No words can adequately describe the level of repulsion felt towards the depravity that occurred in Manchester last night.
Nothing is more cowardly than targeting innocent children experiencing a night of joy, witnessing one of their favourite stars, before having those memories brutally destroyed with life changing injuries and experiences.
In order to disassociate ourselves from the convenience of the truth it’s easy, and perhaps understandable as an immediate coping mechanism to humanise such atrocities, to take a broad brush and brandish a particular race or religious ideology responsible for all the evil being perpetrated in the world.
It would be incredibly unjust and dangerous to do so.
It would be be mindful first to reflect upon current events with historical precedent in mind and remember the acts of sickening evil committed by the Nazis under the guise of Christianity.
For some reason it seems to rests easier on our collective consciousness’ to be able to blame those who we cannot relate to — be it in their beliefs or cultural heritage. The truth is the overwhelming majority of people who fall beneath the umbrella we broadly conceive to conform to the terrorist stereotypes we as a nation hold are as sickened by the atrocities as we are, only they have to experience the added burden of living with the stigma of being collectively guilty by association.
The media, and a minority of the general public as a whole, should be ashamed of some of the things they have written. Surely we have reached a period in human history to be enlightened enough to recognise that these people only masquerade as religious types as an excuse to perpetrate the acts they commit. No god, and I confess my own naivety to such matters of religion, which ever you believe in, would ever sanction the killing of innocent people regardless of what religion they claim to represent.
Yet that is what people have done throughout history because of religious texts and ideology.
That irony will never be lost on me.
It would be easy to sit back and say nothing. To let the effect of such repulsion alter behaviour and reform opinions of what we are free to do, but in order to beat these people we must mock there intention to terrorise our way of life by celebrating it and refusing to bow down.
Our actions are who we are.
We are not defined by our darkest moments — but who we are in spite of them.
This isn’t some magnanimous critique of wider societies method of grief, it’s an acknowledgement of the hate that these deplorable acts have cultivated. Every time an individual resorts to attacking those who are different the people who have perpetrated these acts win.
We can never let them.
In order to survive we must band together and honour those who have been lost by living the way they deserved to.
Nothing can be said that will alleviate the pain of those who have lost most closely, but this is a collective national grief which will leave wounds for the world to see.
How we heal will show the world who we are.
At a time where our country, our societies, our neighbourhoods have never felt more divided, where those people we once viewed as our brothers and sisters, neighbours and friends have never felt more different, we must find a way to stitch ourselves back together to give us a chance to become stronger.
Love conquers hate.
Evil is evil regardless of the mask it hides behind.