There is so much sadness. In the news and closer to home. When the news from Norway hit on Friday I was in disbelief. A bomb? A mass murderer killing innocent teens on an island? A nightmare that had me checking my Twitter feed every couple of minutes. Maybe it was a hoax? Surely not 80 people dead, surely not? A peace-loving, (in my head) idyllic, modern Scandinavian country in the grips of a hateful, spiteful lunatic. One person causing so much pain and suffering to so many others. It was hard to believe but I had to.
It makes me worry, it really does. Right-wing extremist views have gotten more and more foothold in Europe over the last couple of years. Anti-multiculturalism, anti-Islamic and overly nationalistic political views have seemingly gotten more mainstream, somehow more acceptable. Historically speaking, I think it is a symptom of the global recession. Think back to continental Europe in the 1930's. Recession, unemployment, general feeling of malaise. One man placed the blame on the Jewish people. Stealing "our" jobs, forcing "their" culture, "their" way of life on "us". "They're" different to "us", "they" should be gotten rid of. Sound familiar? We all know how that panned out.
I was reading this piece on both Finnish and English news and I cried when I could only scarcely imagine the horror. The girl, 16 years of age, sending text messages to her mother who is following the news, pleading her daughter to send her a sign of life every five minutes. Horrific.
I've stopped following the story in the news now. It's getting out of hand, and I have had enough. I read the story about the couple who rescued tens of those trapped on the island, risking their own lives in the process, by going back and over the water on their boat. That was where I wanted to stop. A little ray of positivity to restore my faith in humankind. I have no interest in what the media will dig out next. I agree wholeheartedly with Charlie Brooker; the shooter does not deserve this publicity he so clearly was after.