17 March 2007

Trident and the need for Reconciliation by Virginia

The Trident debate that was held on Wednesday was in many ways extremely predictable.A Government that has already decided to renew its’ unnecessary nuclear capacity & develop new weapons gets its way as usual. But watching the debate made me think that perhaps, something new was in the air. For a start, the scale of the back bench rebellion was much higher than I could have hoped for, but it was also the level of debate and discussion. To hear speaker after speaker get up and ask, “Just what are these weapons for? What are we being protected from?” even if it was mainly woolly liberals and new labourites fed up with their beloved leader, was immensely refreshing. I doubt that many of their questions made it to the mainstream press, what with Tony and David doing their double act of staking the claim for the necessity of Trident & the BBC News webpage helpfully obliging all day with cheery photos of those brave lads on the subs, and an incredibly biased piece on how important Trident is to the good people of Helensburgh, without a whiff of how the majority of Scotland would like these evil things out of their backyard thank you very much. Still, it did make me think a tiny little step had been taken, that it is no longer beyond the pale for politicians in the Houses of Parliament to actually think possessing nuclear weapons is a bad thing.

It was a coincidence that the debate was on the day that our eldest daughter was making her sacrament of reconciliation. This is an important part of the Catholic faith, by acknowledging our failings, repenting of them and being willing to start afresh we become reconciled with God. Whilst we watched her take this important step in her faith, I reflected that our nation should be repenting wholesale for the sin of Trident.

Trident is sinful because:
It has more firepower in each warhead than was used in the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs, it is a lethal weapon beyond our imaginings, even possessing such a thing puts us beyond the pale.
Rather than being used as a deterrent, it is used as an out and out threat, Geoff Hoon made it perfectly clear during the run up to the war in Iraq
It detracts vital resources from other more socially useful activities such as teaching our children, healing the sick, providing decent social care service.

It is only when the Prime Minister, and his best friend across the debating chamber, can begin to acknowledge this sinfulness and repent of it, that we as a nation can be reconciled.


Post a Comment

<< Home