Posted by: Joan Spiller | August 13, 2011

When did it get so bad? And why??


Smashproof & Gin Wigmore were on music TV just now – the song was called “Brother”. As it played, I found myself staring at the screen recalling my childhood. No, I didn’t grow up in South Auckland but I did spend my first couple of years on this planet living in a state house in Napier, NZ.

Maraenui, to be exact. So, kinda up there with some of the less salubrious suburbs of Auckland!

As I said – while I watched the video I was transported back to my childhood: People cutting their hair on the lawn. Children playing on large lawns. Corner play grounds .. Friendly shopkeepers.

Dogs standing guard – probably marshmallow with their pack (family) but good as a deterrent to anyone with less than good intentions. Ours was called “Scamp”.

The video showed graffiti everywhere and that was the only thing that was different to my childhood. There just wasn’t any that I ever saw.. People took pride in their streets for all we had no money, or anything that flash really.

People dealt drugs I am sure.. that goes on anywhere it seems. None of us had any money (nor inclination, to be fair!) for drugs or anything like that .. and yes, I am including parents in that statement. 

They were too busy working multiple jobs to make ends meet let alone to buy drugs! 

Sure, kids got told off by their parents, as we see in the music clip. Heck we got told off by the neighbours if they saw us acting up. And we listened.. But we didn’t get beaten by them nor did we get killed if they didn’t like what we were up to.

Worse than that: they’d tell our parents on us!

I am guessing that this song is about the young boy who got stabbed / killed after he defaced someone’s fence in Sth Akld a few years ago.

I have to admit – when that story aired I found myself thinking “why didn’t the Mother know where the boy .. a kid she described as “a good boy” .. was at that time of night”.

I dunno about you but when CJ was that age: I expected to be around her or to at least KNOW where she was. And generally it was bed at that time of night!

So yeah – like the song says: I got some questions:

What’s changed?

Why do kids not get that it isn’t OK to mess with other people’s property?

Why do people abuse their children – so badly that a kidney can burst. OMIGOD can you imagine the pain that baby was in before he died?

Why do people prey on the young, the elderly, the weak?

Since when did we become horrible beings vs. human beings?

I don’t get it, do you?

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