However, by the time I was the age he was when he first met me I had gotten over the hope of ever hearing from him again. Then out of nowhere he drops me a line on Facebook describing how he ‘missed his boys’ and how he was sorry he had ‘nothing to show for his life.’ Over a week in June 2012 we chatted back and forth. After all the ‘dad’ and ‘son’ stuff I decided to lay down some ground rules: I got that maybe this wasn’t all of his making — sure, I don’t know — but I have a dad. My dad, who I have never known as a ‘stepdad,’ raised me.
At twenty-seven years of age, Seán was a broken man. The trauma of what he witnessed and the effects of his near drowning caused him a severe emotional and psychic collapse, the ripples of which washed up against him – sometimes pulling him back under – for the rest of his life. His bi-polar disorder produced a curious older man; someone who would laugh with all the joy of life and sink into the bleakest recesses of the valley of the shadow of death – sometimes in the same day.
Here’s my secret: I am not an independentista. I am a Liberationist. Liberation – the “Let my people go!” of the Book of Exodus – is as much about the liberation of the nation as it is about the liberation of society and the family as it is about the liberation of the person. Scottish independence, then, for me, is as much a cause of national liberation as it is a cause for the liberation of everyone in Scotland from the constitutional, social, and economic conditions that keep us in chains – and we are in chains; for some these are the fetters of poverty and for others they are the bonds of indifference.
The truth will out. May knows this and so does her party’s pals in the media. That is precisely why they are slowing this down as much as they can. They are hoping the public’s attention wanders off.
As the well-to-do homeowners of plummy and posh south Kensington wring their hands as the death toll mounts on their backyard, it was their demand for a more pleasing vista – and not the Grenfell residents’ plea for better, safer accommodation – that led to the multi-million pound RBKC council “regeneration” of Grenfell tower.
Only in passing did the news mention the insignificant fact that at least two hundred bodies were pulled from the water and that in the past three days more than 700 hundred innocents have been found bobbing lifeless up and down on the sea.
Our childish question; “Why did no one help him?” must be asked again and again with fresh opportunity for us to answer that question in our words and actions. We are the answer to that question.
Follow @UrFhasaidh Everyone but undergrads knows it is bad form to talk in the library. During my early days as a student in Trinity College I took to sitting up on the fifth floor of the Berkley Library, where the theology books and those on the history of religion were to be found. We called … Continue reading Shhh!