But that has all changed with the coming into being of the new Dutch ‘Danish’ government. Right from the outset, out new PM, Mark Rutte, promised that persons defending their property from crime will in the future not be arrested and prosecuted for assault or ‘grave bodily harm’. And curiously, this seems to have galvanized the citizenry. All of a sudden we see stories appearing in the MSM of would-be robbers being thwarted by well-applied force.
The latest examples of these are reported by Elsevier (NL).
In Groningen, as well as in Amsterdam attempted robberies have failed. In Amsterdam the employees of a robbed drug store chased the two robbers. They saw the men fleeing into an apartment building, which is where the robbers were arrested.
In Groningen two men forced a pizza courier to hand over his money. A passing motorist saw what was happening and managed to throw one of the assailants in his car. The 18 year old is now being held by the police.
These are just the latest in a spate of stories where ordinary citizens stand up and won’t let themselves be passive victims of crime. Last week there was the proprietor of a French fry stand who poured boiling oil over a would-be robber. In that same week a burglar tried his luck in a Harley Davidson dealer (what the hell was he thinking?) and managed to get himself beaten to within an inch of his life.
In the last case, the police did detain the owners the of the dealership, since the violence applied was deemed a little too excessive (and from what I’ve heard there is a little more to this particular story then a mere robbery being thwarted). However, in yet another case, the owner of a tobacco store, who managed to ward of a robbery through a swift karate kick to the head of the robber, was commended by the mayor of his home town, Zaltbommel. The mayor of Zaltbommel even went so far as to recommend this course of action (NL). The mayor recommended ‘Beat the crap out of them’ and assessed the performance of the tobacconist with the words: ‘It’s magnificent that people do this’.
This is a sea change in Dutch society of the last 30-40 years. Whereas left-oriented governments unfailingly punished violence applied in the defence against crime, this new, right-wing cabinet seems to recognize that the ultimate defence an individual has is himself and the courage and force he can muster.
Although one could, in a sour mood, conclude that the authorities are tacitly admitting that our police are not up to the job, it is refreshing to see our authorities finally abandoning the injustice of prosecuting victims of crime for defending themselves and their property. This is a development that is as welcome as it is unexpected. There may be hope for us yet.