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Celebrity deaths should be kept in perspective as the world does have more pressing concerns

You'd swear that nobody had ever died before such was the outpouring of grief over the loss of so many celebrities last year.

But hold on: people were dying long before 2016, as you may have noticed. That is why we have graveyards, why they are full and why an undertaker has never gone out of business.

While it is always sad to hear of someone's passing it must be noted that neither Leonard Cohen, George Martin nor Richard Adams were in the first flush of youth. While Debbie Reynolds' death was particularly poignant, considering that her daughter had passed only the day before, she was of a decent age, too.

So, there was no Black Death epidemic in 2016 that made it stand out from any other, but I think the sense of gloom pervading Western society at the moment has more to do with political strife, terrorism and war rather than the death of some dearly loved music and film stars.

Certainly both the Brexit result and Donald Trump's US Presidential victory have upset a lot of people, as have the shocking images which have come out of Syria.

But people need to keep perspective. The world is never better or worse, really; only different.

And who knows what this year will bring?

ARTHUR CANNON

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