The sound, fury, and futility of Alfie's Army

I've never understood the mentality of the mob.

Maybe it’s being part of the ‘’Something Must Be Done’’ generation which has gone from howling at the moon on social media to turning up en masse in protest at some terrible injustice, fuelled by a sense of grievance rather than the actual facts.

Alfie’s Army is the latest explosion of sound, fury and futility which thundered around a hospital where a tiny little boy with incredibly complex medical needs was dying.

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To offer support to his distraught parents is perfectly understandable, but, amid the debris of wilting flowers and deflating balloons, what exactly did they achieve?

Alfie’s death was as inevitable as it was devastating for his family.

With a degenerative neurological condition and in a semi-vegetative state, there was never going to be a miracle cure or any quality of life.

It was entirely understandable that his parents, Tom and Kate, should grasp at every single straw in their hope of a different outcome for their child.

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But their fight turned into a grotesque circus with far too many ringmasters pulling the strings to suit their own agendas.

The scenes outside Alder Hey Hospital ought to have shamed and embarrassed the nation.

Facebook rumours, replaced medical facts as the Something Must Be Done brigade chanted and sang for Alfie, and even tried to storm the hospital doors.

The very thought process which might have led to them marauding through corridors yelling ‘’justice for Alfie’’ is utterly bewildering.

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Those same corridors were filled with other families sitting quietly at the bedsides of desperately ill children, preparing for more treatment or recovering from surgery.

Did any of them stop to consider their feelings, or the fear and alarm their noise and chaos might have caused? Perhaps the most disgusting aspect of this situation was the witless, wretched abuse of hospital staff.

They were vilified online, and subjected to the wrath of the hingers-on– many with deeply worrying right wing views – simply because of where they worked.

Type Alfie’s name into Twitter and watch the abuse scroll past like sewage flowing into a treatment plant.

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Even the ghastly Nigel Farage managed to have his say. Predictably it was toxic and offensive, much like his political views.

True to form, he pandered to the mob, and went as far as suggesting Alfie’s death was a ‘’form of state sponsored euthanasia’’ – a glib, grotesque, throwaway line which his interviewer ought to have challenged, but this was Fox News which introduced Farage as a ‘‘Brexit Leader’’ and then wallowed in its own unbelievable ignorance of health care in the UK. It even tossed the word ‘‘hostage’’ into the mix. Fox and Farage are made for each other.

I have zero respect for him, and all the leeches who turned this personal tragedy into a grievance, and then used it for their own ends. The Something Must be Done brigade, once again, achieved, absolutely nothing.

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