Sunday, January 25, 2004

More About Ivona Lalić (Ivona Lalic)

The killing took place in Tesla Street – part of Split with the highest concentration of educational institutions. Primary school is next to six high schools and three university departments. That means that the street is crowded with hundreds of pupils and students, ages ranging from 6 to 26 years, especially around 13 and 19 hours when classes end.

In good old days, when students used only buses or their feet as means of transportation, that wasn't the problem. But today too many Croatians, especially those with high incomes, see cars and motorcycles as the best substitute for proper parental care and equip their teen children with BMWes and Alfa Romeos. Needless to say, when those children happen to be male, they are forced to display their vehicular capacities in front of their female classmates. They usually do it by parking in front of school, making street much narrower.

Sometimes those people don't have to be students at all. Sometimes they wouldn't set foot near any school, but they must impress their girlfriends. And drug dealers are also said to drive there in order to fill the needs of Croatian youth. Due to many reasons I feel too depressed to elaborate, both categories are unlikely to worry about traffic police.

Some time ago, after urging from school authorities, road barriers were set on the one side of street. One night they disappeared and whoever did that obviously had access to heavy equipment and people with engineering ability and experience. Someone very powerful or very rich made sure that cars can drive through Tesla Street without any problem.

And even those barriers couldn't stop the motorcycles, including the one driven by 22-year old Jurica Torlak, who, according to Slobodna Dalmacija, didn't show any sign of remorse while being questioned by investigating magistrate. What happened on Thursday wasn't the first time. Motorcycles were speeding through that narrow street before and there were accidents, leaving students with serious injuries. Nobody did anything about it, at least nobody powerful and influential enough to make a difference. I doubt that this tragedy would change a thing – it will make people angry, there would be couple of newspaper articles but soon convenient excuses would be found for this case to be forgotten and those responsible forgiven for their crime.


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