I have another post written but I re-read it and it’s silly and self-involved (occupational hazard of a personal blog post), and I don’t want to be either at the moment.
After Friday night’s events in Paris and Beirut and recent horrendous events in Syria, Nigeria and elsewhere, I don’t feel like being flippant or self-centred. I feel like crying, travelling round the world, hugging people, fostering refugee kids, becoming a politician and somehow fixing things. What I certainly don’t feel like doing is hating people because they follow a particular religion or look a particular way. I don’t want to generalise. These few murderous terrorists are not representative of the Muslim religion or Middle Easterners or certainly not immigrants. Any anger or condemnation must be aimed at them alone and their fucked up belief that massacring hundreds can somehow be justified.
But how can it be justified? And how can this be overcome? The best friend of British victim Nick Alexander wrote a post on Facebook condemning the attacks but NOT the attackers. It’s an incredible piece about carrying on regardless and holding no one in judgement. He says “Life has to go on or else the bastards win… instead (we must) try to teach every human being on the planet that problems can be solved without violence.”
So how do we teach this? I want to instil in Arthur that violence and hatred only beget violence and hatred. So how do I explain this kind of atrocity to him when it inevitably happens again and he is old enough to ask why? Why do these few people seemingly hate others whom they have never met and who are uninvolved in their foreign battles? I think all I can do is try and show him that we are all connected and must be supportive of others and respectful of their beliefs but that ultimately there are bastards out there and to be scared of them is to give in. My son will be mindful of others and respectful. I hope he will be unafraid to live the life he chooses without guilt or shame. He will not be a hate-filled bastard, selfish and ignorant of the lives of others, deranged by self-assuredness. And that is really all I can hope for him. That he turns out decent, I guess.