going back?


I love that song, but going back isn’t always a good idea. Sometimes we come too close.

Last week our journey west was hugely disrupted by delays on the motorway. Eventually, the radio news told us why the road was closed. Prison Officer David Black had been murdered on his way to work, because of the job he did.

Going back.

Another murder, another funeral, more heartache, more pleas for no retaliation. A reminder that our society is still far from normal. Ben- Lifer on the Loose– has an interesting discussion on the role (or lack of) of prison officers in rehabilitation; but how to build appropriate relationships to support such rehabilitation when personal security is still such an issue?

Going back.

In April of last year, I wrote about the murder of policeman Ronan Kerr. We are better than this.

Going back?

I need to take heart from the little signs of ‘normality’ that still take me by surprise- a police officer, in uniform, on her own, going into the supermarket. We are making progress. There are small minded, angry, people all over the world, not just in this cantankerous small place.

Criminality, turf wars, shootings- sadly these are part of ‘normal’ everywhere also. It is good for us that we have regained the ability to be shocked by such things.Progress can take unexpected forms.

Going back?



22 thoughts on “going back?

  1. There will always a small number of people who oppose the peace process. But they have zero support in the wider community. The rebirth of Northern Ireland is continuing regardless of these stubborn individuals.

  2. It was deeply shocking to hear of his murder, and be thrown back to the dark days. It is obviously horrendous for his family. I was further shocked to hear our deputy first minister weakening his condemnation by with the insertion ‘albeit a prison officer’. What kind of doublethink is that?

  3. I have so many questions to ask in order to understand this. However, I think I’ll stay mute, that’s not the same as deaf and numb, I will follow the links. Such events shame only a few not the new generation who has obviously moved onward.Your question ‘going back’ is more a defiant declaration , ‘turn your back and look forward’. I can’t imagine you would be a minority there, I would hope that is not the case.

  4. Were the majority partially dehumanised by it all in ‘the old days’? Agree. Regaining the ability to be shocked speaks volumes about how much has changed.

  5. I was in Belfast last weekend for our annual get together – even went to Larne for some reason. Have seen the changes over the past 20 or so years but still breaks my heart to see such futile gestures ending the life of a decent man. Best wishes.

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