Friday, 27 February 2009

United we stand

Like many others who heard the news earlier this week, I was very moved by what I saw on TV of the response to young Ivan Cameron's untimely death. The death of a young child is especially moving; I'm sure there is something instinctive in all of us that motivates us to look after and protect our young and vulnerable. In addition to being moved by the death of Ivan, I was also moved by the way in which all the political players united to share their grief and extend condolences to the Cameron family.

Politics often strikes me as an unpleasant, ruthless world where friendship or even cooperation is rarely in evidence across political divides. Why should this be? Does our country run more efficiently when the decision makers attack rivals at every turn? (Should any of our pupils behave at a school assembly or a classroom as we see elected members behaving in the commons, they would have no place in mainstream education!)

Across the Atlantic, Barack Obama has shown us that you don't need to attack your opponents all of the time to win an election. With the exception of some less than flattering words that were aimed in Sarah Palin's direction, I can not recall an unkind word being attributed to President Obama in the long running election campaign. Why cannot our politicians work together for the benefit of the electorate to get us through the current downturn in the economy? Surely, by having all the political parties working together, scores of families and hard working people might be spared the pain and suffering that comes with unemployment and losing homes. In difficult times such as these we need statesmen to emerge, politics is not for now.

''A politician looks forward only to the next election. A statesman looks forward to the next generation.''(Thomas Jefferson)

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