I DON'T think we can have much confidence in the Prime Minister's pronouncement that he will resolve the problems associated with gun crime by holding a "Summit" with his ministers and senior police officers.
I don't know why he chooses to call all his meetings "summits." I have attended a number of them and they are no different to any other meeting I have ever attended.
Why does he always hype up such things? Why not call them by their proper name?
However, this is not what I intend to write about today. It is the phenomenon of young people carrying and using weapons on our streets.
There has always been a small section within our society who are willing to use violence against others. But if the media is to be believed we now have a whole generation of youngsters who regularly arm themselves with a knife or gun with a view to causing harm to others.
I do not believe this to be true. The vast majority of young people in this country are no different in their abhorrence of violence than I was at their age.
They live their lives in much the same way as we did. They may be more concerned with fashion and the way they look because they have more disposable income and they are bombarded with advertising in a way we were not.
A modern teenager will also expect more from society than my generation due to their being brought up with relatively more affluence.
Cars, foreign holidays and technical gismos were reserved for rich people in yesteryear.
But in their hearts most young people wish only to find a decent job, a nice home and someone to share their lives with.
This said there are pressures on our children to behave in a way which is against their natural inclination. Bullying is a major contributor to this.
If they are constantly subjected to "taxing"- having their money, DVDs and mobile phones taken off them by other children, or "happy slapping"- physically abused and humiliated - they will either try and avoid their oppressors; do the same to others more vulnerable than themselves or join those who cause them pain.
Whilst the majority will fall into the first category, a growing number take one of the other options, thus exacerbating the problem.
The grouping together of children in this way, partially as a protection mechanism, leads to the formation of gangs in many of our urban conurbations.
Unfortunately this decline into primitive tribalism is endorsed by much of the popular music and the idealistic portrayal of gang culture across the Atlantic.
Having worked for substantial periods in the USA I can say how damaging gangs are to the fabric of that society, parts of which are on the brink of destruction.
We have also reached a stage in our society where being different is applauded and self expression endorsed particularly by those who do not have to live with the consequences.
Moreover, our children's tolerance to the results of violence have been raised by films and computer games in which to kill or maim is portrayed as normality.
I am pleased Tony Blair is taking an interest in this subject but not in his perceived short term solutions.
To increase the penalties for carrying weapons will have little or no effect. He needs to look at ways in which he can protect the majority of our children from the minority which is corrupting it.
He needs to rethink his permissive attitude to the availability of sexual and violent material.
He needs to return powers to parents, teachers, social workers, probation officers, magistrates, judges, prison officers and police officers to control - with corporal punishment if warranted - the unruly elements.
He needs to stop making excuses for them and reward those who work hard and strive for a better life rather than those who do wrong.
He must also stop the trend towards reverse discrimination which has the potential to destroy many communities.