Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Not quite in the wilderness

I was pleased that yesterday's South Wales Echo not only reported my bit of rhetoric at last Friday's Licensing committee meeting, but also ran a short ep-ed piece as well, voicing concern about the predominating culture of debauchery. Some people I meet are quick to express appreciation that I spoke out, and express their fears and worries about not being able to go out at night. And this is not to do with fears of violence nor even of crime, but the fact that it is no longer a relaxing and enjoyable experience to share the streets in the evenings, light or dark, with crowds of shouting staggering foul mouthed revellers.

The collapse of social courtesies and controls plus the relentless commercial exploitation of alcohol driven 'leisure' aided and abetted by, I won't say over-tolerant, but rather over-indulgent city policies - 'value-free' secular policies - has unleashed a kind of chaos that will be difficult to pull back from, unless it's possible to re-build a consensus based on what is health and good for all citizens without exception. An economic recession that bit fiercely enough to curb drinking to excess would also cause much suffering in other areas of life. Would it ever get that bad? I wonder.

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