I am NOT a political animal, this is NOT a political blog.
Were I to attempt to delve too deeply into either politics or religion then my ignorance would very soon be clear and I would not only be opening myself up to (justifiable) criticism but I would almost certainly (and unintentionally) insult those far more informed than myself.
For those reasons I tend to steer well clear of both these subjects.
That doesn't mean I don't have views, it doesn't mean I don't care, it doesn't mean I don't have opinions.
The whole world is aware of the atrocities carried out in Paris last week.
An act of war carried out in the name of religion.
The massacre of innocent people. People who were unable to even attempt to defend themselves. People, who maybe just like me, had only a limited understanding of why this happened.
My heart goes out to those people.
I am shocked, horrified, angry and bewildered.
I am also a little disturbed by some of the reactions I've seen on Facebook to these attacks.
THIS shocks, horrifies and bewilders me:
|posted along with the caption: 'I had the balls to re post this - do YOU?'|
This shows a level or ignorance far beyond my own. This shows a level of hatred I can begin to comprehend.
This person is no longer on my friends list.
Yesterday I saw this:
|I found this rather offensive too|
I don't necessarily agree with these posts either although for different reasons but I understand that they are a reaction to something that has shaken people to the very core.
This suggests that only people who have served their country in the military have a right to feel this way.
This is untrue, patronising and (in my opinion). elitist
This isn't a totally ignorant view point.
People very close to me have fought and been injured at war in the Falklands and in Afghanistan.
I may not have first hand experience of war but I do have very close second hand experience of the fall out from it.
Another post suggested that anyone who had turned their profile picture red, white and blue to show solidarity and support for France. To show that they too were mourning along side the family and friends of those who died were somehow ignoring the fact that people in other countries have suffered in similar ways. This person went on to say that they would not be changing their profile picture and basically anyone who did was just jumping on the bandwagon because it was politically correct.
I couldn't find the actual post but it was something similar to this:
"I feel that just changing my photo, writing a few words and a hashtag on social media minimises (even cheapens) the tremendous, horrific reality of what is going on all around the world, not just in Paris. From suffering arises another trendy social media gimmick, another way for us to show the world how “clued in” and “with it” we are."
For the record. I HAVE updated my profile photo because for me it felt like the right thing to do.
Also for the record.
I DO NOT judge anyone who has chosen not to. I don't think (that for the majority) it means they don't care. I don't think they are being disrespectful to others. I don't think it means that they are ignorant or have forgotten that things like this are happening all over the world. I think we all express how we feel in different ways and we all have a right to do that.
For me it's my personal way of showing my respect for anyone who has died at the hands of radicals - ANY radicals in ANY part of the world.
By spreading the message of peace, love and solidarity we are doing something positive. It is very small in it's own way but surly it's better than lethargically standing back in an intellectual air of superiority?
I don't have solutions only many questions.
I do have view points which some may not agree with.
My intention isn't to offend anyone with this post.
If you have or agree with the posting of the first picture then YOU have offended ME and I am not interested in your opinion because we have no common ground.
If you have or agree with the second picture for the reasons that it was posted then I think you are slightly misguided. While the military provide a valuable role and I have the utmost respect for those who choose this path please do not insult those who choose a different one. Our value is in combining our strengths.
If you choose not to change your profile photo on FB then you have no need to answer to me, I am not judging you.
I'm not being flipant with my title when I say life is too short.
LIFE REALLY IS TOO SHORT!
If the attacks in Paris haven't taught us anything else then surly they have taught us that?