|The Next Day
||[Jul. 8th, 2005|09:32 am]
My greatest fear is that yesterday's atrocity will change us. That we'll become cowed, suspicious, fearful, chauvinistic, nasty. That, as a direct result, we'll be more ready to allow government to herd us and spy on us and take away our liberties. If these things happen it'll be a victory for the bombers.|
The chortling comminique that went up on the net yesterday, purportedly from the bombers, proclaimed (in that curious Arabian Nights lingo these people use) "Behold Britain now, ablaze with fear and terror, horrified from its north to its south, from its east to its west." This isn't my perception of how the people of Britain have reacted. What I feel in myself is rather the opposite, not a quickening, but a slowing down of the pulse, a sadness and a heaviness, a weary resignation. "Oh, not again."
Before this lot there was the IRA and before the IRA there was the Luftwaffe and before the Luftwaffe there were the Anarchist and Bolshevik and Fenian cells that put the wind up the Edwardians and late Victorians. We've been living with bombers for almost as long as there've been modern cities. Read Conrad's Secret Agent, published in 1907 (which fictionalises a real life incident where an half-arsed attempt was made to blow up the Royal Observatory at Greenwich) and it's all there- right down to the loony with explosives strapped to his chest and a switch in his pocket. The ideology changes but the methods and the mindset remain the same.
Two days ago London was on a high because of the Olympics. Last weekend London's Hyde Park was the central venue for the international festival of good will and hard rocking that was Live 8. It looked like it was going to be a good year. And now, suddenly, we've been knocked sideways. Well, a period of mourning is appropriate, but after that we need to recover our groove, our vibe, our mojo. It's not right that a tiny gang of godbothering psychos should dictate the mood of the nation.
Good grief- let's hope not- I would hate to see the UK in the same sad way as the US. Let me tell you, I live in the middle of a cowed, suspicious, fearful, chauvinistic, nasty country with a particularly wicked leader, and it is no fun at all. And the 'godbotherers' are taking advantage of it to try to reverse our Constitution and turn our Republic into a theocracy.
Gosh, what country do you live in? I live in the United States.
With respect, I think you've been listening to the screeching folks of both extremes.
I live in the US also. And the dark turn of events since 9/11 and the way that this 'war on terror' has been wielded like a bludgeon to take our rights and liberties away with the "Patriot Act" is criminal. People aren't getting the bigger picture. And that bothers me.
2005-07-08 08:14 am (UTC)
It's probably not appropriate to turn Poliphilo's journal entry into a referendum on U.S. politics -- there are plenty of places where reasonable people and barking moonbats alike can get together for a lively exchange of views. I will create a short posting on my own LiveJournal if you want to comment there.
True, and I apologize. I really admire the British pluck and compassion- I had a taste of it twice- once when I was in the middle of a multi-car pileup outside of Ipswich, and again when I visited Lockerbie, Scotland. They're wonderful people, and I really feel for those in London who went through that mess. Congratulations on the Olympics, too.
My fault as much as yours, although I like to make sure opposing points of view are heard. When the choir sings to itself, to strain a metaphor, there's a risk that they'll go sharper and sharper, or flatter and flatter.
I read somewhere that the pubs were mobbed last night in a demonstration of matter-of-fact British defiance. Good on them!
Ooops, didn't see I was anonymous here. Very sorry... I'm usually logged in till Doomsday, don't know how that happened!