Cheer up and enjoy the music

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HIS ARTICLE of August 11 advocating the reintroduction of the death penalty was in my view beyond the pale.

But few of your readers could disagree with the shrewd analysis by your contributor, Philip Circus of the complex social causes behind the recent appalling riots in London and elsewhere (County Times, August 25).

The social problems with which district councillor Mr Circus grapples are of biblical proportions - ‘as ye sow, so shall ye reap’. Without doubt, we have produced the most greedy, self-centred generation of young – and not so young – people to have walked this earth. And we only have ourselves to blame.

Cast your mind back to the introduction of one of the very first credit cards – ‘Access’ – which sported the provocative slogan, ‘Takes the waiting out of wanting’. In short, I want it – and I want it now – whatever the cost.

Or take the slogan of a leading conditioner - ‘Because you’re worth it’. The emphasis in each case being upon the all important consumer. Even hospital patients are now referred to as ‘customers’.

Add to this heady mix of consumerism the import of so-called political correctness – a term first employed by the American New Left during the 1970s. Also the zeal of the health and safety lobby along with a large dose of militant feminism. And not forgetting unrestricted immigration and the abject failure of our multi-cultural society.

In short, we are witnessing the rapid decline of a country once renowned for its stoicism in the face of adversity along with its civilised good manners, respect for property and consideration of others.

At a local level, we can see first hand unrestricted consumerism at work. The appearance in West Street, Horsham, of a store selling replica firearms along with pipes for smoking cannabis is yet another indication of our lack of a corporate moral fibre.

Without doubt, the ongoing decline in organised religion has also contributed to a society where the concept of what is right and wrong is left solely to the individual consumer – without any external spiritual guidance.

But let’s cheer up. Starting on September 4, we can all look forward to our town’s inaugural ‘Festival of Sound’ organised – with the blessing of our district council – by Horsham resident, Ms Sharon Dow.

The day – featuring no less than 31 local bands – will coincide with yet another food event – ‘The Big Nibble’ – and will mark the start of a month of live music in Horsham and the surrounding villages with the aim of bringing more night-life to our sleepy Sussex market town.

It’s a cultural first – move over Glyndebourne!

ROBERT B. WORLEY

Ayshe Court Drive, Horsham