Wednesday, 10 August 2011

London Calling

Okay, time to get topical. With a spin. I remember years ago thinking going to the gym on a Friday evening was odd. For weirdos with no friends. Same thing for the cinema - going alone was for losers. I was convinced. Of course, there's absolutely nothing wrong with either. In fact I quite enjoy doing both these days. But back in the day I did tend to see things through a narrow perspective of how life should be lived. What was right. What was acceptable. I'd like to think that I've now grown beyond some of those limiting viewpoints.

And so, in a very round about way, to my tuppence about the civil unrest in London and elsewhere in the UK (or in the words of one looted store owner: "they weren't rioting, they were shopping"). Clearly there are bigger debates to be had behind the causes of it all - "Broken Britain", disillusionment with the job market, Generation X-Factor needing quick gratification etc etc. But as far as I can tell the unrest isn't the second coming of the Jasmine Revolution.

I don't have the answers and many, many learned people have come out with some pretty decent insights on it all. I can relate to the frustrations of some individuals involved - as soon as I could escape the housing estate I grew up on in South London, and the negative karma that comes with it, I did. Many I knew didn't. And people often march/protest/represent a viewpoint for a decent cause. But at the end of the day, we all have to live on this big old rock together and I do think that the perpetrators in this case are falling short on respect and perspective. Maybe that's the way they relate to and engage with the world. Somehow, somewhere we've got to broaden everyone's perspective on the world - 'everyone' doesn't just mean the "vandals, thiefs and troublemakers". We can't just be in a space of disrepect and opportunism vs. victims and recrimination. We have to be bigger and better than that. I have no answers - I'm just hoping for more awareness all around.

Anyway, that's my bit of idle waffle on the subject and that's all you'll get on it from me....

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