There is still uncertainty about the motivation for the attack, and it could have been caused by mental instability, but there are reports that it was politically motivated by racist views. If so, it was a political assassination.
It is entirely possible that the current European Union referendum has stirred anti-immigration opinions and was at least a contributory factor. This looks to me like another argument in favour of representative democracy and not a direct democracy.
There’s a great deal of confusion about the motive for and circumstances behind this murder, so I won’t comment further until some issues are clarified. It is however a fact that Jo Cox was a passionate believer in diversity, and it is possible that is why she was assassinated.
Three witnesses have now been named who heard the murderer shout “Britain First” as he attacked her. This certainly seems a politically motivated attack.
But Channel 4 News made a reference to possible mental health problems. The situation looks unclear at present. Earlier I had been convinced it was a political assassination. Things may become clearer within the next few days.
I do feel that the referendum has created tensions that will hard to get over.
Mental health issues do not constitute an excuse for murder. 40% of the population suffer mental health issues at one time or another but few commit crimes.
No, of course health issues do not excuse murder. The issue is that there is a possibility that the killing was not a careful decision to murder born of hate. The situation appears more complex this evening than it did this afternoon.
Well he carried a loaded gun and a lare knife. I doubt he was planning a picnic. But it is uncertain whether he actually targeted Mrs Cox or she just got in the way.
In our civilized society the general public are intelligent enough to debate issues and strive for a solution without resorting to violence. There are however, a minority, that will have tantrums, a behaviour typical to a 2 year old, where they will damage people and property, even to the extreme, to express their point of view.
“This looks to me like another argument in favour of representative democracy and not a direct democracy.”
Non-sequitur. Do you think that direct democracy somehow encourages more violence than representative democracy? If anything the reverse is probably true, but in practice neither is a very strong contributor to motivations for violence.
Representative democracy is a means to an end, not an end in itself. I think it should be the default mode. But sometimes the majority of the population thinks differently than that in Parliament (even with a proper system like PR). Thus, since representation is just a means to an end, occasionally referenda are necessary, but they should fulfil the following criteria:
Only possible as a result of a popular initiative.
Actually the referendum result is not binding, though it would be politically impossible for the Prime Minister to ignore it.
What we have currently in the UK is a binary Yes/No question with almost all rational arguments supporting one side. The proponents of the other opinion – politicians and press – are resorting to stoking fears of immigration, false propaganda, lies, distortions, Putinist relativism and “dog-whistle politics”. Rationality, truth and complexity are being pushed aside by the crude and stupid.
A referendum, if the debate is not cautious and rational, can be a poisonous experience which fails to determine any considered public opinion on an issue.
“it could have been caused by mental instability, but there are reports that it was politically motivated by racist views”