The sharpest tragedy in the Pistorius scandal is the death of a young, intelligent woman - Reeva Steenkamp. Yet, the whole episode also threatens to strike a dagger into last year's Olympic legacy. For all that Pistorius did to prove the irrelevance of disability; he is now the blade runner that malfunctioned.
In the weeks leading up to the Paralympics the air was filled with a familiar, silent contradiction. The predominant line focused on how inspiring it was going to be, seeing athletes perform and overcome, despite their disabilities. At the same time, a ComRes poll found that sixty-six percent agreed that "people with disabilities are often regarded as second-rate citizens".
Empathy can be expressed on a spectrum, and how a child responds to a given situation may depend on a range of different complex psychological and child development issues. For example a child on the autistic spectrum may not recognise that their online actions or behaviour may come across as inappropriately blunt.
I can't get enough of the 7 up series, a TV documentary following a group of people across the course of their lives. The first instalment was in 1964, when a group of 14 seven-year-olds from different backgrounds were selected to participate with the original premise "give me a child until he is seven and I will give you the man" and "the union leader and the business executive of the year 2000 are now 7 years old."
Recently the International Olympic Committee (IOC) launched the Athletes' Hub, a social media platform designed to bring athletes and fans closer together. A lot has been written about the goals and functionality behind the platform so I won't go over that again; instead I thought it would be interesting to ask why many large businesses don't do the same thing?
We're selfish, independent, hooked on instant-gratification, either completely overwhelmed with choices or backed into a corner with nowhere to turn and on top of that we're ruining the planet, grotesquely unhealthy and surrounded by people who think The X-Factor is quality entertainment. It's a sorry state of affairs people, but what's the answer?