Friday, 31 August 2007

Princess Diana - Ten Years On

So, today marks the 10th anniversary of of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales. As someone who's been through the bereavement process a few times, I know that's a fairly significant date for her family, and, particularly, for her sons. They have my deepest sympathy for their personal loss.

But do we really, really need to see this issue plastered all over the media yet again? I never met the woman, and, from the way she behaved in the media, I didn't want to. During her last few years of life, I grew sick and tired of picking up a newspaper only to find her filling the first few pages.

Her antics were of no more than passing significance to me then, and they're even less interesting today. Looking back to the time of her death, I remember thinking, "Oh, that's sad. Her boys will be upset, poor lads. Handy for Charlie and Camilla, though. Now maybe we'll get some proper news in the papers." Whereupon I went about my business.

The outpouring of so-called public grief that followed was nothing short of ridiculous. Most of those people who insisted on hanging around, wailing and making fools of themselves hadn't met her either, didn't know her personally and couldn't possibly feel any genuine grief - certainly not to the extent demonstrated in the streets.

Rather, they were mourning the passing of a media-created facade that they had grown to identify with through endless publicity, in much the same way that folks can't seem to distinguish between actors and the characters they play. To make such a spectacle out something that, for those folks who really were close to her must have been agonisingly distressing, is, to my mind, utterly disrespectful to the woman those street-wailing fools were allegedly mourning.

And now, presumably as penance for whatever our national sins may be, we have to go through the whole tedious thing again, with every grim moment relived. "Where were you when... Did you go..." - I'm bored rigid with the whole damn thing!

Let the poor woman rest in peace, allow her nearest and dearest to get on with their grieving in private and let the rest of us - those who retain any sense of perspective, at least - get on with our lives with newspapers unsullied by mention of the whole turgid business.

Billy Seggars.

1 comment:

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