I’m lying in bed trying to fight off a cold – this equates to good blogging time!
Here’s an old draft that I summoned up from over a year ago. I meant to write about this Guardian article because it really resonated with me.
The sub-headline is “We’ll never get to grips with the ‘gangs’ problem unless we start talking to dangerous teenagers – not just about them”, which kinda sums up the article nicely.
“I have lost count of the number of conferences and seminars I’ve attended where we sat around talking about dangerous teenagers. It’s so much easier than talking to them”, says the writer. “f you want to tackle the problem of kids joining gangs and carrying weapons, you should talk to those kids and find out why they do it.”
This reminds me of my reaction to the falling of the twin towers on 11th September 2001 – “Why? Why would someone do that to us? What must they think of us to want to do that and how canwe repair that relationship?”
Jesus – the guy who lived over 2000 years ago that I attempt to follow in the footsteps of as part of my Christian faith – sets a great example to us. He didn’t sit with the leaders, the learned people, the priests and politicians of the day, discussing how to tackle societies ills. No. He got out there and spoke to people, asked them what they wanted, and tried to meet their needs.
Our politicians seem to see youths and those who behave anti-socially as a problem that needs to be solved, so they sit around and talk about the people and work out what they can do to solve this problem.
But, as the expenses scandal of 2009 showed, most MP’s have absolutely no concept of what it’s like to be poor, and they have no empathy with the poor.
Jesus understood because he lived in amongst the poor and oppressed. We should do the same! Though, as the article says “Of course, this is terrifying”.
There are far too few articles in the press that speak with a rational voice about addressing the problems of society in the UK by actually trying to understand the source of those problems, rather than trying to tackle the symptoms. This is one of them. It is a rare jewel and I mark it here with a strong encouragement to read it carefully and give thought to its message.