You would have to have ice running through your veins not to have been touched and appalled by the senseless deaths that took place in the city last Friday. Lives were lost and others changed forever by the actions of one man, and that is the very definition of tragic.
The images were confronting and heart-breaking, and the fact it was happening in our city made it even worse. The reaction on social media was instant and predictable, but I found it disturbing. I can understand the need to express grief and anger about such circumstances, that is perfectly natural, but the lynch mob mentality of many of the postings was over the top.
I am sure that venting your feelings in the manner some people did is a very unhealthy thing. I am sure it would be more beneficial to talk to someone face-to-face about your feelings, because let’s face it, you can’t hug a keyboard. I know sometimes people will write an angry response to something but not post or send it immediately. It is very easy from the safety of a keyboard to question the actions of the police, to make judgements, and be the judge and jury. Truth is, nothing on an internet post will change what happened. While it may give the author instant gratification, the pain and suffering of the victims and their loved ones lingers.
An investigation will take place and the findings will be released, there will be a trial. The trial and the investigation will be very hard for those directly involved and for their families and friends, and also for the people of Melbourne. I hope it does not become another excuse to let fly from the sanctuary of the keyboard for those who feel the need. All our energies would be best directed in a positive way, rather than seeking revenge or retribution, an exercise that is painful and pointless.
I received some interesting feedback on last week’s column about the return to school and the need to make it more ‘life’ friendly. A few felt I was demeaning academia, others thought it was relevant. Balance here is the key, in my opinion.
If you have any news or events, let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org