Friday, 29 April 2011
Two young men, two different lives
It’s funny – that’s funny-peculiar, not funny-ha-ha - the deal life serves up to different people.
Today in Westminster Abbey, a young man aged 29 who’s known nothing but privilege all his life will be married to a young woman who, while certainly not from the level of comfort of her husband, is very comfortably middle-class and will, from here on in, be as privileged as the man she’s married. Collectively, they’ll live lives where they may receive help in squeezing their toothpaste tube. Together they’ll be known among other things as the Baron and Baroness of Carrickfergus.
Six days from today will be the thirtieth anniversary of the death of another young man at the age of 27. This man was intimidated from his home at an early age, spent much of his adult life in prison and died after 66 days on hunger strike. At the time of his death he had been elected MP for Fermanagh-South Tyrone. His life was short, full of danger and deprivation, and his death long-drawn-out and painful.
We might disagree over how much each young man earned by his actions what life gave him. There’d be less disagreement over which experienced/ will experience the more comfortable life. But history, I'm sure, will have no problem in deciding which life - that of Prince William or Bobby Sands – is the more deserving of respect.