My wife posted the following to Facebook earlier today. I’m copying it here with her permission, because I think it deserves to be shared far and wide.
This morning I saw a piece of D-Day remembrance co-opted by a racist group asking, in a somewhat accusatory tone “what are you doing for our country and our children?” It was not a call to honour those who fought, or to remember the sacrifices and tragedies. It was a call to join them in fighting their imagined invasion of Britain in the form of ordinary folk doing their best for their families. This is my answer to them.
I am refusing to accept the propaganda of racism and xenophobia. Jealousy and lack of understanding, fed by lies and half-truths, grow into hatred and fear. They foster insults and violence, and escalate to riots, uprisings and invasions. War is born from the selfish beliefs of a powerful few preying on the ordinary fears of many, turning them against those who are a different colour, or hold different beliefs, or are from a different country or even a different town. Only the powerful few find any glory, the rest find the ugly, harsh reality of bloodshed, tears and loss. Everyone who fought for our country, for every country, did so to build a better world. I honour them by continuing that work, by building a better future. I teach my children compassion, empathy and acceptance in the hope that in some small way I can help to prevent them from ever seeing the world shrouded in the stench of war. I do this for the sake of my children and for the sake of all children.
When You Go Home, Tell Them Of Us And Say,
For Their Tomorrow, We Gave Our Today.