France has been wounded by a series of violent acts and I just want to make sure you all know that I’m ok. On the 7th of January, 12 people died during a shooting at the offices of the well-known satirical newspaper, Charlie Hebdo, in Paris. To show solidarity with the victims and to stand as a declaration that journalism cannot be silenced by such acts of aggression, the slogan ‘Je suis Charlie’ has been adopted by people world-wide. On the tram yesterday, the signs were flashing the hashtag. A minute’s silence was observed for the victims.
Sadly, this was linked to a secondary event which occurred in a supermarket today, in which at least four have died and a number of people have been wounded. I am hoping that these incidents help people to stand in solidarity against this sort of intimidation, to acknowledge the complexity of such situations (including our tendencies to make judgments before we have all the necessary information) and that we can find ways to reduce the disassociation and isolation from society often felt by people committing this sort of desperate crime. I get the feeling that the priority here will be protection and prevention- let’s hope that whatever actions are taken, they will ease the situation.