On Saturday 6th September, Carnival Day, Belize was forced to bid farewell to the peaceful stage of her development. Whereas before we were treated to occasional scenes of gratuitous violence in between updates of Zenaida's latest hijinks, and whereas we have heard of grenades on the street before, this was an entirely new level of horror.
The fact that someone thought it a good idea to toss a grenade into crowds of parents and children gathered to watch a parade speaks to the kind of monster our culture has unknowingly nurtured. And sadly, our forces are ill-equipped to deal with this new order of battle. After all, we did not realize these possibilities, did we?
Before Carnival Day and what might have been, we still retained a small portion of the innocence we once had in abundance. We still had a little faith left. But to hear our leaders and security forces speak of doing bomb sweeps prior to an event, to hear them mention what will have to be done for parade security, leaves a sadness, a kind of weariness, as we mourn for what did die on Saturday.
We all used to be able to brag about how safe Belize was, how our leaders could travel without bodyguards, how we didn't have the problems of other nations. Well, now we do.
So what next?