The recent inncident with Urvashi and other Journalists in the past made me reflect on how Trinis see the message and the messenger. Of course, it is nothing new… for centuries it has always been that if you did not like the message you would simply kill the messenger. Also, the differences between a journalist and a reporter seem to be misunderstood. My question here, do you feel journalists in T&T are given an unfair wrap considering that they do act as one of the groups that bring to light some of the things that may be hidden from the public's eye? This should not be taken lightly.
The issue here is that the political landscape overpowers social media. There are people being paid to just come to Facebook and other social media platforms to stir drama, to attack, to defend the indefensible and to plant seeds of division among the population. Divide and conquer, it is a political game and all parties involved play it very well.
We have a very colonial mentality/approach to ALL aspects of our lives including how we perceive journalism.
A journalist asking a question to unfold a particular issue that lacks transparency is automatically labelled as "Blasted disrespectful" to "Our leaders" or as someone put it the other day "Blasted disrespectful to the Lord's chosen anointed to lead this nation!".
The country behaves like we are all back in primary school and we are never, ever under any circumstance dare to ask the teacher for anything. People quickly and (Conveniently for those having an agenda) forget that politicians are NOT beyond reproach and journalists ARE the watch dogs for society and they MUST ask the difficult questions.
But when they attempt to do so, they are attacked and ridicule and as someone stated on Facebook about Urvashi "Sit in a corner put yuh finger on yuh lips and learn to behave."
I'm afraid there is no hope because people DO want things to remain as it is, therefore it is not surprising why journalists are treated this way. Looks a lot like Venezuela and just the start of a clear dictatorship.
That is what happens in a polarized country where they cannot see beyond one way or the other. Someone was recently asking me what is happening with journalists in T&T that brought up this question so just to explain… Basically, when certain journalists ask questions that make the person being asked uncomfortable they become the target of trolling and bullying by one side of the political divide even if that question is in the public interest. On the other had some journalists allegedly are also clearly working on an agenda either because they have policies that they are under or fear for their ability to have continued employment.