YET another teenage stabbing, at Victoria station. When will it all end? Another young life extinguished for ever.
Why do we suffer this epidemic of knifings? Hardly a day passes without reports of another incident.
Pupils or teenagers carrying weapons? Why? In my schooldays, it was common to carry a 'penknife', which had pencil sharpening facilities.
Of course, if one so wished, then criminal injury could be inflicted upon another person with a penknife, but this generally did not occur.
Why? Because we were, it would appear, better 'brought up' - ie, there was a culture of self-discipline, encouraged by parents and teachers in the classroom.
Suitable retribution would follow should someone fall out of line.
This has now disappeared, and standards have been turned upside down. The pupils are actually interviewing the teachers as to their suitability to teach.
The world has indeed gone mad. Teachers now seem to be expected to 'entertain' the pupils.
Surely a culture of discipline and respect for the teachers and the institution should be inculcated into the pupils prior to entering the school in the first place, not primarily an attitude of what they can expect from the system.
When I regularly witness children, some as young as 10, wandering the streets late at night, the thought crosses my mind, where are the parents?
What are they thinking about? Discipline and care seems to be delegated to teachers, who have been left impotent by successive government legislation on pupils' rights, rather than focusing on their responsibilities.
Now a teacher can easily be suspended from work on the simple basis of a pupil's allegations which may be proved utterly without foundation.
It seems also the case that even the police are expected to employ a 'softly softly' approach, in case someone's human rights are violated. Perhaps we need to look again at this 'something for nothing' society, such as free public transport for youngsters, without anything expected of them in return.
This could encourage a better culture to the one we have now.
IAN WALKER Dalgarno Gardens