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HomeNewsFear, loathing and disruption aside, terrorism won’t change our lives one jot

Fear, loathing and disruption aside, terrorism won’t change our lives one jot


This is the second in our series of articles by the much-loved TCW writer Nick Booth, who died in September. It was first published on September 14, 2017. You can read Kathy’s introduction here.

I’M determined not to let terrorism change my way of life – once I’ve adapted to all the lifestyle changes.

So let’s be positive.

OK, I might have to impose a total media blackout on myself for a while. Probably best not to read a paper, watch TV or go online. It’s bad enough when someone gets killed. But it’s the excited reactions of the media munchkins that I find really insulting and depressing. So I won’t switch on the radio in case I hear an offensive rant by James Owen-Lee-Child on LBC radio, London’s Biggest Condescension.

Still, mustn’t grumble, eh?

Maybe I’ll cycle along the river to Hampton Court. The bridge is trickier to negotiate now, because there are these massive ugly concrete monoliths blocking access. They’re on all the major bridges. And at train stations. And airports. And arenas. In fact, anywhere in the UK where people might come together. Each encounter with a concrete monstrosity is reminder that someone somewhere wants to kill –

– Whoa!!! Look out!!!

Oh, hang on, it’s OK. Sorry, for a second I thought that van over there was coming straight for us. Yeah, as I was saying, these terror attacks aren’t going to change the way I see the world.

Build bridges, not walls, I say. But then you might want to put some walls on the bridges, because people might try to repay you for your bridge-building by trying to kill you. Not just you: everyone has to be wary of attending concerts, eating out or just heading into work or school.

It won’t change our way of life, mind. It might change the cause of death for a few people though.

These acts of terror usually hit a small number of people. The secondary wave of fear is designed to hit us all. They want to see us divided. You know the sort of thing: our language and styles of public discourse being changed. Our social media conversations being policed and our TV stations oppressed by heavy-handed thought management.

But they won’t succeed, will they? Nothing will change. Apart from our thoughts, words and deeds. And freedom of movement.

Still, let’s not let terrorism change our way of life.

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Nick Booth
Nick Booth
Nick Booth is a freelance writer.

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