HigterFrequency OVERSEAS NEWS



international news _ JONTY SKRUFFF _ 1st Novemober, 2005

Slam Star Slams Scotland's Violence Epidemic

The United Nations branded Scotland 'the most violent country in the developed world' this week in a report suggesting that almost 2,000 people are seriously assaulted in the country each week.

The ten year study compared violence rates between 21 countries and discovered that serious assaults are almost three times as common in Scotland as America and 30 (thirty) times as likely as in Japan, as well as being up almost 50% since 1995.

"I am embarrassed as a Scot that we are seeing this level of violence," David Ritchie, an accident and emergency consultant at Glasgow's Victoria Infirmary told the Times, "Politicians must do something about this problem. This is a serious public health issue. Violence is a cancer in this part of the world," he said.

Glasgow producer Orde Meikle from Slam and Soma Records described the UN's findings as 'a terrible, shameful statistic' though added 'I can't say I'm surprised'.

"Gang culture seemed to fade away a little in the 90s but in Glasgow it never faded too far and it's really back with a vengeance at the moment. Being part of a gang seems very much to be the cool thing to do," Orde told Skrufff.

"You do hear about a lot of incidents and it always has been a rough old town. I thought during the 90s it had cleaned itself up a little but obviously the UN figures suggest I was wrong. Though having said that, although it may sound bad here, violence is not around you constantly."

Orde admitted, however, that one former Soma executive lost two front teeth in a brawl ('for stepping into a domestic argument between a couple') while another staff member broke his hand in a fight.

"I think everyone in Glasgow has been involved in a fracas at some point or other, it happened to me when I was at school," he admitted.

"I think most people who grow up in Glasgow grow up far more wary of situations and violence, whether in a club or on the street, you've always been aware it has a violent side."

Slam release their new compilation Nightdrive on Resist Records shortly. (Jonty Skrufff)

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