Her Majesty always has an appropriately sincere and dignified form of words for all occasions and this year’s Christmas message was no exception; her choice of subject was very apt. Reconciliation is indeed an integral part of civilised society and Christianity, the return of the lost sheep or of the prodigal son being but two illustrations from the Gospels. Yet how can there be reconciliation without contrition and recognition that one or more mistakes were made?
In referring to the Christmas Truce of 1914, Her Majesty was highlighting both a triumph of humanity and an even greater tragedy – the armies went back to war; to maiming and murdering on an industrial scale. There was no defying the leaderships in both countries who wanted the war to continue, yet those soldiers in no-man’s land had much more in common with each other than they had with their ruling establishments, not least that they wanted the terrible war to stop and to go home. Thus great power is exerted over us for good or evil, even surpassing our humanity, feeling for self-preservation and religious faith. Indeed all of these have been regularly twisted in the pursuit of greed, power or just plain evil intent by those in some form of power.
So what about reconciliation between the ruling establishment and us, the People? When will they cease their deceits, manipulations and abuses of us? We are a tolerant and forgiving People and our prodigal leaders would find ready reconciliation and a new chapter of working together in an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect could begin. Yet we know this is unimaginable.
Can you imagine Ed’s Labour Party showing the slightest contrition for the industrial scale rape of vulnerable children and young women that happened on their watch in places like Rotherham and Rochdale? The redoubtable Harriet Harman is silent on this one. Or will we see contrition for their disastrous economic mismanagement and energy policy (continued by the present government) which places many vulnerable people in fuel poverty? We will probably never know how many people have died and will continue to die unnecessarily from hypothermia.
When will Dave or his party show any contrition for getting us into the wasteful, undemocratic, costly, bossy and increasingly delusional EU, and continually misleading us about it? There is no point any more since we all know we are being deceived. There will be no meaningful negotiation or referendum; everything will be rigged to give the ‘right’ answer acceptable to our rulers. And on the economy, when will George Osborne realise we don’t his believe boasts that the country is living within its means or that we are better off?
As for Nick Clegg, he could confess that his cunning plans to remain in power forever through proportional representation or making the House of Lords into an exclusive second home for politicians were deceptions for his party’s good, not ours. But then this is probably just the tip of the iceberg.
When Christianity was new it reached out to the socially excluded with a message of faith, hope, love and community which bypassed the political/religious establishment of the day. 2015 promises to be a divisive year, worse than 2014. The General Election and its aftermath promise to be sources of division, possibly creating wounds that will take a long time to heal. And so our Queen’s message may yet be more relevant tomorrow than even today.
Photo by Alex Grant (alextakesphotos)