Monday, 16 November 2015

There Are No Words... describe what most people must have felt when the news broke of Friday's atrocity in Paris. Angry, or distraught, or frightened, or belligerent, or heartbroken; they all seem terribly inadequate somehow.

The outpouring of grief and support for the French has been striking: flags at half-mast; candle-lit vigils, buildings bathed in the tricolour. And the latter has been echoed on many profile pictures on Facebook. As I pressed the button to turn my own picture red, white and blue, I thought to myself "there's absolutely no practical point in doing this - but how can I not?"

A tragedy close to home always hurts more, feels more personal, but we have to remember this is not the only violent loss of life recently. In addition to the 129 killed in the attacks in Paris, there were:

224 killed when a plane travelling from Sharm El-Sheikh to Russia was brought down in Sinai; 43 killed in suicide bombings in Beirut. The list goes on - and that is only this month.

Every November, we wear the poppy to remind ourselves of the sacrifices made by others to protect our way of life, our security, our freedoms. We tell ourselves we must not let it happen again. And yet...

I do not know what the answer is. 

To say that we should all be able to live in peace on this planet of ours, respecting each others' beliefs, is seen as naive in the extreme. 

And maybe that's part of the problem.


  1. Such an important message, Elizabeth...and you have managed to get it across beautifully, sensitively. I don't know what the answer is either...I wish I did. Prayer sometimes (especially in the face of such horror) feels so insignificant..and yet it's all I can do, so I continue to do it.
    Thank you for sharing. Peace be with you, Kimmie.

    1. Thank you Kimmie. I was tempted to rail against our so-called leaders whose only response to violence is more violence - but I thought I'd leave that for another time. E x