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The weakened sense of community in our cites and the solutions

One disturbing trend nowadays is the weakened sense of community in our cities. The two principal causes for this are in my view how our schools and shopping habits have changed. In this essay I discuss these problems and also how they might be solved to eusure we once again know our neighbours.

There is a clear connection between education and community. In the past people got to know their neighbours through their children and formed closed bonds by watching them play sport together or just helping out with childcare. Unfortunately, this connection has been broken by allowing children to go any school and not the one in the neighbourhood with the effect that local children do not necessarily go to the same school. The easier solution to this problem would simply be to make sure children went to the local school in their district.

The change of shopping habits has also had a profound effect on community realtions in our cities. In the past people would shop at their local market or main street, but they now increasingly use supermarkets that are located on the edge of cities. This means people no longer meet people who live in the neighbourhood and it has also led to a loss of community identity. The best way to solve this problem would be for the government to raise taxation on the large supermarkets and reduce it to local businesses in order to bring back the local markets and shops.

In conclusion, I believe the best way for the government to address the problem of loss of community spirit in the cities would be to introduce measures that encouraged people to educate their children locally and to help local businesses and shops to inflourish.

Comments

  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    Often older cities have well developed neighbourhoods where community feeling is still quite strong @lisa. However in bigger, newer cities where a lot of people have moved in fairly recently, then this is lacking.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    @mheredge It is a sad topic in fact. One of my grand-aunt ,who is the aunt of my aunt, was discovered when she passed away several days later. Her husband has passed away a few years ago and her body was eroded and ugly smell was full of her house. She lived by herself , and I do not know why she was reluctant to live with her children, because my aunt told me her children asked her several times to live with them together. Most Chinese older people do not want to the welfare organizations to spend their last years, in the rural villages , almost all the neighbors are familiar with each other, but in the cities, people come and leave, even neighbors do not know each other.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    That's very sad @lisa. My mother too, is very independent and does not want to move in with my sister. My sister contacts my mother every few days and lives ten minutes away but I am not sure the neighbours in the small block of apartments know each other all that well.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    @mherege I think almost all the neighbours know each other well in countryside, so my parents prefer to live in countryside istead of living in the city, I think, but most of elder people do not have other choices except moving to the cities and living together with their children when they are too old to move, because they need to be cared.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    Sometimes it takes effort to get to know neighbours (who are not always very friendly) and time. Communities generally take time to develop and it can be the luck of the draw to find yourself living in a good one @lisa. For me living in London, whilst I liked it a lot, there was no community feeling in my street and few people knew their neighbours even after several years. When I occasionally visit the house where I used to live and see my neighbour who has lived there for over 20 years, he says now all the people who used to be there when I lived next door have gone.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    It is a pity that modernization makes people keep distance and vigilance with others, even neighbours, there are children or teenages who are living in my villiage do not know me, and I do not know them, either. Sometimes my mom tells me one acquaitance has passed away, and I know one people who know me can not be met again.Most teenagers do not know me, and I do not know them, either, maybe their parents and I were classmates. @mheredge
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    When you move away from a place, it's much more difficult to keep in contact with people and keep up to date with what is going on. I find every time I return to my old neighbourhood I feel totally out of touch @lisa.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    Yesterday I chatted with an old friend who is from Liya, and he asked me one question : Do you connect with Linda, Sarah and Eva? All of them are my former colleagues of my first company. Not only our neighbours but also our former colleagues, we do not connect with each other frequently when we are not in the same circle, I hope I use the right word-CIRCLE. @mheredge
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    I know the feeling @lisa. My circle of school friends still keep in touch with Facebook but rarely do we meet up. I met with a couple of school friends I hadn't seen since leaving school this year though, and it was really nice. Even if we don't have much in common, to catch up occasionally, it's good fun. But as I'm travelling a lot, it's not easy to see friends all that often. I now have another circle of friends in Nepal and another group of friends in France.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    My classmates of university have never got together for commermoration of our university lives, furthermore, even if we come together, we will discuss mostly about family, spouses of each other, and children. Life is common for most of us, our life circles are different. By the way, we have a class wechat group, there are few people chatting there, maybe one or two times per year. @mheredge
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    I've never been to a reunion with university friends, and only once did I go to a school reunion @lisa.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    There is a joke about school reunion in 2017. An old man, about 70 years old, met his first love in their school reunion, and he thought he still loved her very much. He asked for a divorce with his wife when he returned home, his wife agreed, but he was refused by his first love when he expressed his feeling to her, at that moment, he regretted the divorce with his ex-wife, and he asked to get married with his ex-wife again. His ex-wife agreed. But she regretted to re-marry with him after half a year, then she began to revenge. She asked for a divorce with him at last, and she was sucessful. @mheredge
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    I'm not so sure that this is a joke @lisa as this sounds like a very sad story of a man who was not thinking what he was doing and ruined what might have been a perfectly satisfactory marriage in pursuit of something that was not real.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    School reunion is dangerous domenstrated by this story, and women, although on her old age, do not understand the passions of men, from my view. @mheredge
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    The only school reunion I ever attended was for girls only as I went to a girls' school @lisa. I would have thought that most women understand how fickle some men can be. This sounds like a fairly typical story - the wife just being a bit slow to agree to take her ex-husband back as she should have perhaps told him to take a walk sooner!
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    Actually no matter how old the men are, they are keen to loving beauties, and I really do not understand their thoughts. @mheredge
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    I think it is because a lot of men never grow up @lisa! So when they get older, they still believe that young, attractive girls will fall for them.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    Haha, exactly. Compared with mothers, fathers awalys like children whom need to be took care of. That is why there are lots of confrontations between young couples after they have their first child. Mother needs to take care of both of child and her baby husband. @mheredge Mother is instinctive, but father is always young.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    I'm not sure this is such a problem in Britain @lisa, but I can imagine in a traditional society where the guys expect women to look after their every needs, they might get jealous of the attention a grandchild might get.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    edited January 15
    Actually they are not jealous of their grandchildren, but they are turely jealous of their children. @mheredge Most grandparents in China pay much more attention to their grandchildren, in other words, they do menial jobs for their grandchildren. When their children were young, they were busy with working and lives, which limited their energy and made them pay less attention to their children. But they have enough spare time when their grandchildren are given birth, so they pay almost all of their attentions to them, which like a kind of compensation, I think.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 29,156 mod
    This can be very helpful when both parents have to go to work @lisa. I think this is missing to a large extent in the UK as usually the children live a long way from their family so they can't so easily rely on their parents to babysit or help them take care of their children.
  • lisalisa Posts: 744 ✭✭✭
    If children and parents were not in the same city, parents would go to their children's cities to babysit their grandchildren. It is very common in China, and of course parents and children will live in the same flat or apartment. @mheredge
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