Tuesday, 19 April 2011
The royal wedding and the art of distraction
Before I start, I should just say that I have nothing against the British royal family, I really don’t, but that said, I have to ask – what’s the big deal with the up-coming wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton? Let’s face it, he is an upper class, privileged toff and she’s an upper middle class woman. This is hardly the class-breaking event that it is made out to be. If it were a match between William and a single mother on benefits, that would be something to read about. I also don’t see why it should be a cause for celebration for the whole country at a time of austerity measures not seen for decades with services being cut, benefits being cut or reduced and people losing their jobs left, right and centre.
Surely, at a time of economic hardship, this wedding is being used by the Government as a way of distracting us from more important matters such as the destruction of the National Health Service, the closing of public libraries, tackling global warming and the increasing rise in the cost of fuel. It makes no sense to me that the media is jumping on the royal wedding bandwagon by giving us a blow by blow account of every second and every possible detail the general public shouldn’t really care about but does simply because we’re told that we should care.
From the moment the royal wedding was announced, the Active Citizen Entitlement Partnership group in Thurrock, that provides free training courses for people who wish to become active citizens, advertised a course on how to organise your own street party, based solely on the royal wedding. I could not believe my eyes when I saw it and have become angrier with every piece of coverage this wedding and its preparations are getting.
There are much more important things to be worrying about at the moment than a stupid royal wedding. I am more concerned with whether the NHS will become an increasingly privatised organisation leading, inevitably, to a two-tier health service where the best treatment is given to those who can afford it and the dregs being left to those on low incomes. I am more concerned with the poor state of the mental health provision in my local area. I am more concerned with the widening gap between rich and poor. I am more concerned with the fact that the UK is giving billions of pounds to other countries whilst the Coalition Government cut our services to the bone. And lastly, I am concerned that people are being distracted by an insignificant one-off event by the Government and the media so that more important matters that affect everyone in the country are left unexamined and unquestioned by the public at large.
I am left to wonder – am I the only person in the UK who sees what is happening and is scared at the public’s inability or unwillingness to care?