So yesterday evening here in Australia news came through that former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher had passed away, something that had been on the cards for a considerable period of time. To be frank, what has followed in the media or on social networks has been startling.
I must admit, I have had massively conflicting feelings over the whole matter. On one hand I have taken pride in not allowing the death of anyone I disagree with to change me where I begin to gloat, that said I have never felt such a conflict internally where I am close on (and I’m trying to find the right word here) perhaps happy. I’m not happy though, I’m more seeing this time as one where the battle to re-evaluate someone’s legacy is being waged immediately and with great gusto.
We have the MSM which is being reverential and may even be accused of rewriting history itself whether by act or omission with their obituaries and analysis. However, what I find a whole lot more fascinating is the ongoing massive disconnect between the MSM and the social networks which are awash with people openly celebrating an elderly lady’s death or reminding all of her legacy.
It would appear that a large section of the populace is being ignored by the media outlets leaving a vacuum for those to close on revel in her passing. People are reminding others of her support for Apartheid era South Africa, Chile’s murderous despot Agusto Pinochet and Suharto in Indonesia, how she destroyed livelihoods in the North of England, allowed the police to act with impunity in tarring Liverpool supporters as scum of the earth and thieves at Hillsborough or for her policy here in Ireland where her government facilitated state direction of unionist paramilitaries while state forces acted with impunity outside of the law. The list goes on.
But what I hate most of all is that I actually hate someone, I’ve never felt that before and it’s unsettling for me today, I just want the feeling to go away. Will I say a prayer for her soul? Of course, everyone deserves to have a prayer or whatever offered in their name, but I just hope that her legacy is one where people say never again will we allow someone that destructive to be in charge.