How technology works is a mystery to me, the thing I do understands that radio, television and the internet are like having a huge library at the touch of a button. I read the programme notes and a word or two catches my eye, well maybe more than two words. The words in question are: John Fitzgerald Kennedy and Lyndon Baines Johnson both Presidents of the United States of America. This is recent history, the 1960s, I was a young adult, so in the wider sense it is the history of my time. I was pretty much involved in the job I had, I was teaching in a junior school and discovering day by day that I had a great deal to learn about teaching and life. I was aware of President Kennedy, the leader of the free world, I watched television and read the Observer, but honestly the dramas of daily life in the classroom loomed large in my mental energy.
The programme on PBS America explained in some detail how the Civil Rights Acts were passed in 1964 and 1965, it was not a simple process, many senators in the South were very hostile to African Americans being considered an essential part of the democratic process, L.B.J. was the President who understood that this inclusion would be best for all Americans: for a peaceful, prosperous and civilised USA.
I would like to see an analytical and clearly expressed programme on the BBC which explained the British parliamentary system as clearly as this PBS programme. Democracy always needs a strong, informed defence as we can clearly see with the situation in Venezuela .
Yesterday I watched the Documentary Of The Week and it really cheered me up. (Its not often that you can say that about a documentary.) It was ‘Old People’s Home for Four-Year-Olds. It was full of charming children relating to old people, most of them in their eighties. This age group is of particular interest to me as with luck on my side I will soon be one of them. The narrator mentioned that many of these senior citizens suffered from varying degrees of depression, also that they spent many hours sitting in a chair,( has someone been spying on me?) The narrator went on to say that the less a body moves, the less it is able to move, of course absolutely true and the second plain statement the less one engages with life, the more depressing and lonely an individual will feel.
A group of young extremely alert people had the brilliant idea of putting together two groups of people at opposite ends of the age spectrum. The children were then given simple tasks to do and encouraged to find a partner amongst the older age group, very few adults could resist the smiling face and polite request of a small boy or girl. Even the most reluctant adult was after awhile persuaded to join in. There is hope for us yet.
I give it 5 *****.