Can a single heroic act be taken in isolation, and mean that you be feted for that bravery? Or should any recognition be dependent on a wider analysis of your character and actions?
You could construct a compelling case for Roy Larner, the ‘Lion of London Bridge’, to be a recipient of a gallantry award for taking on the armed jihadis who struck at London Bridge on June 3 last year. More than 23,000 people thought so, signing a petition for him to be awarded a George Cross.
Equally you could argue that someone who was subsequently convicted of racially-aggravated common assault and religiously-aggravated harassment should not be honoured with such recognition.
Roy only avoided prison through a suspended sentence, after shouting racist abuse at a protester and then launching into a racist outburst at MP Neil Coyle’s office.
Six of one, half a dozen of the other – how would you feel if you were the victim of Roy’s abuse and saw him receiving an award, or how would you feel if he had helped to save your life at London Bridge and saw him miss out?
Whatever people’s views, we deserve a clear explanation. The Cabinet Office told us this week that it could not comment on individual cases, but it should make its decision-making process clear. Was Roy nominated or not?