Editor's Viewpoint: Time for action on yob culture
The disgraceful attack on the property and family of shop owner Sarah Anderson in Glenavy last Friday night is part of a culture of yobbism that is developing in many parts of Northern Ireland.
It must be stopped in its tracks.
Mrs Anderson claims that the trouble began when a large group of young people gathered outside her fast food premises and started shouting and using abusive language.
During a four-hour melee, her husband suffered a cracked cheekbone and her daughter was headbutted and dragged along the ground.
The police were called, but the family claims that they did not do enough to help.
A police spokeswoman confimed that the PSNI were called to the scene at 9.30pm and added, somewhat disingenuously, that they “retained a presence in the area all night”.
If the police were present, why on earth was the trouble allowed to escalate?
Mrs Anderson claims that similar anti-social behaviour against her family has lasted for four years and has cost her some £12,000 in repairs and other costs.
Her courage has been impressive. However, understandably, she now wants to quit Glenavy.
But most people will ask why this yobbism has been allowed to continue for so long, and why have the police not been in the forefront of dealing with such behaviour?
Many thugs have used sectarian labels as an excuse for their brutality and stupidity, but it is even worse when young people become yobs just for the sake of creating mayhem.
It is high time that the PSNI made a more comprehensive and high-profile attempt to eradicate yobbism in general, which threatens the safety of so many law-abiding citizens.
Actions almost always speak louder than words.