ABSTRACT

Introduction The security discourse, and its lower-order category – the incivilities discourse, which pervades the contemporary ‘risk society’, is an efficient tool of political power and a stimulant of feelings of belonging to a particular community, which often paves the way for various laws and policy against ‘otherness’. Security is a value, a legal good (Rechtsgut), protected by numerous laws, and a basic human need. It is, however, also an industry, a business that feeds on the individual’s fears, and one of the most abused terms of today. As ‘security’ is an extremely emotive word, capable of stopping short the logical mental or cognitive reasoning process, it represents a jewel in the thesaurus of securitising rhetoric, which holds also other entries, such as ‘risk’, ‘(dis)order’, ‘efficiency’ and ‘threat’. In the name of security, governments with law-and-order orientations tend to expand the field of the prohibited by including minor, socially undesirable or uncivil conduct that is normally a part of everyday experience in a modern, pluralistic, urban society.