Everywhere we see the colours of the French flag. I find that my sympathy is not just for those impacted by the attacks in Paris on Friday night but for all innocent victims. My fear is that this incident will provoke intransigence, divisiveness and ever more violence.
I find I can’t ignore visions of the thousands of people walking in a migration of biblical proportions across Europe. Thousands of individuals walking away from war zones towards what they hope is a place of peace.
What about these people? Do they walk alone? Is our humanity deep and pure enough to reach out to all those deeply suffering in the aftermath of extreme violence or only to some?
I weep for France. I weep also for the fears we all have to face now, for freedoms lost. There has to be something in our response that is complete and true, otherwise it is mere posturing. We cannot support some innocent people and turn our backs on others. Not if we have any integrity within us.
Surely integrity is what defines goodness. Without goodness are we not inhuman? We must protect humanity by starting with our own personal integrity.
Think of Mahatma Ghandi, think of Martin Luther King, think of Nelson Mandela. The great change brought about by these great men is where we must find our guidance and inspiration. The more we bomb, the more we support tyrannical regimes and sell them arms, the more we create the seedbed from which terrorism grows.