LESLEY KEATING: We must stop giving these '˜cockroaches' any credence

The terrible act of terrorism that took place at the Manchester Arena at an Ariana Grande concert was horrendous, heart-rending and terrible.

Iqra Saied, 13, wears an Ariana Grande t-shirt as she looks at flowers outside Manchester Town Hall
Iqra Saied, 13, wears an Ariana Grande t-shirt as she looks at flowers outside Manchester Town Hall

Sadly, acts like this are all too common these days.

These poor youngsters in Manchester were innocently enjoying what they expected to be a happy, exciting time, watching an artist they idolised. It should have been a memorable night, not their last.

The bomber died too, so has neatly escaped justice. But for the family of the victims, their agony is only just beginning as life will never be the same again.

Acts like this will offend, outrage and sadden all decent human beings and the fact children and youngsters were deliberately targeted is beyond appalling.

But what I’d like to know is why TV reporters are so fond of describing these incidents in such detail, and, in this case, as a ‘professionally masterminded’ and ‘sophisticated’ attack?

No doubt the group behind this latest act is now slapping itself on the back, congratulating itself on even greater free PR after being reported in such ‘glowing’ terms.

A journalist covering this on ITV described how a suicide bomber’s original garment of choice, the ‘bomb vest’, is now not such a great idea for terrorists as they’d need conspicuous, bulky clothing to hide them. Backpacks have overtaken them as the perfect cover for home-made bombs.

He then went on to describe some of the components of these home-made bombs and added how the Manchester terrorist had managed to stay outside of security reaches by targeting those leaving the gig rather than attempting to enter the venue itself. More useful ideas for a would-be assassin to mull over…

We need to stop giving these individuals and groups such credence in the public domain. By calling them ‘monsters’ ‘terrorists’ and ‘murderers’ aren’t we just affirming their own, warped vision by using the very titles that they’d condone?

One of my friends referred to the perpetrators as ‘cockroaches’ and I think she was spot on there.


I quite enjoy quiz shows on TV.

It’s a chance to pit your wits against the contestants and see what you can answer correctly.

But the other day I had the misfortune to catch Tipping Point hosted by Ben Shepherd.

It wasn’t the formula I objected to, nor the host – although I admit I prefer Ben in other guises rather than as host of this show.

No, it was the questions. Inane doesn’t begin to cover it.

One was: ‘If something is masculine, what sex are we referring to?’

I kid you not.

Then there was a distinct pause while the camera scanned the blank-faced contestants before one finally hit the buzzer.

Give me strength!


University is a rite of passage for many young people and the chance to gain a degree to enhance their employment prospects is a very valid pursuit.

But many students haven’t got a clue what they are going to do with their qualification when they graduate.

They feel that just getting a degree itself is enough and there is a real lack of business awareness.

Many just don’t have the faintest idea about the most vital component of the working world they are hoping to populate – that of commercial viability.

Isn’t it time universities made it clear to their graduates that a high proportion of companies they are hoping to join actually need to make a profit?

Just a thought...