Nicola & Greta Square

“Hey Nicola, where do I score some Meth?”

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THE WORLD’S GONE MAD, you couldn’t make it up and lunatics have taken over the asylum. I hear myself saying these phrases every day.  Life is now peppered with examples of politics interfering with personal experience that feels to me a little Tea Party bonkers.  But what would I want to be different?

What, indeed, would I say to my Scottish and UK politicians?  Now that possession of Class A drugs has been effectively de-criminalised in Scotland, my first question to Nicola Sturgeon would of course be, “Hey Nicola, where do I score some meth?”.  But what else could I ask of both the UK and Scottish government?

Like Winnie the Pooh I need to think, think, think.   Maybe it’s harder to return us to sanity and logic than I think.   No, wait, its pimps easy – here are some of my requests.   Well, ten for starters…

  1. Trans people’s lives matter. Not many people would disagree pretty much with a live-and-let-live approach.  Support and tolerance yes.  Taking away the rights of others to support this marginalised group?  Not on. Most of the furore is concerning people born men so the law should protect but not donate from women’s rights.  Easy solutions and compromise can be found – for instance having a third category gender neutral toilet – but no, a hammer-cracking-nut approach seems preferential to those in power and you have to ask – do they just not like women?  Are they using tiny, marginalised groups as a way of putting women down in the way that drowning women in the middle ages was not really ever about God? My law?  Practical and emotion-free and balance on any trans rights dilemma.  Stop solving little problems with floods of gigantic solutions and emotion that sets groups against one another.
  2. Our environment matters. Yes it does.  So tackle it sensibly as adults.  Listening to children about complex environmental issues is like using the Famous Five to form policy for law and order.    And the environment should include our immediate streets.   Housing inspectors checking that gardens are tidy should be re-instated and our streets should be clean and tidy.  A stiff warning and then charge them if local authorities have to do it for them.  And local authorities?  Stop buying stupid stuff like terrible art in down-at-heel communities to cheer them up.  Do you know what would cheer them up?  Better public services.  Make it so.
  3. Education matters. Turning places of learning into mini mental institutions where the focus is supporting children’s emotional journey rather than their academic journey.  Do you know what happens to people who are leaving school unable to read and write?  Now that is a self-esteem issue.  The solution is letting schools focus on their main job.  Throw out the national curriculum.  It’s nonsense and time wasting.  Governments and society should expect results, but schools don’t need to be told how to get there.
  4. Policing matters. Stop the police turning into to TV-inspired parodies.  Stop TV reality shows that encourage playing up to the camera in too-important-to-be-influenced roles – not just in the police but in any publicly funded organisation.
  5. Inheritance matters. If we want to leave someone out of our wills irrespective of our relationship to them, we should be able to.  In Scotland, we can’t.  It’s wrong and takes away personal choice.  Change this law, like now.
  6. Ageism matters. Millennials – stop saying stupid stuff like ‘I was the first in my family to go to university’ like some 1960s cliché.  Tony Blair sent half of us to university to do the same job as our parents would have done, but now unhappily.  Probably the most important factor in your life will be class group.  The divide which is spreading about boomers and millennials (what ever did happen to Gen X?) is setting people against each other and focuses on age bands rather than class group.  Stopping casual ageism from our tv and social media should be stamped out using the same way that was used to make behaviours like racist talk or drink driving unacceptable.
  7. Posters matter. Let’s make it illegal to show signs in various publicly funded bodies to let us customers know that the organisation will prosecute us if we abuse them.   I don’t start relationships with others by letting them know my rights and my intentions if they break the law on me.  I don’t expect to have my doctors’ receptionist peer at me, whilst not giving me an appointment, whilst standing in front of a poster reading me the rules.  Make those stupid posters illegal.
  8. Health matters but please, NHS, stop preventing illness with silly lifestyle advice that doesn’t work. I don’t want you to pay for adverts to tell me to eat fruit or that smoking is bad, it might be fun and interesting but it’s not your job. And whilst we are at it, stop beatifying particular jobs.  Thank tax-payers for paying if you must, but unless the NHS staff start working for free, then no we don’t thank them. No talk of angels. No bonuses. No discounts.  No sanctimony. Out with you all.
  9. Customers matter. To the extortion racket that is the BBC, f you can’t attract viewers, my capitalist friends, you should be out of business.  That might make you stop giving viewers what y’all think is good for us and give us what we want.
  10. Power matters. Make rules for social media and ban them (yes turn them off completely) if they start getting above themselves.  Which they absolutely have.  So we make a law against getting above yourself.   And never let any unelected Batman style rich person tell us what to think.  All those media giants that disliked Trump so much are way more terrifying than any temporary government. The sheer audacity of them.

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For avoidance of doubt Greta Thunberg did not ask Nicola Sturgeon where she could score some Meth, nor did Gail MacDonald, but it would have been funny if either had. And why not? Original photo courtesy of Getty Images.

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