Today I turned up for a debate about the referendum for students that I had agreed to do. At my suggestion we decided to pay tribute to Jo Cox and to talk about why democracy matters, instead of rehearsing the arguments for and against EU membership.
Murder always brings out great grief. The needless brutality affects us all. The sense of loss is greater as a life is often cut short which would have many years to run.
The murder of someone on public service brings out a general public grief.
We mourn as a community anyone of our military killed on active service.
We mourn as a society any police man or woman murdered during the course of their duties.
And we mourn as democrats any MP killed when doing their work to represent us.
We mourn intensely and together, men and women of all views and parties, united in this collective grief.
When an MP is attacked it is important that we do not let these crimes create barriers between MPs and those we represent.
The job can only be done with access for constituents with problems and views. It needs regular contact between MP and constituents.