I’m sure the words of an insignificant blogger will mean very little in the context of such tragedy, but I felt I couldn’t write anything today without first expressing my most sincere sympathy for the victims of the attack in Manchester, an abhorrent, inhuman act that has made orphans of children and taken children from parents. A defining trait of being British is one’s resolve and determination in the face of overwhelming sorrow and adversity, and I have no doubt that Manchester will display those qualities as its citizens continue their lives in the wake of this horror. We have already seen the best of humanity in the efforts of the emergency services at the scene, and in the local people offering help in the form of shelter, food, water and other kinds of support. This is what we need to focus on after such an event, rather than letting fear drive us to blind retaliation.
The way we beat terrorism is by showing them that we are undaunted by their pathetic, sickening gestures; we must mourn, but we must also be strong, clear, and informed. Social media is awash with messages of hope and support, but there is also a disturbing amount of irrational misinformation and attempts to project an agenda onto last night’s events. An act of terror is a deliberate attempt to stir panic and brew conflict, and to succumb to hate and vengeance is to give the perpetrators exactly what they want.
My heart goes out to anyone affected by the tragedy. Manchester will prevail after last night, and will not let itself be torn apart. Let’s be heartened by the positive responses to such unfathomable hatred, rather than giving in to fear.