Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Fear City

This was the headline of the latest paper. It seems I am not alone in my nervous state, if the testimonies are anything to go by.

The fear is heightened lately because this month is officiall exams month. 574 000 kids, spread over 4 different grades, are taking state tests all month. The department of education had to change exam locals at the last minute because those buildings were too close to the action. Or the bad guys (the BGs, let's call them) were directly targeting them.

Yes, you read right. School kids are still being victimized in this mess. Some 12th graders have already had their exam passes (without which they cannot get in to take the tests) torn by armed BGs. The government intervened and those kids were able to get new passes asap. I know parents who've taken the week off just to make sure the kids are safe. For what it's worth, anyway.

Kidnapping victims were also in the news. They've started telling their stories. This one woman was kidnapped by mistake, not the first time this has happened. Except she was "stolen" by a second group of captors so her family had to pay the ransom twice to get her back. They hit her in the face and kidneys so she would cry out when they called the parents. More impressive that way, you know.

Another tells of dismembered body parts, supposedly of those whose relatives couldn't come up with the money. Of course, this serves as a warning to the newly kidnapped. Get us the cash fast or it's chop chop for you.

Feeling nauseous? I am.

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