother I always find attacks upon single mums and their kids to be deeply disgusting. These families are blamed for all of society's evils when the real evil is that most of society doesn't care about anyone else in this country and allows those who need assistance (be it financial or moral guidance or just good old fashioned discipline) to be left to do what they like.
Nobody speaks up when young people play up in public by playing their music loudly or verbally harassing someone. Talk to anyone and they weakly, cowardly say "Well you never know if they are carrying a knife or not". Now that statement is to me the weakest get out clause ever... it sends a message that says "Just carry a weapon" then you'll be left to rule the streets as you wish.
That's the real problem, not the bloody parents who the children pretend to be all sweet and innocent to back home.
It is everyones responsibility to ensure bad behaviour in public is faced down and ensure the perpetrators are ostracised until they behave in a civilised way.