The Westminster terrorist can’t win if we carry on regardless
The man who killed and maimed in Westminster yesterday has not been named by the authorities yet. The British born killer’s actions were those of a coward.
Much of the talk is of not letting the terrorists win. It can sound trite and easy. But it’s spot on. But the way we go about achieving it differs.
All day the TV has been broadcasting pictures from Westminster. Things look wonderfully normal. Westminster Bridge is open to traffic and walkers again. Tourists with selfie sticks are snapping away. A man is stood on the crossing, not waiting for the ‘green man’ to flash, but dashing between vehicles. Lots of people are talking to one another.
There is no sense of fear in the air.
Yesterday’s horror was the actions of one man armed with a car and knives. One human being caused havoc, ruining and ending lives. But the rest of us have carried on. Society has not changed.
London has not fallen, as the Arab News oddly declared on its front page. The beating heart of the UK was not stopped by a cowardly killer. One man will not put and end to democracy.
But some of us want to use the murders to promote our own prejudices – Muslims are inherently dangerous; immigration means death; only the State can protect us; the Jews did it; Islamophobics will race riot; white people have done worse; and more. They make misstep after misstep. The way to defeat the terrorists is to neuter them by celebrating freedom and trusting people. Don’t be like the killer by seek victimhood and fomenting fear and otherness.
You can keep calm and carry on. And as you carry on also keep having fun, keep being rigorous, energetic, saucy, curious, challenging, boisterous, vibrant, loud, welcoming, rude and defiant. The bigots hate that. Keep it up.