It is this, this humanity that makes me retain hope.

Last week, the love of my life, LOML, and I were watching a television programme about the Lockerbie disaster.  Thirty years ago, on 21 December, 1998, Pan Am Flight 103 was blown out of the sky killing 270 people, (243 passengers, 16 crew, 11 on the ground.)  As was said in the programme, it was the largest number of people killed in a terrorist incident ever experienced by the UK.  

Now, this blog is not about who did this or who did that, (there’s still debate as to who was responsible), no, this is about the people of Lockerbie and what they did.  How they opened their doors and hearts to those affected by this dreadful incident.  

The programme had softly spoken people talking about what had happened, what they had seen.  All said in an understated way that made what they were saying even more powerful.  No emotion apart from some once or twice having to stop talking as grief washed over them yet again.  You could sense their anguish and regret.  

The people of Lockerbie went further.  Once there was no further need for the clothing found scattered around the countryside to be retained for forensic purposes, everything was washed, ironed, packaged, and sent to those still grieving relatives.  It was all about respect and compassion.  

It is this, this humanity that makes me retain hope.  

Then there were the people who queued for hours to donate blood after the attack on the Twin Towers, September 11, 2001.  Their wish to show they cared, were involved.  

It is this, this humanity that makes me retain hope.  

The reaction of people after the two bomb attacks in London.  How people risked their own lives to save others.

It is this, this humanity that makes me retain hope.  

The response of those in London in 2017 doing their best to save lives, even if it meant risk to themselves, when a van deliberately drove onto the pavement, killing and maiming people.

It is this, this humanity that makes me retain hope.  

There are so many other examples since that dreadful event on 21 December, 1998.  Where people have given their own lives to save others.  Where people have done so without thought of their own survival.  Many have died unsung.  Unknown.  

It is their humanity, and those of us who care, that makes me retain hope in these troubling times.  

We must never, never, ever, allow those who wish to capitalise on our differences, (race, gender, belief systems, colour, whatever), for their own purposes to succeed.  We must needs see through the lies and fabrications used on those two irresponsible, immoral and shameless publishers, Twitter and Facebook, for what they are.  A mechanism for control.  A mechanism for creation of hate and discord.  We must needs see through all of this misdirection to the humanity that connects us all.  

Once we have done that, then my belief in the humanity of those around us will no longer just be a hope, it will be a reality.  

Continuing to show, to share, our common humanity is my (retained) hope for 2019 for you and yours.  

J J Mitchell

‘Never leave anyone behind’ 

6 thoughts on “It is this, this humanity that makes me retain hope.

  • 23rd December 2018 at 10:46 am
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    As usual JJ you have captured a powerful feeling in English. Thank you for sharing.

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    • 23rd December 2018 at 12:42 pm
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      Generous and gracious as always, Bryan, thank you.

      Reply
  • 23rd December 2018 at 11:29 am
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    My belief is that the people of Lockerbie and their like worldwide are in the majority – we just don’t hear about them until some dreadful event happens.

    It was a privilege so see their quiet dignity and resilience in the face of such horror.

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    • 23rd December 2018 at 12:45 pm
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      You’re quite right, they are in the majority, always have been. It’s just that the ‘normal’ decency we experience every day doesn’t make the news or sell newspapers.

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  • 28th December 2018 at 12:27 pm
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    I, too, like to think that there are many, many random acts of kindness occurring every day. We tend not to hear of them so it’s all too easy to believe that our world is populated by people who wish to cause harm or distress. Sadly, as you point out, social media makes it all too easy as does the freedom under which we live. It’s uplifting and necessary to remain optimistic about our future and to carry out our own acts of kindness!

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    • 28th December 2018 at 12:36 pm
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      Perfect, I couldn’t have put it better. Thank you, Sue.

      Reply

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