Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Reclaim the Night

Kate Pullinger writes about the city at night that the Home Secretary is scared of; "At night it's as though the city's history comes alive, bubbling up from where it lies dormant beneath the tarmac: when the crowds are gone, modernity slips away, and the city feels ancient and unruly. How could anyone not love London late at night, or early in the morning? How could the wide black Thames with the city reflected upon it not remind you of everything that is most desirable and glamorous in life?"We walk where we feel safe, & it doesn't matter if that is Hackney or not, for me it was. For me, the world was mine at night, but I did once get a lift home from the police who decided I was not as safe as I thought I was. Their car zoomed across a green open space, with no trees for the bogeyman to hide behind, as I walked home from my birthday party with balloons. A few yards from my front door, they took me to it, but the police see the worst of the world.

The night is also about boys with guns and knives and women's vulnerability. We need to be seen out on the street, the alternative is to stay in our houses, and be held hostage by fear. Choose your risk, know your beat, & reclaim the night.


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