These figures have generated immense media coverage and government attention, but there are definite and opposed class interests at work in the “national conversation” on knife crime.
The right-wing media is using highly emotive events to construct a false narrative with reactionary political objectives.
The impression given is of feral bands of young working class, mainly black, men running riot in London.
In 2017, just one in every 500 violent crimes recorded by the Met was classified as gang-related.
Gangs are believed to be responsible for only 15 percent of murders committed in London since 2010.
This is used to justify calls for ever more violent and authoritarian methods of policing, already including the more aggressive use of “stop and search” powers, harsher sentencing, a more widespread use of taser stun guns and the introduction of ID cards.
The drumbeat for harsher stop and search measures has been relentless, with the leading the way.
However, the average knife homicide rate for 2001 to 2008 was significantly higher than the years 2014-2018.
Hospital admissions for knife assaults have increased since 2014, but the peak was around the years 2006-2007.
Forty people had been stabbed to death in the UK by March this year.
In the 12 months ending March 2018, 285 people across the country were killed in knife attacks, following consecutive rises in 2015, 20.