Saturday, 20 April 2013

Margaret Thatcher ( A Legacy)

 


This wasn't the post I was going to write... But as we live in the town where Margaret Thatcher grew up.... and there seems to be so much talk about her at the moment I thought it would be timely for my two cents (or tuppenny bit :) to be added to the pot :)

This is part of a comment I left at another blog, whose opinion I truly respect even though it differs from my own :)
I always like to see people before arguments. Although the argument can be an important part of forming clarity and perspective, people are so much nicer aren't they.... And so much more important than one ideology or another.

So if you're not into politics avert your gaze now :)

And if you are but you don't agree with me, God Bless you. The dissenters voice is a sign that we are all still free enough to speak our hearts while honouring the hearts of others.



I have to say that unless you are in that deep, profound rut of poverty it is very difficult to truly understand it's effect.
So many things are impacted by it. It can be very disabling and dis-empowering. I would even argue that it takes a great deal more effort to overcome an impoverished background and "rise above" than it does to maintain an affluent one.
The media has sadly begun to demonise the poor of late. It is always easier (and less complicated) to blame those socially and economically below than those above, when problems arise. Although it is becoming more and more obvious that many of the problems we face do indeed come from above; global corporations, industry, government and of course the major banks.

We live in a council house, my husband was a  refugee who first landed on English soil as a teen. I was regularly homeless in London from the ages of 16 - 19  and both my parents have suffered from mental health problems for years, so I can speak from the "other" perspective with some clarity.
Our experience is unique, but probably quite representative of the socially disadvantaged.
We both work incredibly long hours yet still have not been able to buy our own home.
I see a lot of disillusionment where I live.
People feel disenfranchised.
Many people don't have cars and only tiny gardens or no garden at all. The houses are in a really bad state of repair, so many of the children here can't get a sense of life outside their immediate reality.
Their perspective is foreshortened.
Recent cuts to public services will most likely, only compound the problem.
It is much, much worse than this  in an inner city of course.

People often blame the poor for their circumstances but surely it is much easier to make responsible choices when a wealth of choice is available to you.
Surely it is far easier to take advantage of opportunity when opportunities to learn, grow, thrive and try new experiences have been presented to you from birth.

I deeply believe that nobody is born with the ambition to live an unfulfilled, socially stigmatised, poverty stricken life. If welfare becomes your way of life, it is something to be pitied and a symptom of a problem that has a much larger cause.
The rich can also far more easily hide their problems or find monetary solutions to them.

However, I think the saddest thing is the divisions these economic discrepancies create within communities.

Our church is located right opposite Margaret Thatcher's old home.
Our town is a tenacious one, a hard working one yet, still a poor one and it is probably a fairly good example of the legacy Maggie left.

10 comments:

  1. yes agree with everything you say, she decimated some parts of society, and thats so hard to forgive. I left the Uk just before she came into power, and whenI came back to visit, it was no longer the Uk I recognised!
    You have written the truth!

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  2. Thank you both for your comments! I was a little nervous about what I might find in the comment box today :)

    I know other people who have said exactly the same "Everything Things". Things are very different to how they were in the past.

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  3. ((hug)), the same problems are here in american as well. blaming the poor is so easy, hurting those who can not defend themselves, who need compassion and assistance is more of what is needed, and yet we turn our backs to it.
    and i love what you said about it being easier to make different choices when you have so many choices. it is hard when you don't see or feel if you have much of anything at all.

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  4. I read a report recently commissioned by the current government which concerned the lives of the poor. The reports author was shocked by what she found on two levels, first for all the reasons you give feeling disenfranchised, the lack of choice, the existing rather than living and secondly because she had not realised how hard it is to break that cycle she had assumed like most people do that it was because they were lazy and can't be bothered. I don't know how governments can make policies that effect people's lives when they absolutely nothing about the way we live and make assumptions based on their own completely different experiences. It is easy to pick on those with no voice.

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  5. This blog came across my FB newsfeed because it was shared by a very good friend of mine. My comment in reply was simply this. "Depressing". I am not wealthy, but I certainly aspire to be. As I write this, my bank account is severely overdrawn. I am a self-employed handyman, re-opening my business after a 3-yr furlough. My wife is a Registered nurse. She did not begin to pursue her nursing degree until later in lift,, She was 48 yrs when she graduated from nursing school.I am 60 yrs old, and was at one time much better off financially. If I let my circumstances dictate my attitude......well....the fact is, I don't. My only response when things get tough is to WORK HARDER, LONGER AND SMARTER. If I am broke, I don't wait on the government for my next check. I dig and scratch and then dig and scratch some more. Although I would have easily qualified for unemployment last October when my employer became short on work, I didn't consider it for a moment.I took a temp. job - traveled out-of town for three months, home only a few days during that time. Much of that time we worked 7 days a week, 12 hrs a day. I worked with ex-cons and young gangsta-wanna-be's who hated the sight of me and harassed me daily. And it was heavy work - lifting and handling 70 to 150 steel beams into place to erect warehouse pallet racking. The pay rate was a paltry $10per hr. How many times...I wanted to buy a bus ticket home and snuggle with my wife. I shed tears. But there was an automatic deposit, weekly going into our bank account as a result of my efforts - and I knew that if I did not endure, well.......I had but one choice....ENDURE.
    God instills in every man and woman the miracle of creativity.....as we were made in the image of God, we are made to create. We have the ability to imagine...to invent....to prosper. In this great country...the United States of America we are all born with the freedom to be whomever or whatever we choose.
    When people begin accepting the premise that "the poor have limited choices and the wealthy have more choices"......well that is when they are defeated. EVERYONE IS SELF-EMPLOYED. It is the duty of every parent to prepare their children to "make a living". Doesn't nature teach us that? How long does a bird allow her young to eat worms from her beak? Not long. The young bird's instincts are to follow its parents' example and seek its own food.
    I am a multi-skilled craftsman in the commercial and residential handyman/remodel industry. and in industrial maintenance. When I apply for a job I do not expect that the company will hire me because I need work. I expect the company to hire me because my skills and work ethic will help them produce more and make a greater profit.Why should I resent the owner of the company because he is wealthy? If he did not believe he could profit from his venture, then why would he have taken risks - mortgaged his house - spent time away from his family to make the business work.I hane never gotten a job from a poor person.
    I do not allow the phrase "I CAN'T" into my vocabulary.
    When I read this whining self-pity in this blog it makes me want to regurgitate. You are what you believe you are. You pass along this pathetic attitude to your young, and their young. If you have ever advised your child in guidance and method to seek government financial assistance - you have DISHONORED the definition of PARENT.....and you have DISHONORED GOD.....
    The next time you pray....Dear God, give us this day, our daily bread......Try replacing it with "DEAR GOVERNMENT, give me this day my daily bread......... If your conscience has not been too seared, I believe you will want to regurgitate too.

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    1. Hi Bob :) Thank you for your side of the story. I really aprreciate you taking the time to share it here :)
      I can see from what you have written that you have worked really hard all your life and used your energy and skills to support your family in any way you could no matter what.
      You have given them a wonderful gift.

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  7. This is a beautifully written piece, my favourite of the Thatcher takes, you are lovely.

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    1. Thank you Starr! So are you :)

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