Editor's Viewpoint: We must never allow the horrific impact on families through savage paramilitary ‘justice’ to be clouded from our view
Last Sunday, Michael McMahon was shot and badly wounded in a paramilitary ‘punishment’ attack.
Today, we carry an interview with Michael who talks graphically about the pain and fear created by this outrage.
Dried traces of blood are still visible in the hallway of the house where the attack took place, and Michael’s father, who was targeted in a sectarian attack in the 1990s, was locked away in an adjoining room. Michael and his father don’t know the reason for the attack, and they are among only a handful of people to speak out about such behaviour.
In most other places, such an attack would be in the headlines for days.
Sadly, however, we seem to have become so inured to such suffering.
It is unusual for people to remember the name or face of such a victim, and when the incident was discussed on the Nolan radio programme, some listeners had no sympathy for the grotesque sequence of events which engulfed this family.
There is almost something medieval about such barbaric treatment, and the victims and their families need counselling and help to cope, rather than cold cynicism.
If, as a society, we hand over, or give the impression of handing over, to these savage groups, we are much the poorer for it.
The only source of justice is the legal process to counter the lawless thugs who blight our society.
Paramilitary groups try to give the impression that they are standing up for the rights of the wider community, but this is bogus nonsense.
In fact, they are continually trying to carve up and maintain lucrative territory for themselves, and to keep their members brutally occupied.
Instead of appearing to condone such behaviour, people would be better contacting the police and helping to put these savages behind bars.
A sense of civic rage, which is conspicuously absent, would not go amiss either.