I AM afraid. Things are happening today which would, not so many years ago, have been unthinkable.

Graves are being vandalised, war memorials desecrated, commemorative plaques stolen and old people physically attacked.

These are crimes which, until a short time ago, would not have happened because even the hardest and the most unbelieving of villains, still harboured an innate fear of the wrath of God.

Sadly that seems to be fading.

Now it seems there are no depths to which these people will not go.

People who didn’t go to church and those not particularly religious, still felt a healthy respect for it, but that, too, seems to have waned and therein lies the danger.

As children we were taught the difference between right and wrong at school and what would happen to our souls if we transgressed.

In later years, even though we might laugh and scoff at the very idea, you find that it’s still there, at the back of your mind, laying that restraining hand on your shoulder.

Another problem rearing its head for debate is discipline.

The question for both home and school is whether to cane or not, to hug or not to hug; thank goodness there were no such problems when my three sons where growing up and giving me grief — a quick clout and we all knew where we were.

They knew, as I knew when my mum smacked me, that it wasn’t because she didn’t love me, it was because I had been naughty and done something wrong.

Children, in fact all of us, need parameters, boundaries and rules.

Parents, schools, even the Government, seem to be suffering from abrogation of responsibility, so it’s time we pulled our socks up and got back to some collective cohesion.

Political correctness has been given a go and we have to face the facts that it’s not working, so let’s look at what did work — and we all know what that was!