We ‘share’ things every day on social network sites, but do we share our lives any more? With so many families split by divorce and children living with confused loyalties, it’s no wonder that kids, when they reach adulthood, decide not to share anything with their parents or grandparents.
So, have we become a culture of isolated people? The recent terrible floods in the UK have bought communities together, but I wonder if it’s friends and neighbours who help each other, rather than family members who have moved away? And what of the many elderly people living alone and lonely, even though they have grown-up children, who have lost touch, either deliberately or not?
Technology means that we all do things at a distance. Sending an email or a text has become more common than phoning, so you don’t even have a voice to bring you close to the person contacting you. Even a hand written letter would be better because it tells you that someone has taken the trouble to sit down and pick up a pen and write you more than a one line email.
We stare at a TV screen. a laptop or computer screen, isolated in our houses, only connecting with people at work or, if we have children, with them and our partners or spouses when we are exhausted, in the evenings, where we gather and watch the TV screen or the laptop and computer! The tiny window of possible togetherness, the weekend, often means the kids doing their thing and parents acting like taxi drivers or doing house chores. Is there time to think? Time to eat together in a leisurely manner? Time to talk? Are we all living in our own small worlds and in reality, living lonely lives?
It’s time to start sharing our lives with the people who love us in a more pro-active way. That’s my view and I’m sticking to it!
Million of pounds worth of food is dumped every year in the UK, yet a recent article in The Guardian reported that three men are to stand trial soon for taking some tomatoes, mushrooms and cheese from dustbins at the back of the Iceland supermarket chain. The solicitors for the men have attempted to get the Crown Prosecution Service to drop the case, but have had no success. The CPS say the case should go ahead, ‘in the public interest’.
One of the men to be prosecuted will put forward the argument that he took the food because he needed to eat. He doesn’t feel he has done anything wrong taking edible food that would go to a landfill site.
Taking food from skips outside supermarkets is not new. It now has a name: ‘skipping’. The amount of food that these stores throw out is a disgrace. Why are these stores, that make huge profits, allowed to get away with such irresponsible behaviour?
The fact that people are becoming so poor that they have to resort to stealing food from skips is something I thought I would never see in my lifetime. We should all be concerned about how much of our own uneaten food we discard. I grew up at the end of food rationing. I remember very clearly the way my mother never threw anything away and we didn’t have a fridge! Now, I am guilty myself of throwing away food. It’s hard to be frugal when there is such an abundance of food available. But how long will this be the case?
The recent violent storms that have hit the UK means that future food production could be affected if the weather continues to cause the devastating floods we have seen across the farm land across the Somerset Levels. I don’t want to be accused of scare-mongering, but we are becoming depleted in so many of our natural resources that surely it’s time to stop and take stock of the way we manage our own consumption of food?
Now Fracking is on the agenda. No one really knows the outcome of this invasive procedure to extract gas from the earth. There have been a few protests but against the multi-national companies who will carry out the work, they are a drop in a very large ocean. And our young people seem so unpoliticised – very few of them ever bother to vote. Will future generations be silent, passive and acquiesce to everything? It’s a worrying thought.
We must become more concerned about food waste. Our lives depend upon it.