When I think of the word vermin, I often apply it to those who I probably shouldn’t. Liars, shysters and the like, not to mention crooked politicians. When I watched DIY SOS tonight, I realised I might have misapplied the word.
Simon Dobbin, a loving father of three, is a Cambridge United football fan. After a game against Southend United in 2015, he was viciously attacked by so called Southend supporters and suffered a catastrophic stroke and a brain bleed. Now, he is severely brain damaged, paralysed, unable to walk or talk and needing round-the-clock care.
The positive side was Nick Knowles and his team rebuilding the family home in order to aid his recovery and to live his life at home, rather than in a care home. Scores of people worked for nothing, as they do on this inspirational programme, and did something wonderful. But.
The 12 men – men? – who caused his life-changing and almost life-ending injuries were sent to prison. Oh good, I thought. Justice was done. But was it? They got around three years each. Three years is a long time, although I doubt that they would serve that long. Given the trial was in 2017, they’re probably free men again. Simon Dobbin will never be free to do anything. His family have had their lives changed for life. I’m afraid my initial emotion when I read this was anger. The lowest low life on the planet.
And then one of Simon’s friends spoke to Knowles and explained simply that the attackers didn’t bear thinking about. They weren’t worth the effort. In such a powerful programme, this was arguably the most powerful part of all, the belief that good would always triumph.
I had thought of reprinting the names of the cowardly scum who attacked Simon, but realised it would be pointless. These were such pathetic knuckle-draggers some of them might even revel in their notoriety. In truth, my only sadness is that there won’t be a hell for them to go to, so I hope they suffer the equivalent of hell on earth.
Thanks to the BBC for sharing the story about Simon Dobbins. The light has seen off the dark. I’m celebrating the people who change lives for the better out of altruism and kindness.