Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Time for change

Last night’s rioting in London and elsewhere in the UK was truly shocking. It wasn’t just shocking to see the devastation, the burning buildings and the total lack of public order, but it was shocking to see kids as young as 10 motivated to get out on to the streets to steal things as shallow as a new pair of trainers, a bigger plasma tv or the latest smartphone. Is that really the pinnacle of this generation’s aspirations? To get their hands on some tacky gadgetry! Is that what it’s worth smashing up your community for?

What really concerns me is the potential for further unrest and violence. If this is what these very young individuals are capable of at such a young age, what on earth are they going to be doing in ten years’ time? Ten years during which they will have gained little or no meaningful education, virtually no engagement with their communities and zero prospect of employment. This is surely a social menace waiting to happen.

And how has it come to this? How have we managed to create a society where pockets of people have no interest or respect for the place they live? How have we managed to produce a generation that’s happy to defile its own doorstep?

Part of the problem must surely be the chronic overcrowding of our cities; the transient populations and the breakneck speed of immigration that mean successive waves of newcomers have had little time to put down sustainable roots. We live in an age where many people don’t know their neighbours and have little wish to do so. The tyranny of multiculturalism which has created ghettos rather than communities may have been well-meaning, but the failure to create a cohesive society where everyone speaks a single language and shares a common standard of ethics and behaviour has brought us to the point where our streets are burning, shops are being looted and the vast silent majority is afraid to venture out from behind their heavily barred and locked front doors. This is no way to live. Something has to change.

We now need leaders with vision, optimism and hope. People who can take their snouts out of the trough for more than five minutes and who can help us build a more decent place in which to live; where those with courtesy and concern for their communities are rewarded and encouraged. It’s surely time for change.

3 comments:

  1. Well put Traction Man.

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  2. Culture must change,
    Adaption to a new society must change,
    Politics must change,
    Judicial system must change,
    Religion must change or be eradicated,
    Family values must change,


    Miracles do not happen , you got to make them happen.

    The whole world is in a mess and I blame the banks who were given too much power.

    I also blame the Government, councils and judicial system.

    Above all I blame family values of years ago, not instilled into the family, respect, morals and good home teaching instilled by caring parents, also strictness, which was robbed from parents by flaming do gooders interfearing .

    These damn fast food outlets, making the housewife lazy. Get shot of them as they have no nutritional value to the consumer.

    Ready cooked food in super stores, full of salt and colour and E numbers, very convenient for the lazy house wife, very unappropriate for their children, not teaching them home basic skills of home cooking, which turns out to be cheaper to make than buying the pre cooked crap in a box.

    Excuses, need to be got rid of as well..... Such as "I work all day so have no time to cook ".

    Oh , I am so sorry for you, but what if you were living in the conditions of good mothers years ago, who had to hold down two or more jobs, had a house full of children and having to cook and clean ?

    Granted times have changed, people have changed, from hard working , struggling and proud people, to a life that has too much to offer, boredom from having everything placed upon them as easy, there are no challenges any more, nothing to stimulate the mind, it is all out there, plain and simple , no struggle to keep the family fed for the week on a meagre income, sod it lets go to Muck Donalds.

    The only way to get society back on track is a full scale war, only then will they know what a true struggle is, and only then will they create a community spirit , which is lax in this generation, they know sod all about a struggle.

    I experienced a struggle in the late 70s, recession was beyond , beef mountains, butter mountains, producing baby benefit book to get in line with supplies.

    I cherish the stories told to me by my elders, how they suffered during the war, shared everything and helped everyone they could, even though they had little themselves, this was community spirit at it`s excellence.

    Many a time I have helped anyone needy, even though I had little myself, we didn`t have incapacity benefits then or any other do gooder benefits, we struggled and adapted to the situation and made good by the experience.

    The trouble of the world is technology, way too far advanced too soon, everyone has the latest gadget, mind numbing mediocre crap. Shocking reports of children on leaving school, who are illiterate..!!!!!

    Now , I used to get the cane on my ass for not remembering the 9 times table.

    Dicipline is lacking, home economics, English, and vital lessons in life children will all need to get on, in this now confused world .

    We all need to get back to basics, take our children in our own hands, and not let the mad society interfere, we owe this to our future generations, as I see things now , our future generations will be dumb, daft and dillinquent, we can only blame ourselves for letting todays society interfere, and not let us have a mind of our own as to how to educate our children, and don`t get me started on the educational sector , do we really know who is teaching our children ???????? Delinquents ?

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  3. Elizabeth McClung: What surprised me the most the decade in the UK was that rioting did not occur with greater regularity. Which cities did riot is indicative, and rather than a macro view as if there was rioting from the Shetlands to Jersey, it was more of micro of disenfranchised and alienated (the same group which rioted in France around 2005, I think, in the same sort of areas).

    Working near one of the largest 'estates' in the EU, but living near the university, I was considered brash for introducing myself to the colleagues on my floor. After several attempts, the closest I got to my neighbors was them vandalizing our car. I had more in commmon with the Chinese family working the fish shop, and wished them a Chinese new year then listened to the usual pub rant against the Jew and immigrants taking jobs (something always occuring in small mid-valley Welsh town....?), warned against being seen with 'ethnics', and told that the moral superiority of a country was how well it did in cricket and neither yanks nor Canadians rated well.

    No, not shocked at the riots. Not after seeing drunk 14 year olds bullying on public buses and neither those around or the driver stopping and taking responsibility for the micro society. Avoid responsibility and blame someone else and 'not our problem' seemed to be hand in glove.

    Well, now it is a problem.

    As for illiterate - the goal for Wales was to strive for an 80% ADULT literacy rate. (ready cooked meals are to blame, is this a wind-up?)

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