/ Guns, Gated Communities and Social Detachment
The urbanisation of the Victorian times forced labour and housing regulations as the middle classes were forced to acknowledge the conditions the poor survived in. Today we put up walls and carry guns so as not to confront a similarly gaping divide.
Spot on, can't argue with any of that.
Even in a relatively safe country like this I can think of a lot of areas I wouldn't dream of living in. In a truly dangerous society like South Africa, not segregating yourself could seriously risk your life even though it exacerbates the very problems your segregating yourself from.
We can carry guns?
Some very valid points, however:
The people in greatest fear of, and at greatest risk suffering, crime are those already living alongside criminals. Living on a rough council estate and being forced to 'socialise' with your local burglars, vandals and wannabe gangsters won't make your life any safer or reduce your fear of crime.
If you're referring to general loss of social cohesion you do have a point, but that's probably due to lack of common goals, values and culture within the UK. People, regardless of wealth, 'class' or background no longer feel part of something bigger. Consequently they tend to stick together with people they relate to, be that recent immigrants, affluent middle class ir the 'working class'.
The sad truth is that you can be the most socially aware liberal in South Africa and it won't save you from a carjacking or armed break-in, especially in that area. At some point you have to put your family's safety first.
I lived in the safest suburbs of the safest city in RSA (Cape Town southern suburbs) but even we had a high wall, bars on all the windows and an alarm that advertised an armed response (there was an alarm but there wasn't actually an armed response - although many neighbours did have). It's not all middle class hysteria, the chances of experiencing violent crime in many urban areas are just completely outside any european experience.
> ... an armed response ...
My (now) wife wanted to bring one of those signs back after her first visit. "24 Hour Armed Response".
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