The Cause of Crime: Too much Freedom?

It is, of course, the old story — the abuse of liberty. We shorten the hours of work, and we offer nothing in [its] place … except the street … They begin by walking about in little companies [smoking] cheap cigarettes, called, I believe, ‘fags’ … they occupy a great deal of pavement, they hustle each other, regardless of other people; they get up to impromptu fights … they make rushes among the crowd; they push about the girls of their own age, who are by no means backward in appreciating and returning these delicate attentions; they whistle and sing, and practise the calls of the day and the local locality.

Walter Besant

O’Neill, Gilda. The Good Old Days: Poverty, Crime and Terror in Victorian London (pp. 46-47). Endeavour Press. Kindle Edition.