Living in Scotland

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I thought I’d have a little ramble about living in Scotland, of course just like anywhere in the world my experience of my environment is partly shaped by what my income is, where I was brought up, what I do and who I know. The city I currently reside in is sold to the general, money-in-the-pocket sort of folks as cultured, sophisticated, historical, clean, friendly and scenic among other things and don’t get me wrong most of the time the city center does live up to its reputation, as far as cities go its a beaut. But of course where there is money to be made and in a civilization where tories exist of course theres going to be an element of sugar coating and decay, if you’ve watched trainspotting you’ll know what I mean. You just need to take a short bus ride out of the immediate city to find dog shit ridden pavements and rubbish making home in grassy banks, where the unemployed and low income individuals and families are segregated into what the scots call ‘Schemes’ other wise known as a densely populated area of council houses where anti-social behavior is often rife. This probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise, its pretty obvious our current system caters to the rich and marginalizes the poor but what I found particularly disgusting was that recently businesses in Edinburgh where rallying for the city’s streets to be cleared of beggars in order to create a ‘harassment-free’ retail district. The move was proposed by Essential Edinburgh who manages the city-centre business district, who aimed to gather support for a new bylaw that would ban begging within Edinburgh’s city centre. This was met with fierce criticism and out-cry, especially from local non profit sandwich shop ‘Social’Bite’ who already employ two people that where taken in off the street, they suggested instead of casting out these people we should employ them, there fact that was ever up for debate though is outrageous. Since the public shaming of the proposal it seems Essential Edinburgh have done a bit of a u-turn and said they will potentially back Social Bites solution, but action has yet to be seen.

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