13 Reasons Why... Newcastle needs to talk about its feelings more? / by Kian West

With the hit Netflix TV series '13 Reasons Why' firmly in my mind, I started to think about a comparison between Hannah Baker and Newcastle as a city, what would be included "This is Your Tape". 

I am in no way trying to make light of suicide, mental health or anything like that, if you need help please contact Lifeline: 13 11 14 Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800 or in an emergency 000.
It made me think, a lot, some of that thought brought me back to a topic that I hold close to my heart: Newcastle. Does she need saving? How is she doing? How are we all doing? 
Here are 13 things I think we talk a lot about that tend to hold us back...

  1. Fig Trees, Pine Trees or trees in general - It's hard to forget how topical the cutting down of the Fig Trees out the front of the Art Gallery and Newcastle Library. So much passionate debate around their removal. We seemed to get lost in a debate over their value rather than wether the city could indeed afford to keep them and where that money would come from. They were indeed beautiful, but I do also love now looking at these incredible buildings that are now visible. Currently there is a similar conversation around some trees that will need to be removed to make way for the V8 Race next year and it has me wondering about the topical topic of trees. 
  2. Railway line - Similarly, the closure and removal of train lines from Newcastle station through to Hamilton had a city divided very similarly to the way the train lines divided the city. People would be impacted, changes would potentially hurt some businesses, some argued best to just keep going the way we always have done. It's hard to predict how the new interchange located in Newcastle West will help or hinder the city into the future, but it sure is interesting to watch the structure as it comes towards completion. 
  3. Public/street Art being painted over - What about the uproar when Valley Kitchens had the gaul to paint their own building as part of an upgrade to their site. Heaven forbid they paint over some street art that the community had somehow decided that they own. Sure, it was beautiful, that's not really disputed, but it wasn't community owned.
  4. Late Nights - We seem to live in a time where the night is once again seen as evil and only sinister people would possibly want to head out after dark.  
  5. Buildings that need to come down (e.g. Palais / The Store) - The Palais Royale has long been a talking point in this city with it being pulled down and a gigantic KFC popping-up in its place. Too often I've heard people respond that "they should have made sure they kept that building! It was part of our heritage" or some-such. I assume "they" are the council, as if they have an endless supply of money to fund these projects, these same people sat on the couch waiting for progress to happen around them without being part of the equation. Similarly I hear The Store building is set to be demolished and voices increase in volume expressing disdain for the removal, at yet, what have we done with the building these past few decades? 
  6. Events in the city 
  7. Noise complaints
  8. Poking fun at our Mayors (Jeff McCloy Brown Bag / Nuatali Mint Slices)
  9. We love our music but we might not want to support it
  10. Are we allowed to love the new University of Newcastle city campus building

11. We want change but we can't seem to agree on what
12. Complaining
13. Complaining about complaining

if you or someone you know need help please contact Lifeline: 13 11 14 Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800 or in an emergency 000