An academic friend of mine (who monitors levels of street violence in the USA and UK), drew my attention to this disturbing footage. It appears to show an elderly Chinese man involved in an altercation with a young man on London’s Tube network (the District Line – to be precise). Of course, as I was not there, I have no way of knowing exactly what happened, but I can offer some investigative speculation.
- The video may have been deliberately ‘cut’ when uploaded, so that the incident looked like a crazy old man foolishly attacking a young man. If this is so, then there might be a much longer video showing the full incident. I think this is the case, because it would seem odd for someone to just start videoing at the point the film begins.
- If the old man is ‘Chinese’, as I suspect, he would in all likelihood be from Hong Kong when it was a British controlled colony (prior to 1997). This type of person is usually very culturally conservative, and not inclined to misbehave in public, or get involved in matters that do not concern them. On the whole they are very quiet and self-contained.
- When asked what he was doing, the old man (in a heavily accented voice) appears to say ‘hit me’ – implying the man he was tackling had just assaulted him. If this was true, then the old man was acting in self-defence. I would further surmise that due to the level of anti-Chinese racism in the UK, no one in the Tube came to his aid
- What happens next appears to racially motivated violence of the most extreme kind, which sees the young man repeatedly punch the old man about the head (as the old man remained seated whilst the young man was standing), and then knee him in the the face. It is obvious from the footage that old man is unconscious a this point – again, no one in the carriage comes to hi aid.
- Self-defence law in the UK permits a British citizen only to exercise enough reasonable force to nullify an attack – any force beyond this measure is considered the crime of ‘assault’. Even if the old man was in the wrong (and something tells me he wasn’t), what happened to him was a crime.
- Press reports suggest that the police arrested a 68 year old man and charged him with assault – obviously the old Chinese man. The young man at the time of the incident had not been apprehended by the police. This seems to me that an old Chinese man was the victim of racially motivated violence, but was himself arrested and charged by the police – presumably after he had regained consciousness.
Blaming the Chinese victim of racially motivated hate-crime is not new in the UK. In 2005, for instance, Mi Gao Huang Chen was beaten to death on a Manchester Street by a rabid gang of White and Black British teenagers. His partner – Eileen Jia – who tried to protect his body, sustained terrible injuries in the attack. When she awoke handcuffed to a hospital bed, she was informed that she was being charged with ‘assaulting’ minors.