the alternative Christmas Day message on Channel 4 has, on more than occasion, been irreverent. It’s certainly not the case this year after it was confirmed that it will be delivered by Brendan Cox.
It will be an emotional oration at the end of a year which will always be remembered for the murder of his much-missed wife Jo as the Batley & Spen MP arrived at a constituency surgery in Birstall.
The thoughts of all will be with Mrs Cox’s family, not least her two young children, as they spend their first Christmas without their irreplaceable mother, sister, daughter and inspiration. Yet it’s also so typical of the family’s fortitude that they strive, in the heartfelt words of the MP’s widower, to “remember how lucky we were to have Jo in our lives for so long – and not how unlucky we were to have her taken from us”.
However, given Mrs Cox’s humanitarianism and continuing dangers to world stability, this message which deserves the widest possible audience. As Mr Cox said himself, the need to defend tolerance “isn’t someone else’s problem”, but should be a matter for all.