Wednesday, 10 April 2013
It's been two days since it was announced that Margaret Thatcher had died in a Ritz hotel suite following a stroke, and my timelines on various social networking sites are still full of people arguing over whether or not it's OK to celebrate the fact.
Thatcher's policies were extreme, and many groups of people were affected in completely different ways. From my point of view, my family only ever gained from her policies. Being council tenants, they were given the opportunity to purchase their house at a heavily discounted rate, thus putting them onto the property ladder and leading, not indirectly, to them owning a beautiful, detached house in Cornwall. This has led to my own life moving in directions that I never dreamt possible.
However, I am only too aware that many were affected in negative ways. In a bid to get the country out of debt, Thatcher made extreme changes that led to some people being worse off than they had been before.
There's a certain amount of jumping onto the hatred bandwagon where Margaret Thatcher is concerned, and a lot of people have contempt for her purely because those around them seem to. But for those that have been affected, positively or negatively, who can tell them that they're wrong for their own feelings with regards to her death?
Personally, I think she did some great things and that her death ought to be marked with the respect that she deserves. But I wouldn't dream of arguing with those who grew up in mining villages during the 70's and 80's, and believe that the World is a better place without her in it.
Whichever side you are looking at it from, Thatcher had an enormous impact on this country and won't be forgotten any time soon. Aside from respect for the woman herself, there needs to also be a certain amount of respect for the opinion of those affected.