Forget ‘virtue signalling’ – ‘empathy patrolling’ is the new moral phenomenon:
"...Virtue signalling has found its opposite number:
Empathy patrolling, the need to police who may feel what and when after an event of public import.
Jenkins has been telling us to calm ourselves for some time now — after Nice, Brussels, the Bataclan, San Bernadino, the Boston Marathon, Charlie Hebdo, and Glasgow Airport, to name a few.
The formula is always the same:
A bit of throat-clearing about terrorism being ghastly and all that, before explaining that the ‘real threat’ is ‘overreaction’ on our part.
It’s never clear with Jenkins, or other empathy patrollers, what level of reaction is permissible.
Ellie Mae O’Hagan was, like, well bummed about the public’s response to a minor skirmish in SW1.
She wrote: ‘Those who are hoping Britain will conduct itself with trademark stoicism and enlightenment may find themselves confronted with a jingoistic, authoritarian and frankly hysterical nation instead.’
The gushing Corbynista turned emotional martinet fretted that right-wingers ‘will use the events at Westminster to concoct the most frantically un-British response imaginable’.
What is ‘un-British’ is this insidious campaign to police instinct and tether sentiment — as though all the world can be greeted with cool disdain and an ironic quip.
There are fanatics plotting further outrages this very moment and their ambition is carnage on a grander scale.
There is nothing histrionic about acknowledging that, nothing irrational about worrying how, or if, we can stop them.
We may even permit our thoughts to turn dark or bloodthirsty.
These feelings are not wrong — they are natural and will be widespread.
They ought not to guide our actions or the remedies we pursue but to demand we suppress them altogether is to fake serenity at a time of turbulence.
Empathy patrolling makes some feel better about a world they cannot predict; police patrolling, preferably armed, makes the rest of us feel much the same.
Phoney solemnity won’t ‘send a message’ to the next Khalid Masood.
No one sees your stiff upper lip if your head is in the sand. "