As journalists we regularly have to put our emotions to one side as we cover a story.
It’s not always easy when we’re reporting tragedies, accidents and human suffering, but we have to put on a professional veneer and get on with the job of getting the facts out there.
What is it that makes someone see a group of youngtsers attending a concert as a target?
Even when it’s an event that happens outwith our normal ‘patch’ it’s our duty to seek out any local angle.
Every so often, however, something happens which is just so horrific that there is nothing that can mask our feelings.
This week’s events in Manchester marked one such occasion.
In all the outpourings that have followed the senseless act, one question summed up the futility of it all for me.
I can’t even remember who posed it so numbed was I by the news, but one radio presented asked; “What is it that makes someone see a group of youngtsers attending a concert as a target?”
Yes, people have strong believes – I have many myself – but most of us keep them to ourselves and, if we do want others to follow our lead, then we seek to convert them by reasoned argument – not violence and murder.
I’m sure that, over the next few days, weeks and months, we will start to get a clearer picture on the man responsible for this act of terrorism and the ‘reasons’ behind it.
But there is nothing that can remotely justify this outrage.
At this difficult time, Falkirk, in common with towns and cities across Scotland, the UK and the world, stands at one with Manchester - united against terrorism.