It doesn’t have to be this way

Editor: We are putting this out on #WorldMentalHealthDay because we feel that this short piece from the heart sums up what so many people are feeling right now. There has to be a better way and we have to do more than hope. We must be the change. We shared a tweet last week that said: ‘Do not wait for the outcome. Create the outcome.’ It’s up to us. It really is. We need to help and support each other. We’re all we’ve got.

On what should’ve been one of the happiest days I have experienced, I woke up today with a crushing sense of despair. Yesterday, my daughter sent me a short video from the scan of her first baby, and my first grandchild.  Just 10 weeks old, the miracle of creation touched me emotionally in so many ways.  I was filled with awe, joy and love, and tears just coursed down my cheeks.  I can’t remember the last time that my whole body seemed filled with happiness. 

By the morning, different emotions were running riot.

The first thing I read when I studied the news this morning was an article about HS2, accompanied with pictures of a landscape destroyed. Trees that had taken hundreds of years to grow just chopped down in a few days.  When our planet is overheating and we desperately need more trees, the obvious stupidity of this sent the first arrow into my heart.

I was later astonished to learn that one could pre-order a coin from the White House gift shop which commemorates the fact that “Trump survived Covid 19”.  What madness is that?  When I think of the damage that politicians, who are meant to work for us, have wreaked upon our countries in return for their own personal gains, I could go mad.  Completely insane. How has it come to pass that Trump was elected president of the United States of America, and Johnson elected Prime Minister of Britain?

We have sat by and watched whilst Cummings has taken control of the government, with Boris Johnson used as a front man. These men are not even trying to hide the fact that they are destroying our democracy. They are openly giving billions of pounds to their friends for jobs they are not doing, and have put rude, incompetent stooges like Matt Hancock and Priti Patel into positions they could not ordinarily earn.  They have shown a callous disregard for the lives of our elders, for the poor and the needy and they are systematically taking control of every aspect of our lives, including the media and the law.

What upsets me the most is our complacency.  We should be demanding the resignation of these dishonest, evil men and we should be outraged by their behaviour.  The fact that we are not is the thing that distresses me the most. Are we, all of us, now so stupidly dull ourselves that we are not shocked into action?   Don’t we care about ethics, morality and justice? 

As an everyday person, with an ordinary life in my community, I want us to fight for decency. I want us to fight to save the planet. I want us to fight for common sense. I want to be proud of my neighbours and my countrymen and, at the moment, I am ashamed to be English.

My daughter is going to experience the most wonderful miracle that is the creation of a new life. I want her child to be born into a beautiful natural world which feels safe.  Somewhere with kind people, good values and equality.  She can have that if we fight for what we know is right,

We can stop killing our planet right now.

We can share wealth.

We can cut out the corruption in the heart of government.

We can change our future, or we can just buy a crappy coin and wait to die.