Sticks and stones

I wouldn’t normally sit down and read a Katie Hopkins column, but the photo of her bleeding face in the Daily Mail made me question what had happened, how it had happened and her point…

I didn’t get to the cause of her injury, but I did enjoy reading her views for once. She celebrated how locals helped her when she was in need. Somehow she ended up with bloody face and in the need of medical attention – which she got – along with the kindness of the people around her. Her article was extremely complimentary to those who helped her and it allowed Hopkins to regain faith in humanity after recent events in Paris. I have news for you Hopkins, for those you find that will help, there are many that would have watched you bleed.

In the days when Hopkins restored faith in the people around her, I lost mine.

I was walking home from a pleasant evening catching up with old friends when, from one corner of the high street I hear, “Oi mate, ‘ave you got a light?” To which I respond with a simple ‘no’ and continued walking. Clearly that wasn’t the response that the late-night tracksuit-wearing (for the lack of a better word) ‘chav’ wanted to hear. It wasn’t an aggressive ‘no’, I simply didn’t have a lighter.

Moments after, I assume it was his ‘mate’ that was walking towards me wearing a bloody hoodie and a noticeable limp that took up the majority of the pavement. “Watch out mate, avoid the batty boy.” Unfortunately, this isn’t a rare comment to receive and usually in this situation I would keep my head down, keep myself to myself,  walk on and remember that sticks and stones can break my bones, but words can never hurt me. But I have had just about enough of people’s bigoted views and reckless comments. It angered me that he was probably just looking for a fight at the end of the night and decided to pick on someone he thought would be an easy target. Not this time,  I decided to take a different approach.

“Excuse me?” I turned around and the words came flooding out of my mouth without a thought. “Who do you think you are? You don’t know me.”

“Come here, I will cut your head off batty boy!” It is comments like that that make me feel this way. Have we not learnt anything? That was the lowest I have felt in some time. Which human being thinks it is appropriate to propose such a violent threat just seven days after Paris suffered the worst killing spree since WW2? Which human being thinks that it is acceptable to use someone’s fear against them? Forgive me – it’s not reckless – it’s calculated and offensive. I know it sounds controversial, and I am not one for sharing these thoughts often, but to me terrorism isn’t a religion, nor is it an organisation. For me it doesn’t have to have a political agenda, terrorism is using someone’s fear against them to disturb others lifestyle. I’m sorry but for me, terrorism is on our streets as well as on our TV screens, in our papers and and on our tablet devices. With comments like that, people live in fear. I am fed up of reading the news where ignominious acts are at the centre of the majority of headlines.

Only a few months ago I was reading about a man in the same town who was beaten up so badly that ended up in a critical condition fighting for his life. He was too just walking home at the end of the night. I have had enough of it. It’s dramatic for me to write this, but we are living in pretty dramatic times, where too many bad things happen to good people, and for what? I can’t answer that I’m afraid, I’ve tried and failed!

I decided to walk away with tears of frustration, anger and sadness streaming down my face.

And yet, as I write this, news floods into my inbox that the-so-called Islamic State is telling British fanatics to ‘stay hidden’ in the UK and to wait until they get a signal to attack. What kind of world do we live in? You tell me.

Hopkins, there may be good in the world, but there is also cruelty. Don’t worry though, my glass will remain half full after clicking the ‘publish’ button.

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