AS a solider who came perilously close to losing my life in Afghanistan, I object to anyone of any colour defacing Winston Churchill's statue or trying to pull it down.

Too many people lost their lives in World War II to erase history.

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Nonetheless, as a civilian, I support Black Lives Matter.

I still remember the day I was travelling to the military rehab centre at Headley Court for treatment on my leg and arm, which I lost when an IED exploded in 2008.

All of a sudden, I was boxed in by six police cars. I was a young black man in a decent car and I was targeted because they thought I was a drug dealer.

They searched the car boot, even taking my false limbs out and shaking them to see if drugs fell out.

Eventually, they accepted I was who I said I was, and that I had been wounded in Afghanistan. They apologised and gave me an escort to Headley Court, where I was late for my appointment.

But despite incidents like this, I urge you to remember that not everybody is racist.

Protests need direction

I support the BLM movement, but I don’t agree with every last little thing that is happening.

It is currently like rolling a boulder down a hill. No one is directing it – and it is getting out of control.

On the one hand, you have people fighting for Black Lives Matter. On the other, you have someone smashing windows, and others fighting to get The Inbetweeners taken off TV.

Meanwhile, protestors are fighting for Churchill’s statue to be taken down, and others are protecting it.

No one seems to be leading this mass movement. Everyone is just doing their own thing.

 And the one thing I have not seen much of, on social media, is anyone talking rationally about resolving the issues.

Calm down and spark real change

If we had spent the last two weeks sensibly discussing solutions instead of everyone going crazy, BLM would by now have had a Zoom call with Boris Johnson to talk about the problem and how to start fixing it.

To make any progress, everyone must take a deep breath and calm down.

People who oppose BLM do not have to agree with what they are saying, but at least if people on both sides had peaceful conversations, everyone would understand the issues behind the campaign. 

And there is good chance that more will come out in support of them.

But at least if people spoke calmly and thoughtfully, everyone would respond in kind and try to understand where we were coming from.

At the minute virtually everything you see online is posted by angry black people and angry white people.

Nobody will deal with or listen to anyone who is acting up like that.

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