I was intending my first post in a while – and the first for 2015 – to be something suitably uplifting and inspirational, as is befitting a new year. Sadly, it’s not to be. I’m on a beautiful, remote island in Thailand and was feeling refreshed and positive about the months ahead – until yesterday, when I checked twitter, (on behalf of a client – I wouldn’t’ve bothered if it was for me, to be honest..), and I saw the breaking news of the horrendous shooting at the Charlie Hebdo offices in Paris. Journalists, gunned down in cold blood while at work because people don’t like what they write or the satirical cartoons that they draw. (And it’s important to note that Charlie Hebdo magazine doesn’t just ridicule Muslims, it laughs at everyone – from English people, to the Pope.) So far, the death toll stands at nine journalists and two police officers.
Quite rightly, #JeSuisCharlie is now trending.
I’m a member of the NUJ and I’m proud to say that at 12pm today, French time, UK journalists observed a minute’s silence in honour of their fallen French comrades and in defiance of the pure evil behind these murders. Some held ‘Je Suis Charlie’ signs, others held pencils and pens.
I might be on the other side of the world, previously daydreaming of how things will be in 2015 but, unfortunately, this has jolted me back to the reality of life. A sad reminder of the people who use religion as an excuse to murder.