(Pardon the typos, I'm typing this on my phone).
As we speak, Sydney is making international headlines for all the wrong reasons. A hostage situation in a city coffee shop has also sparked [reported] fears that other devices have also been planted elsewhere. The Sydney Opera House and other landmarks have been evacuated.
I'm sitting here at a coffee shop back home in Hornsby, in northern Sydney. After relaying NSW Police instructions to stay in our offices, our building manager came through a short time later to tell us we were closing up. As far as I know, people in buildings surrounding Martin Place are still in lockdown.
I feel for the people held captive in that café, and as much for their family and friends. It would be a truly terrifying situation, and I can't begin to imagine how they must be feeling. No, really. In all the media hype, discussions around political motivations and such, let us not forget this. We all hope for a peaceful resolution.
That said, I'm already feeling anger. I know those who would attempt to sway us will almost certainly have their way, once our Attorney General George Brandis and his band of Coalition MPs have had time to digest and exploit this tragedy to further their farcically ineffective surveillence bullshit. That metadata collection worked great for those people, didn't it?
What heartened me was seeing ordinary Australians walking the Sydney CBD streets, rolling their eyes at these idiots, enjoying coffee, taking in the otherwise beautiful day, politely apologising for bumping into you, and carrying on like nothing was up. That's how you handle cowards attempting to force your hand.