Paul Stainton: Our spirit will triumph in the end

Peterborough Telegraph's Man behind the mic column by Paul Stainton, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire host -
Peterborough Telegraph's Man behind the mic column by Paul Stainton, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire host -
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It seems every week our way of life comes under attack from one side or another. The horrific events in Paris, carried out by cowards, in the name of some sick, twisted ideology, only emphasises my point - Innocent people, butchered in cold blood and their families torn apart forever - Their only “crime” was the way they lived their life.

It is impossible to imagine the hurt and the suffering of the parents that unknowingly waved their children goodbye for that final time -There but for the grace of God go you and I.

There is no talking to those who carry out these atrocities, people whose minds have been warped by a cruel and distorted version of Islam, there is no reasoning to be had or debate to be entered into. They are beyond words.

Some say it is time for the west to drop yet more bombs and perhaps even put boots on the ground but wasn’t that the folly of Blair and Bush in Iraq - A recklessness which cost many lives and only served as a recruitment tool for the barbarous leaders of this sick death cult?

Of course the politically correct amongst us will never see a justification for military action but had we not rushed to invade Iraq, as some sort of misguided payback for 9/11, then I have little doubt that the world would have dealt with this far bigger threat, much earlier.

The scale of the problem is now so vast that only a coalition of world powers, led by the neighbouring Muslim countries, would have any chance of countering the threat successfully and winning any sort of long term peace.

But whilst we wait for that momentous day to arrive we must not allow ourselves to be cowed by the evil that lurks in the shadows, plotting our society’s destruction.

Our traditions and customs are under threat again but we must fight hard to ensure that they survive this latest onslaught of evil as we once again stand shoulder to shoulder with our French cousins.

So do not let anyone tell you that your belief or behaviour is wrong or somehow offensive, or that you will have to change your ways.

Instead celebrate your heritage, whilst at the same time embracing those from other cultures and religions that are different to us.

This is a time for us all to be more inclusive, more tolerant but above all proud to be British, proud of what we stand for.

So eat, drink and be merry, it is the only way to combat those that are consumed with blind hatred for who we are.

Dance around the maypole if you like, devour your bacon sandwich with lashings of brown sauce and sing your hymns loudly - Nobody of sound mind will be offended.

Celebrate your sexuality, exercise your right to free speech and organise that nativity play for the little ones this Christmas.

And when you are gathered around the tree this year (not the monstrous plastic homage to Ferrero Rocher in Cathedral Square of course) hold your loved ones close and be truly thankful for all that you have.

In other words, Keep calm and carry on, our spirit will triumph in the end.