On the day that Thomas Mair was convicted of the murder of MP Jo Cox, I’m heartened to see so much positivity about her life and what she stood for.
Jo’s amazing, brave sister, Kim talked about continuing Jo’s legacy of compassion, tolerance, acceptance and understanding. Her husband Brendan, in his statement, reminded us that her murder was:
An act driver by hate which instead has created an outpouring of love.
An act designed to drive communities apart which instead has pulled them together.
In a world of so much uncertainty, seemingly full of hatred and a determination to pull us apart from one another, rather than together, we need to heed these words. How do we make sense of these things when we live in a country that stands divided about how we want our future generations to live, when the world is faced with a new US president who wants to ‘build a wall’ and make friends with a Russian president who puts his own needs before the lives of innocent people in a country that can’t escape death and destruction.
We see death and heartbreak every day, yet turn away from it because we don’t know what else we can do.
This has been the most unbelievable year. One where I’ve woken up to hear things I never expected to hear, to witness things that have broken my heart and to wonder what sort of world we live in. It has left me wondering what the future will bring.
The Facebook group More in Common said we are committed to remembering Jo’s life, not her death and the Yorkshire Evening Post refused to put a picture of Thomas Mair on the front cover of their paper, choosing instead to show a photo of Jo in her wedding dress with the headline: Remembering Jo and all she stood for.
As the YEP says of Thomas Mair, good riddance, we hope he rots in prison. And as for Jo’s legacy, I hope with all my heart that it continues.
“We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us”