Legacy of a society that believes in nothing


Raw with grief, in a voice steady but tight with emotion, his appeal for calm on Wednesday was a beacon of hope amid the tumult and carnage of a horribly dark week for Britain.

Hours before he spoke, Tariq Jahan had lost his 21-year-old son Haroon, murdered in the Winson Green area of Birmingham by thugs who drove at him in their car in what appears to have been a racist attack.

No one could be more aware of the simmering racial tensions between Asians in his neighbourhood and those of Caribbean ancestry.

Yet Mr Jahan had the dignity, the compassion and the common sense to demand an end to the violence that had shattered his life. ‘Blacks, Asians, whites — we all live in the same community,’ he said. ‘Why do we have to kill one another? Why are we doing this? Step forward if you want to lose your sons. Otherwise, calm down and go home — please.

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