I am deeply disturbed by Councillor Warren Bradley's letter to the Echo this weekend.
I absolutely agree with him that we need to tackle lawless behaviour from children and young people. Threatening our fire fighters, police officers or ordinary members of the public with fireworks and stones in the name of mischief is behaviour that definitely should be stopped.
I also agree with him that some parents are failing their children and failing our society by not taking their responsibilities seriously and not teaching their children the difference between right and wrong, not keeping an eye on them, not knowing where they are when they are out causing trouble.
However, Councillor Bradley has the power to make a difference. He should stop shutting youth clubs, start funding youth workers, provide our kids with exciting and engaging things to do that would beat hanging round on street corners. He should be opening schools in the evenings and in the holidays so kids can play computers games or make films, play basketball, set up bands, record music, paint nails, design clothes, make art, learn to act, learn to sing or play the guitar or the drums, train in the gym…
He should definitely be offering parenting classes right across the city, most parents of badly behaved kids want to do a good job, but they don’t know how to and often their own parents didn’t set much of an example. You only have to watch Super Nanny or Little Angels or any of the many other TV programmes to see how hard some people find it.
If the LibDems wont support parents to learn how to get their kids back on the straight and narrow and they wont open the schools up and they wont pay for youth workers and they close youth clubs then they should not be surprised if the "mischief" grows out of control.
Vermin are defined as things that need exterminating, our city's leader should not be calling Liverpool children "vermin". This panders to the most extreme prejudice, and is about as illiberal as it is possible to be. No child is beyond redemption as far as I am concerned, it is for the adults to put them back on the right road. If Cllr Bradley is not adult enough to take the job on then it is time our city elected a party that is.