don’t solve the symptom…

Posted by on May 12, 2005 in general thoughts | 0 comments

I consider myself lucky. I had some really good lecturers at Uni and I learnt a lot that I still use today… sure, there were a couple of old school “bla bla bla” lecturers, but mostly they were inspired and passionate.

1 thing in particular stuck in my mind whilst being taught the incredibly mind taxing subject of SSADM*, the lecturer would repeatedly emphasise the need to solve the root problem and not the symptoms.

Think about that for a second.

Always ask yourself if you are solving the root problem, or just one of the symptoms.

Banning Hooded tops + Caps from shopping centres is solving a symptom. Who is addressing the underlying problem of why these individual feel the need to obscure their faces from the world or behave the way they do?

Surely it’s not too hard to see that this is at least partly a reaction to a life on film? I find it slightly creepy how much of my daily life is on CCTV camera.

Imagine being a young kid, overwhelmed by the amount of information and advertising bombarding you daily through TV and the internet… add to that the teenage angst urging you to rebel… criminalisation of hanging out in groups in public places, being moved on by the police… What would you do? I’d want to hide from the world.

It’s fair to say that there are groups of youths (god I feel old writing that!) who are intimidating and acting in an “anti social” way. How much is our fear of these youths magnified by the criminalisation of innocent kids copying their peers or hiding from the world?

The traditional media’s pre-occupation with hyping big issues to sell papers undoubtably adds to the paranoia. (Recent headlines like, “hooded chav hell” aren’t exactly tackling the wider issues!)

Lets not also forget the fear that the establishment had of Rockers, Mods, Punks… Goths… Chavs is just another in a long line of teenage tribalism rebelling against a world we created. More fool us if we don’t take note.

I’d like to see these root problems addressed. Getting kids inspired at school and making them see that life is whatever they want it to be, rather than an enemy to fight against.

Springers thoughts for the day:

  1. Solve the Problem, not the symptoms or the problem will persist.
  2. Life is what you make it, live life.

(*SSADM – Structured System Analysis and Design Methodology – it is as scary as it sounds.)

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