As visitors to the Ink Desk will know, my forthcoming book is an autobiographical account of my journey from racial hatred to the Catholic Church. News of this book appears to be spreading amongst my old enemies in the Old Country. Here’s an e-mail I’ve just received from someone who seems to believe that I carried out a serious physical assault on his brother back in the 1970s. My reply follows:
Dear Mr Pearce,
My name is ____________ and I come from Ilford, Essex.
When I was growing up your name became well known to me.
My brother was an activist in the Young Communist League in the mid to
He was selling newspapers on the concourse at Barking Station and he was
physically assaulted by you. Quite seriously, in fact. He had serious facial injuries as he was kicked unconscious while he was on the ground.
Times move on and as I read in your autobiographical notes, those days are now apparently behind you. And if the conversion is a genuine one, then I
congratulate you on the change and on your new career. Not bad for a lad from
However, I remain curious. How do you come to terms with such past acts?
Does it not worry you, what you did?
And what do you think of past enemies like my brother?
Are Communists still repugnant to you? Or are merely mis-guided?
As I say I am only curious. Your story is a remarkable one. I am an optimist in life.
People can change and as I say I congratulate you.
But, it would be nice to hear from you.
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