I write this just a few hours into the aftermath of the horrific bombing in Manchester. The British character is to be generous and tolerant. This was apparent in Manchester as local people rushed to help survivors and opened their homes to provide shelter to shocked and scared families.
I have to admit that my overriding emotion at this moment is anger. What kind of ideology makes someone want to kill an 8 year old child at a concert? Certainly not Islam. It is evil. Nothing else. As the Prime Minister put it, “We struggle to comprehend the warped and twisted mind that sees a room packed with young children not as a scene to cherish, but as an opportunity for carnage.”
As I write this our security service and other intelligence services, the best in the world, will be working hand-in-glove with the Police. I have every confidence that this horror will be properly investigated and if any others are involved they will be caught.
But what can we do? Firstly, we can hug our children. In doing so we can think of those who now no longer can. We must tell our children that most people are good. Tell them we live in one of the safest countries in the world. That those that do this are a tiny minuscule minority.
The future? Plenty of time to discuss that. For now: prayers for the dead and injured and a laser-beam focus on holding fast to our British values – whatever our political persuasion. That is the way to defeat the low-life who murder children. Who look at a scene of joy and create carnage.