The chainsawing and chipping of some fifty horse chestnuts in Wandsworth featured in the Daily Mail this morning. I normally use the Mail as one of the links for newsworthy stories, primarily because of its ease of access and format; not because I slavishly follow and commend it’s politics, or indeed of their sidebar pix stories which go into tremendous detail about which ‘Sleb’ went shopping, or to the gym, or who is now sleeping (allegedly) with whomever.
But this story intrigued me, simply because of the over-the-top manner in which it describes the actions of a Council who legally decided, after due consultation, that the trees might pose a risk to residents in the future, and that they had to go. Residents were assured that all trees would be replaced; so all that is needed to replace the leafy glory is time.
So, Daily Mail; check your hyperbole; this is not a massacre.
Massacre means planning, massacre means cold calculations about many human beings. Massacre means the memories of the quaint villages of Oradour-Sur-Glanes, of Lidice; or even, in more modern and relevant times; of New York: these were massacres!