I was watching the news yesterday and as always happens my ears pricked up when I heard a name I recognised, it wasn’t a person but a place, Manorfield, when it was followed by Aberdeen my attentions was fully on what would come next. Manorfield was the area in Aberdeen that I grew up in, my family for many, many years owned the Manor house, Friendville, now, unfortunately, a hotel but when families split these things happen. I listened as to my surprise they were talking about a National level cricket match being played on the Manorfield cricket ground, I watched and saw what was clearly a commercial ground and for the second time in my life I was once more angry at Gorden’s College, a privet boys school in the city. This is a matter of principle and one that I have been even more angry about in the past. My grandfather gifted them a huge piece of land more than double the size of the gardens, so it had to be 4 acres, to use as a sports ground for the school. Several years ago I found out they had sold half of it and there was now a housing estate built on it and now the other half is a commercially based sports venue. My anger comes down simply to this, if someone gifts a piece of land for a particular purpose, surely if not legally, it is morally wrong for it to be used for anything else! Don’t get me wrong, this has nothing to do with the money, it is totally a moral issue for me. When the Library he gave to another school was almost totally destroyed by fire, they rebuilt it from the insurance money and quite rightly still gave it the name of “Russell Bell Memorial Library”, it was given to them in memory of my uncle who died in the war. So surely if the Gorden’s College no longer wanted a sports ground they should have given it back to the family who gifted it to them. I am sure it was all done legally, but morally it feels all wrong to me.
I have always found that I get angry with things that feel morally wrong and it so often surprising just how many things can be done legally that just don’t sit right with me. I guess we all have our own levels of moral feelings when it comes to what is or isn’t right, yet there are things that seem to anger almost everyone. It has been proved in the last few months when it comes to the taxes that big companies pay, companies that trade in our country, make a lot of money from us but pay their tax in a country where the rates they pay out at are lower, has angered almost everyone. Totally legal but wrong! For me, the thing that gets me more angry than anything else is the large number of people I see on TV these days trying to argue that they should get some type of really expensive drug on the NHS because it might give them a couple more months of life. In fact, I did already last year, write a post expressing my feelings on that and most importantly what has made me feel that way, my view hasn’t changed at all, other than to say that if anything, I feel more strongly about it now than I did then.
When you try to combine morals and money you are always opening up a minefield and unless your argument is rock solid, thought through to the finest detail you are going to loose the argument, regardless which side you are on. The older I get though the more I really believe that each and every one of us should have the guts to stand up for and live by their own moral code. There is no point sitting there saying this or that is wrong unless you live by it and trust me no matter which political party you might vote for, they won’t do it for you, it is down to every individual to act. Clearly a large amount of my life is centred around health, it is after all the subject I write about daily and it is the subject I feel the strongest about. Morally it is also a subject that I don’t only feel strongly about but hope that I also live to all the moral codes that I have laid down for myself. My post from last year managed to lay out much of it, but recently I have spent more time thinking and more time deciding what my future holds. One of the big issues ahead of me is actually not from my MS or my Fibro but from my COPD, which I didn’t know I had in the last post. 50% of my COPD is clearly down to the fact that I am a smoker, it is because of that that I knew I had to start thinking about it before the worst parts of it actually happen.
If I didn’t smoke, one of the treatments that would have been open to me would be oxygen at home, something that isn’t going to happen. Many people will simply say stop smoking, well that isn’t going to happen, so regardless of how difficult it gets, I am clearly writing off one of the major things that could make life easier and longer. I am writing it off though not just because I don’t want to stop smoking, but I morally don’t think it is right to have it, any more than I would if in the future it was found that I have lung cancer, would I accept chemotherapy or radiotherapy. I made an informed decision to smoke, I knew, not before I had my first cigarette, but before I was at the stage of smoking more than the odd one here or there and it was a daily regular amount, the danger I was choosing to put myself in. It is a moral decision, just as I think someone who has climbed a mountain in all the wrong gear, without training, should have to pay if they need rescuing, I should pay for lung cancer treatment or any of the other things smoking causes and if I can’t, well I can’t have it. I have heard the argument that as a smoker the tax I have paid on my cigarettes has more than paid for it, that is just an excuse and not a moral one in any way. If I make a lifestyle choice then I am the one who has to pay for it, be that money or my health. I didn’t cause my MS or Fibro, or the other things I have, so they are different, but if in the future I am diagnosed with anything new because of my diet, or drinking, or anything else I do or did by choice, that is different. As hard as it is, I honestly believe that we all have to be more morally responsible for the things we do, why should others pick up the bill for what we do out of choice?
Please read my blog from 2 years ago today – 10/05/12 – Lost and terrified at home
I have done it again found myself sitting here knowing that I had a subject I wanted to write about and now I can’t remember what it is. Today though I am going to blame my friend Tracey. We had about half hour chat this morning, with her now back at work and my wacky waking hours catching each other has proved harder than I thought, it hasn’t been helped by the fact I frequently switch the sound off on my PC, so I couldn’t hear the alert when she was sending me an IM to check it was OK to call. We have decided to talk most mornings so that should sort the problem as I have a set time, 13 yrs is a long time to catch up on. I feel at a bit of a disadvantage as I know Tracey has read most of my blog, it’s a little hard talking to someone who has had a window into your life and you have just a big gap in return.
To anyone who doesn’t have a condition that affects their concentration, memory and emotions it is probably hard to imagine the strange effect everyday things can have on you. My MS has caused lesions……