My walk today was much taken up by a contemplation on the hand of human kindness, or more precisely its apparent disappearance from present day society. Much is made in social media about community, about inclusion of all, the exclusion of none, yet the ability and willingness to accept assistance, charity, help or just kindness without negative thought or accusation seems to have been largely erased from society’s playbook.
I well remember as a child feeling perfectly safe out and about in public, indeed my parents never gave one thought to any danger of threat presenting itself to either myself or my sibling, certain in the knowledge that the same general principles of fairness and responsibility were shared within society as a whole. Should danger have arisen community was ever present to intercede and protect without consideration for class, sex, age, creed or color. Perhaps it was some overhang from the ‘blitz’ mentality, a realization that all humanity is together in the same boat for good or bad and will float or sink according to common values. I offer my hand in friendship instinctively, but even my positivity is becoming jaded by the continual questioning of motivation, a suspicion that acceptance somehow carries a price beyond thanks.