Ray Mears: The killing of Sir David Amess is intended to generate fear - but now is a time for resolve

It’s a time to stand up for what we believe in.

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Yesterday we lost one of the nations greatest listeners. Sir David Amess was an exemplary Member of parliament. Always willing to consider opposing views and to debate issues, he was a man who tirelessly worked for his constituents and to champion their causes. He dedicated his life to the public and ultimately fell on the frontline, while actively engaged in service to the community. He may have been brought down by a cowardly act, but he will not be forgotten. We should take heart from his personal courage and his example.

Thinking about the days tragic event I was reminded of the old saying, ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.’ It may seem an old fashioned thought but I firmly believe that each of us has a duty, to contribute to our nation and to global society. We must work daily to preserve our democracy, its freedoms its values, to expose malice and promote positivity, to learn from mistakes and to strive to make the world a better place.

Yesterday’s terrible events, may have been intended as an attack on our democracy, but in truth it was a futile act and a timely reminder that we are strongest when we stand together. Our enemies should not make the mistake of misconstruing our willingness to engage in robust political debate, scrutiny and disagreement as a weakness. For open and lively debate is our greatest strength. The secret is in the name the United Kingdom.

As we move forwards we must of course adapt to the challenges of the new world. Free access of the people to government is a fundamental principal of British democracy that must be maintained. If this means providing our MP’s with security then be should. It is unreasonable to expect an MP to listen carefully to their constituents concerns, while at the same time watching out for potential dangers.

Events such as this are intended to generate fear, but this is not a time for fear. Now is a time for resolve, for courage, it’s a time to stand up for what we believe in.

In the coming days the world's attention will be focussed on the COP26 meeting and the challenges of reducing humanities negative impacts on the earth’s environment. The issue is not, as many say about saving the Earth, the Earth will survive regardless. The threat we face is to all life on Earth, ourselves included. If we fail in dealing with these issues, no corrupt idealism or dictatorship will survive to consequences. There has never been a better moment for humanity to unite in a cause, the opportunity is staring us in the face. I hope that the worlds leader will have the courage to seize that opportunity.

My thoughts of course go out to the family and friends of Sir David Amess.

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