The British secret agent Odette Hallowes was awarded both the George Cross and the French Legion of Honor in recognition of her heroism during WWII. Some years after the war, a burglar broke into her mother’s home, and among the items he stole was Odette’s George Cross. A public appeal for the medal’s return was made, and the burglar sent it back with the following note:
You, Madame, appear to be a dear old lady. God bless you and your children. I thank you for having faith in me. I am not all that bad – it’s just circumstances. Your little dog really loves me. I gave him a nice pat and left him a piece of meat – out of fridge. Sincerely yours, A Bad Egg.
Even this criminal had enough identification with his country and its history and accomplishments to recognized that Odette’s GC was something that really ought to be returned to its owner.
Does anyone think there are many among the current UK rioters who would do the same?