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26 February 2009

Westminster was rightly silenced

By Staff Blogger

Jesus Christ told us to “become like children” and took vulnerable ones into His arms to bless them; they truly are the innocents. And so it is with Ivan Cameron, who died on 25 February at the age of six, severely disabled with cerebral palsy and epilepsy. He never asked to be in the public eye, and yet we all mourn him.

The political ceasefire that followed the sad news of the death of David Cameron’s son was welcome. At last, the inanities and vulgarities of the Westminster knockabout were put to shame. Prime Minister’s Questions was suspended. The media fell into collective sympathy. Mr Cameron may be wrong in some of his political beliefs and we may disagree with him, but this is nothing when one considers his humanity.

There is a consensus among those who know him that his love for his elder son was profound. He took many opportunities to leave work early to be with him. It is a dark coincidence that both Gordon Brown and Mr Cameron have now suffered the premature loss of a child.

It is said that Mr Cameron’s experience of having a disabled son changed his politics, softened them, made him more compassionate and understanding. He and his wife, Samantha, have spent much time in the past six years inside NHS hospitals – and it is said that this has changed the Tories’ approach to that valued institution.

For their part, the Camerons will never stop mourning their lost son. Our thoughts and prayers are with them.

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