Stuff. It just happens, doesn’t it…

The past weekend has made me cry, fear the place a live and changed the way I look at the people around me.

Firstly a good friend of mine was beaten up in the middle of Northbridge on the weekend as he was walking to a nightclub – not more than 4 blocks from where I live. In a city of friendly people, he managed to walk in front of the crap ones who jump on unsuspecting drunks as they stumble down the road.

He didn’t actually know what had happened to him, he just “came to” with many bruises on him and the police standing over him – they eventually took him to hospital.

It wasn’t until Monday when someone heard it on the radio that we all realised the full extent of what happened; A group of youths came up from behind, hit him in the head, and when he hit the ground, they kept kicking him. This is bad, but this isn’t the worst part.

The worst part was that 2 or more people rang into the radio station to testify that they too had seen the violence. But not one of them helped my friend. Not one of them tried to stop what was going on. That’s a pretty Bad Thing.

So here I am, suddenly not trusting the people walking around on the same street as me.

The second punch in the stomach?

We were all out last night having dinner, and my friend who got beaten up was with us, and telling the story of what happened. One Bright Spark asked the question I hadn’t dared to ask; were they Aboriginal kids?

I wished the question had never been asked, and I could hear myself in a parallel universe yelling out “NO, I really don’t want to know the answer to that”. But I didn’t, instead I sat there with a tight little smile affixed to my face (partly to do with the question, and partly to do with the fact that I was eating dinner with 5 people I didn’t know, and it was making me feel shy and self-conscious).

I didn’t want to know the answer because if it was Aboriginal kids, suddenly the crime takes on a race element that I know will irrationally make me feel nervous whenever I walk past any Aboriginal Kids in Northbridge, and if it wasn’t Aboriginal Kids, than how dare Bright Spark ask the question and immediately assume crime in Northbridge is perpetuated only by Aboriginals.

Really, there’s no winning that one – and I wish to god I didn’t know the answer to the question….

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