Over the past year, there were more newspaper stories about young people and crime than about all other stories on teenagers put together. The media refer to teenagers are yobs, feral, as sick, as scum. Unsurprisingly, research commissioned by "Women in Journalism" has found that 85% of teenage boys say newspapers portray them in a bad light. They think adults are more wary of them now than they were a year ago.
Fiona Bawdon, a committee member for WIJ: "When a photo of a group of perfectly ordinary lads standing around wearing hooded tops [is] visual shorthand for urban menace or even the breakdown of society, it is clear that teenage boys have a serious problem ... our research shows that the media is helping make teenage boys fearful of each other."
I wish that half of the media's attention was devoted to young people trying to access mental health services than this endless focus on feral youth. One in ten young adults (aged 16-25) believe "life is not worth living." Fully 95% of imprisoned young offenders have one or more mental health disorder.
We're so obsessed with being afraid of youth that we can't see their problems anymore.