I realise that this title is vague and weird – this is because what I have to talk about is vague and weird. Also – trigger warning – I’m about to talk about an assault/murder that cropped up in Irish news today.
Now I’m not usually one to follow the news, to be honest. I like to formulate my ideas like any other anxious spiritualist, through meditating on my thoughts, reading self help books, watching videos on YouTube and while staring at my cat.
I grew up in South Africa, where unfortunately there is so much crime that the daily news instead becomes a ‘greatest hits’ of the day’s happenings. Ain’t no single mugging, or break in or sometimes murder getting in past the mass hijacking on a gridlocked road, or the murder of a family or the hold up of a shopping centre. Its insane, because I’m not even embellishing.
The funny thing is, when you hear that every day on the news you become numb to it, and by the time I left home I was certainly ambivalent to all forms of violence. South Africa is (according to google) the rape capital of the world. Nothing is going to phase me if it comes on the news, lemme tell you.
But when I moved to Ireland something changed.
It was something that took me a while to notice but when I did I saw it everywhere, how incredibly outraged the public was whenever a crime was reported. Not even the mass assault or crazy burglaries I’m used to hearing, but single acts of violence that wouldn’t even grace a South African Headline. They care, they want better for themselves and everyone around them, they are so very shocked by violence.
I think it’s beautiful (their reaction – not the violence). It enraptures me, because it means the place I occupy is largely innocent, largely good, largely safe.
This brings me to the murder of a young woman in County Offaly, who was out for a run at 4pm. For me, this is tragic, but it is expected – which is, honestly, very sad for me. But the reactions of those around me were great and they were powerful – a stand in is being posed for tomorrow, I see posts everywhere about gender violence and protecting women. It feels almost like a dream.
Its not like South Africa doesn’t want equality and safety and rainbows and wealth – but its so far removed from reality that no one really fights for it anymore. But here are these humble Irish folk, fighting for the rainbow.
I love this country.
Until next time xx
P.S Rest in Peace to her, who didn’t deserve this, who had so much to live for, who will be missed and is always loved.