News of the murder of Conservative MP, Sir David Amess, 69, was utterly shocking and incomprehensible. A stalwart of the party, the senior MP seemed to be one of the few who genuinely carried out his work with gusto and cared about his Essex constituents. I must admit to being one of the most cynical creatures when it comes to politicians. Why go into politics? Potential world domination, to make a pile or to satisfy an unquenchable ego, or all three, duh.
However, in the case of Sir David, none of those thoughts crossed my mind. It was evident that he was one in a million: an honourable politician who really loved his work, diligently supported the community in which he lived and strove every day to make a difference. He loved his wife and five children and was a happy and radiant man, making the most of each day of life. As they say, it’s the good ones that are taken away while the rotten fruit doggedly hangs on the tree.
While, the country reeled in horror and the bereaved family of Sir David valiantly tried to come to terms with such a violent and aggressive killing, polemic began about how politicians could be protected from such barbary. The problem is that as part of a democratic society, it is expected that constituents meet their local MPs in the regular surgeries to have problems solved or mooted. What is to be done?
It is chilling to imagine how a 25 -year-old young Somalian male plotted and planned the murder of a veteran politician who had done so much for refugees and the local Muslim population. Ali Harbi Ali was not a radicalised down and out or young man from a hideous background with an axe to grind. No, Ali came from a relatively affluent Somali family living in London, and his father was a communications adviser to the Somalian president.
What could possibly have gone wrong? The tragedy is that anyone can be radicalised especially when they are at their weakest point. It is likely that during lockdown in Britain, a potentially mentally-unhinged Ali was lured to nefarious crimes by terrorist extremists. The shock for his family must have been so acute and they must now be mourning the son they once knew, now turned monster psychotic killer. How does a parent ever cope with that?
Whatever happens from here, it’s obvious that things have to change. Labour MP, Jo Cox, was viciously killed on her way to a constituency meeting in 2016 by a right-wing extremist and Sir David’s murder marks the tenth occasion when MPs have become targets for attacks. Armed police presence is now necessary and should be urgently enforced. What a sad world we live in but needs must, and fast.
Tin foil hats, anyone?
You’ve got to laugh. As the UK continues to melt away faster than a pat of butter, the latest news is that due to aluminium shortages, pie foil tins are now in short supply. Manufacturers and retailers of popular steak and kidney pud, Cornish pastries and pork pies and other appealing, sophisticated British fare (I’m choking on irony here) are now desperately short of containers for regular deliveries.
All the same, as there’s no petrol in the UK and no one to make or deliver the pies, maybe the manufacturers should just throw in the towel, stuff down the ingredients themselves and drown their sorrows in some potent ale?
According to research undertaken by the Office for National Statistics, Britons are at their lowest level of wellbeing in a decade. In fact, the ONS asserts that Britons have never been more miserable and that anxiety has soared.
There’s nothing like pointing out the bleeding obvious is there? There’s nowt to eat in supermarkets, no transport, pork pies or pasties and Christmas is promising to be a washout with no presents or turkeys. Oh, and if that wasn’t bad enough, Covid cases have soared in three months to 45,000 cases and flu and bad weather are on the way. Reasons to be cheerful? I think not.
Shaken not stirred
If it’s true that HRH The Queen, has been advised to stop drinking her favourite tipples to keep healthy during her arduous Autumn schedule, I can only say that her Royal physicians are a thoroughly miserable bunch. The monarch is 95 years old, has recently lost her husband, has a dog-end crisis of a country to oversee, and a winter of discontent looming. If she can’t enjoy the odd Martini Dry (my cocktail of choice too, ma’am) when the heck can she? If I were The Queen I’d tell them what they could do with their advice, and I’d use a sharp cocktail stick with a bitter green olive aloft, to make my point.
What good news it was to hear that those residing in the rest of Spain could now enter the Baleares without intrusive locator forms and proof of Covid vaccines or tests. It’s time to kick this bureaucracy and scare-mongering into touch and get back to life. Yes, there will be illnesses and deaths and no, Covid will not magically disappear but we must get a grip and get on with life before it passes us all by.
As we know, the only thing to fear is fear itself. Governments the world over have done their utmost to paralyse and immobilise the population – and economy - through unadulterated fear and threats. Now it’s time to show our mettle and resolve and to say in no uncertain terms, that enough is enough!
Anna Nicholas’s seventh Mallorca travel title, Peacocks in Paradise, is now available to purchase at all good UK bookshops & via amazon. In Mallorca it’s available at Universal Bookshop, Alameda shop in Soller and the Atelier in Fornalutx and in Palma bookshops.