20 March 2015

With all the political activity over the past few days, it’s easy for stories that are not in the spotlight to be missed. However, one of these stories caught my attention this week and – at a time where men’s mental health is becoming more a part of mainstream discussion – I felt I couldn’t let it pass without comment.

dalai-lama-quoteLast weekend, a crowd gathered at the foot of a supermarket multi-story in Telford. The reason? A suicidal man was standing on the roof. Whilst police negotiators did their best to help him, onlookers report hearing shouts of encouragement from certain members of the crowd!

When I first read this story, I was lost for words. I cannot comprehend the desire to encourage a fellow human being, especially one in obvious emotional distress, to cause themselves harm.

I truly believe that most people in this world are caring, empathetic people; however, I do wonder what has happened to this select few to make them lose compassion for others. Is there something we could be doing earlier in people’s lives, perhaps at school, to help them realise the value of human life and the importance of being kind and supportive to other people?

The more we can do to get people connecting with and relating to those around them, regardless of whether they are strangers or friends, the better our society will be. So what’s the solution? What can we do to make this happen?

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