Apologies. My thoughts today are very much coming from a dark place.
A tragic picture, a young life ended far too soon and a little body left in the surf.
People cry and wail and shout, we must do something, people are dying, men, women, children are losing their lives. Drowned in a cruel uncaring sea, dying slowly in a sealed metal box as the air runs out, falling beneath the wheels of a train or lorry.
And yet. The leaders of Europe stand back, only Germany has opened its arms and even there mobs form to offer violence to people who had fled with nothing from violence. In eastern and central Europe countries who have gained less from the EU than those to the west are building walls and pushing the refugees on trains to get rid of them as fast as possible. Images and stories of men and women having numbers written on their arms then loaded onto trains for Germany have been used to restart a historic link that is unture and raises harmful fears about nations struggling to deal with tens of thousands of people without identity documents and with nothing more than the names they claim.
Like the fear we see and hear on so many interviews with refugees about having their fingerprints taken so they can be identified and end up trapped in countries that don't want them and can't help them simply because those countries are the first ones they arrive in.
Greece has been all but abandoned over the last few years and is at the point now where the locals are in many cases little better off than the refugees arriving on their shores. But how much aid is Greece given, where is the steady flow of aid lorries, where are the camps springing up in Greece to aid these new arrivals.
In Germany they are being made welcome and yet still politicians whip up fear and mobs burn down buildings given over to the refugees. Some cities are overwhelmed as whole sections become foreign areas where few even speak German and become little enclaves of non European countries which simply creates more fears of foreign invasions.
European leaders talk of suspending the free travel of people across internal borders to deal with the problem while at the same time doing everything they can to push the refugees out of their own countries. While the general population do what they can to help fellow humans the politicians scheme and plot to get rid of the nuisance.
Europe, NATO, the western world did much to create this situation and by it's half hearted disinterest continues the situation which will only become worse as fighting spreads across the middle east and Africa, terrorists, religious groups and empire builders encouraged by the lack of response from the world powers staking out their own versions of hell while a few bombs are dropped on them and a few hangs are wrung.
I look at this and I see two things.
Firstly that the place to provide for these refugees is not at the end of thousands of miles of travel where they have already been subject to abuse, robbed by traffickers and criminal gangs and having left all they own far behind them.
The place to sort this is at its source. To provide for these people where they live not a thousand miles away. Various government have made such a mess of the middle east with its petty wars and western campaigns to overthrow rulers and tyrants then turn a blind eye to the mess that is left that drowning in the Mediterranean has become a viable alternative to staying at home. Poverty drives much of this and yet little is done to deal with that poverty as rich men and women in the west deal with rich men and women in the Middle East and people beg in the streets of both regions.
We spend billions on foreign aid in countries with their own space programs and yet where are the ships delivering supplies to these refugees in their own lands, we as nations were happy to topple their old leaders with armies and bombing campaigns and yet now that we in the west have created this chaos we stand back and speak of swarms of migrants as children drown.
We do nothing where it would be most effective and instead are building walls to deal with criminals.
Why is that? Perhaps because there is no profit for the politicians or corporations in aiding these people.
Secondly. To those who call for the government to extend a welcoming hand, to allow more people into the UK, to do far more to help the refugees, to stop the deaths, to prevent dead children being washed up on beaches.
Are you people paying attention?
I know most of you and you are good people, caring people with great hearts and enormous compassion. But have you been paying attention.
We live in a nation where hundreds of thousands have been reduced to poverty, hunger and homelessness, where thousands have been denied all support and thrown into the streets to die by an uncaring bureaucracy that is awarded rewards for sanctioning people.
You call for the UK government to step in and do more in this situation but do you not see that the problem is not a drowned child, the problem is all the drowned children and the hungry children and the homeless children. Not just the refugees dying to get to northern Europe, but also the ones who live here, at home.
This is NOT a matter of calling for the UK government to save a drowning child in the sea; instead this must be part of an overall drive to make our government and our politicians far more humane and accountable for the cruelties that they do everywhere. This is not a matter of saving one man or woman or child today then turning a blind eye tomorrow when the frenzy has died down and the media is no longer covering the story.
Our government and media call them immigrants because refugees have a legal status and yet while our borders seem completely porous to criminals those who apply to enter the country as refugees are subject to long months and even years of delay before a bare handful are granted entry. Unless they are rich oligarchs of course, they can come right in.
How can we expect our government to care about one child lost at sea when they do not seem to care about children starving or dying in this country. When our own government uses fear and hatred against groups within our own society to break us apart and to weaken us. When our government friendly media and our leaders speak of swarms and invasions and of thieves and rapists and we are told they are parasites seeking benefits and an easy life.
How can we offer help to the poorest and most desperate of people abroad when we don't offer help to the same here. When our own newspapers and TV are filled with special programs and interview making migrants seem like the enemy, when the poor and the sick and the disabled and the hugry are, week after week, made out to be nothing more than a waste of resources and a drain on the economy.
Where are the homes for these hundreds of thousands of refugees we should be sheltering when we don't have enough homes for the people already here, because there isn't enough profit in building cheap homes for poor people.
Where are the jobs for the refugees when they are exiled to the poorest and most deprived parts of the country where jobs are few because the Tory voters in the shires and the south east don't want any refugees around them?
Many of these people lack the education to work in western technological jobs, do we send them to school and university to get the qualifications they would need, will they be given the loans to pay for it because as refugees with no more than the clothes on their backs £9,000 a year is far beyond them.
We live in a wealthy nation such that even those less well off live lives far better than the refugees who are dying to reach us but poverty and suffering are not unique to any one place. As much as we may want to stop another child dying in the sea we must face the fact that we live in a nation where the government is actively hiding the number of people they have executed by stripping them of benefits or support and leaving them to die.
Calling for action where one child has drowned is noble and worthy but please look at the whole picture and call for a change to the cruelty, the corporate focused profit drive, the corruption, the inhumanity and the complete lack of compassion that is the hall mark of far too many of our politicians and corporate leaders.
We helped to create the wars and the death and the destruction that created these refugees but we as a nation have done the same in many other places including within our own borders.
Instead of calling for action to save one child we should call for action to save as many children as possible and to do so by forcing a change in our government and our leaders.
Nothing will happen as long as they rule over us like Dark Age kings counting their gold and uncaring of the peasants dying at their feet.