It would be impossible not to be stunned by last night’s massacre in Bartica, Guyana especially as it somes so soon after the chilling events in Lusignan only a few weeks ago. Here in Trinidad we have become somewhat inured to death and killing given our disturbing murder rate. Those of us who work in news are even more hardened to the daily reality of murder but the events of the last 24 hours were disturbing to all of us at ieTV. Death is a fact of life but when it happens on such a large scale and in such a brutal and chilling way it is disturbing.
Guyana is a large and wild country with a small population spread across a great swath of land so to be honest, even the best policing would have a hard time preventing such carnage. It is sad that a band of deranged criminals cake can shake the psyche of a nation and a region. The events in Guyana are a reminder of the thin line that all societies walk between civility and anarchy. I suppose we have traditionally looked to Africa for such examples of carnage. Rwanda and the current crisis in Darfur are horrifying examples of what happens when evil elements start to rip apart the fabric of civilized society. My thoughts are with the people of Guyana and the Guyanese community worldwide.
At time like this we all want to do something and yet most of us are powerless. Those of us in the media are fortunate that we can at least provide information to the public. It doesn’t make the horror go away but people want to know – it is part of the human condition. ieTv has sent our crew to Guyana to work with our contacts there to try and get as much information as we can for our viewers. It is, of course, costing us a bit of money and, given we are a smaller station, takes a bit of a bite out of our news budget, but we feel it is important for the information to be known and the best way to do that is to be on the ground.
As a blogger I felt it was imperative to do what the internet allows best; to get information out as quickly as possible. My WordPress blog was devoted to disseminating information to the public as quickly as I could get it. I like the way the internet is able to fill a gap between TV and print. Anyone concerned about what was happening could just Google the subject and find any number of sites ( including my blog) providing information on demand. Even knowing that I am still shocked at the number of hits my site on WordPress got today. Monitoring the traffic as I type this there have been 200 hits in the last 2 hours. A testament to the power of the internet and the public’s need to know.
I had not expected such a demand but I will certainly continue to use this blog for news purposes whenever the need arises.