Ariana Grande, a petite lady, with a great name , said a good thing:"Broken. No words." How can words do justice to that which actions have done such harm with?
The bombing of a pop concert where young people , young enough to have many among them who are children, has shocked and revolted us. Those of us in cities in the UK feel it as a matter of a loss of safety, and a negation of humanity. It is the opposite of everything we in the democratic world hold dear, and decent people in any kind of country.
There is going to be a time for asking questions, but now is not the time to even attempt to answer them.
Some are already rushing to judgement.
From the right it is all a result of our being soft, of immigrants above all, of refugees only, of religons alien to us , of what we tolerate too much.
From the left it is partly our fault, our fault means that of the west , it is what we did wrong, we do it yet, it is our foreign policy , and it is government cuts in police numbers at home.
As ever there is truth to be seen in both , and much that is true that is missing.
The people of our country, my country, are having none of it, are not in the mood for it now.
In Manchester , fans of football or not , well know that their team is one of their most successful cultural achievements , and an export throughout the world. But Manchester United is more than a football team now. It could be the description of the state of a city, the sharing of a nation, the sympathy of this world
."Love for all, hate for none, " was written on banners in Albert Square , in Manchester, this week in the vigil to express the feeling of solidarity. How can we but not hate , yet how can we defeat hate if we are consumed by it ?We could hate the hateful , and love those who are loveable , and at least move forward thus.
And in walked one much loved, calmly, graciously, warmly. At times like this the sight of the ninety one year old monarch , Queen Elizabeth 11, reveals why questions about the validity of heredity , as a principle , of monarchy, are so much nonsense. No politician, loathed by some , liked by many, could capture the mood or contain the feeling , in as measured, as dignified, as treasured a way, as the Queen did visiting the extraordinary victims and staff, in the hospital in Manchester , she met, this week.
Others prefer to make a lot of noise, continue as ever, but as loud as they often are.
Piers Morgan, one time journalist and newspaper editor, turned television host and presenter, failed , if ratings are the judge , and in America they are, as the presenter of the US media slot that was once the preserve of the popular Larry King. But he made millions so he did not mind. He swiftly got back to the UK television he is frequent host on. A man popular with few , but perhaps able , he is now puffed up and this week, puffed out ! Seeing, and tweeting about, the visit of Her Majesty in Manchester, the preposterous Mr. Piers Morgan, thought it might be appropriate , or didn't think about it at all, probably, to have a pot shot at Ariana Grande. He tweeted , it should, in his view , have been the thing to do , for the singer who the victims had been in Manchester to see, it is she , he said , who should be there yet, in that city , and she who should be visiting them. And being a media personality who wouldn't know reticence if it meant permanent silence, he more or less insulted the young singer by insinuation ! The tweeting public, the Twittersphere, and any of us who do not tweet, are having , absolutely none of it this time! For the word is out that Ariana Grande is distraught, aswell any should believe , but that her own life was in danger, is not the issue, though it was, or that her own mother at the concert helped kids to safety is not the emphasis, though she did, the fact is , we hear, and well understand, that a singer who brings joy to fans , knows twenty two are dead, aswell as over a hundred now with injuries, and she is alive and well aware of it. The word is out , and yes we understand this so very much, that she needs to be with family, partner, loved ones. That we get, and yet , we hear, she is to pay for the funerals, wants to talk with the victims, is in hysterics ,or silent intermitently.
She said it . Broken. No words.