By now I’m sure there will be very few people in the Western World, and out into those parts of the world that show Western News, which aren’t aware of today’s happenings in Belgium. Bombs at an airport and metro station, innocent people killed indiscriminately, many more injured.
It’s becoming a familiar theme now, though some would argue that in their part of the world it’s been familiar for years. If you think about Basque separatists ETA, the IRA, Bader Meinhoff and the rest, there have been spells where terrorist attacks have shaken different cities, countries, governments – people – and then things have changed and peace has returned.
Naturally, I’m horrified at the day’s events in Brussels: they’re shocking and appalling. I’m also saddened by some of the (all too) predictable rhetoric that has appeared in the news media and on social media. Almost as soon as the first bomb went off there were calls from some people looking to apportion blame and / or to ban others according to their religion. That knee jerk reaction without knowing all the facts reveals hatred and bigotry, and also a measure of fear and distrust.
We know that there are good and bad in every race, in every religion, in every community. Tarring everyone by the same brush based on the acts of a radicalised few leads to more distrust, more fear, more radicalisation. It’s not going to solve anything. Only by standing together, irrespective of race, religion, colour, creed or caste, can we truly fight and overcome those who are trying to disrupt and even end our way of life. Use your heads, not your fists: don’t listen to the inevitable hate speech which will be bandied about by those with far right wing tendencies, or those who will no doubt leap on this as a reason to stem immigration.
My thoughts are with those who have lost loved ones today. A dark day indeed.