Being a reporter means you have to be informed and educated. A good reporter knows about history, culture and current events in the world.
Today, we learned about the history of Belfast. During our cab tour throughout the neighborhood communities, we learned about the violent conflict between the Catholics and the Protestants. This Peace Wall was built in the 1970’s to end the “ethnic conflict” between the two groups. Throughout Belfast’s history, there have been over 3,000 deaths in the streets between the two communities. Our tour guide today said that the Peace Wall helped stop the violence in the streets. Today, the wall gates still close at night to keep young teens who are up to no good from entering the other side and causing trouble. Young people are also known to throw rocks over the gate at the houses. Therefore, houses on the other side have a sort of cage between the house and the wall to protect against the thrown stones. What was interesting is that the main hospital of Northern Ireland is located on the Catholic side and the gates do not open for ambulances or people on the Protestant side at night. The tour guide said that if someone were to have a heart attack on the Protestant side, they would have to drive around the entire city and around the wall to get to the hospital, which seems dangerous to me.
We all got to sign the wall with markers, which was pretty cool.
In other news, last night there was a terrorist attack in Manchester, London at an Ariana Grade concert. Many young lives were lost, including an eight year-old girl who attended the concert with her mother and her sister. My friends and I went to a nightclub the night this happened and when we got back to the hotel we saw on the news that there was a bomb at that concert which shocked us all.