Ray looks back over the past year and muses about some of the stranger decisions taken by our leaders!
Well, it's the end of yet another year! It only seems a couple of weeks ago since we were wishing everyone a happy 2005. And what a year it has been? There has hardly been a month without some major disaster' mostly to areas already deprived where the people are already clinging to the most meagre of lives. Then there has been the continued threat from terrorists; both here at home and abroad.
Our servicemen and women remain on active duty in almost a dozen overseas locations; little wonder their moral is at breaking point! The problem for most people is that they "are out of sight and out of mind" so there is no real pressure on the government to bring them home. Apart, that is, from the relatives, friends and families of our troops who daily await the news of yet another loss of life. Let us hope that in this, our most Christian of festivals, some time can be given by those who govern us, to find a way to pull back from our confrontations with other nations.
The Christmas festival has once more produced an unbelievable range of Politically Correct decisions aimed at not causing offence to other faiths. Yet one Indian Councillor bravely fought his council for the right of the town to display a Happy Christmas sign. As he said, "In India we have about 500 religions, so we are used to living with minorities.".
I also read that pencil sharpeners are to be banned from schools because they pose a potential threat to children! What doesn't pose a threat if children are not properly supervised and subjected to sensible disciplines? Today I bought a box of luxury Christmas crackers which contained the warning "Adult Crackers. These crackers are not suitable for children under 14 due to functional sharp points and edges!" The so-called functional sharp points and edges refer to 'prizes' contained in each cracker-such as a padlock &key, a necklace, a torch and a pen. You couldn't make it up, could you?
However, since it is Christmas, perhaps it is time to be charitable. So no more digs at those who direct our lives from their ivory towers; let us just be thankful that we live in such a wonderful county where friendship is the order of the day..
On behalf of all members of the Village Pump team, may I wish you all a very merry and safe Christmas and a prosperous and healthy 2006. Eat, drink and be merry and remember those less fortunate to whom a cheery greeting or an act of kindness would bring true Christmas joy.