Over the past two years or so  hundreds of thousands of people have been struck down by a truly terrible condition. Although many different  cities throughout the western world have been affected, the symptoms are unmistakable, quite disturbing, and for which governments are at a loss as to how best to solve.

In fact you may have been affected yourself, or know somebody that has succumbed to it. Once it takes hold it is not difficult to recognise. The first manifestation of the condition involves large crowds of hundreds, and sometimes thousands of strangers standing together at a predetermined spot. None of these strangers know the others, but nonetheless are happy to be in each other’s company. The next manifestation is the sight of hundreds of candles. Now these may be hand held, or placed around in a pattern, glowing with enough heat to melt the heart of any cynic. This is usually proceeded by flowers, bunches upon bunches of them, and quite often just a singular flower placed delicately upon the ground. Before much longer the strangers hold hands, and begin to cry. They become very emotional, disturbed, and overwhelmed with emotion.

Personally, due to my determination to avoid infection, I avoid vigils at all costs. These candle-lit, laser light shows, accompanied by tons of wet tissues, and flags flown at half-mast that inevitably follow each gruesome, evil act by or in support of whatever it was this time. But the overriding reason to avoid them is down to the fact that emotional expression seems to be their main function which is not only exasperating, but a bit alarming.
But the more you study the pointless vigil the more it looks very much like the people who feel most compelled to participate in these rituals don’t actually get that the horror is real. If they did their first and main aim would be to stop it from happening again, right? But there’s little or none of that. You just get a farrago of sanctimony and virtue signalling. In the recent Las Vegas massacre the vigil illness appeared very quickly yet it never occurred to the sufferers to march on Capitol Hill to demand a referendum to abolish the second amendment?  I remember soon after the Pulse Nightclub massacre story broke, the various, and usual wishy-washy hashtags started to trend. #WeStandWithOrlando? No they don’t. #LoveWins? No it doesn’t. #StopTheHate! Well, I wish them good luck with that one. On and on they go, invariable composed by the usual social media dimwits.

And all the while the most sanctimonious sentence in the English language is offered up like the eleventh commandment  “God bless America’’ Shouldn’t this actually now read ‘God help America’ A country where you buy a gun as easily as a cigarette, but a place where ‘Balls’ never grow because not a single President has shown enough of a pair to stand up to the gun tooting, death merchants of the National Rifle Association. Trump, the man to make ‘America Great Again’ is just another President awash with self-delusion. House Speaker Paul Ryan responded to the horror in Las Vegas by saying that “what truly defines us” are the acts of heroism we learned of, while the shooting itself “is not who we are.” This is the kind of verbal diaherra for which you’d love somebody to find a tablet. Las Vegas, outside of 9/11 is currently the worst, but is hardly the first, and most definitely won’t be the last. And the victims, their families and the American public should demand a lot more than the gauzy pieties and press-a-button platitudes that follow each new atrocity.

Unfortunately, despite the streets being awash with the blood of innocent victims, there are those who insist that any gun restrictions wouldn’t lessen the dying, and which has sadly become an excuse for not at least giving it a try. But as these fools speak, the stakes couldn’t be higher, the sirens couldn’t be louder, and each new marker surpasses the last. God bless America?……He’s not listening!

Laters

8th October 2017