Friday, July 21, 2006

Blackrock Essay

We're studying a play entitled Blackrock in English, and had to write an essay about who bears responsibility for the events (a young girl is raped and subsequently murdered.)

Responsibility for the tragic events which occured in the small town of Blackrock can be attributed to multiple factors. Jared, Ricko the actual perpetrators in question, as well as the town itself, are all catalysts that caused the rape and murder of Tracy Warner.

Although in a physical sense, Jared didn’t directly instigate the crime, he certainly could’ve prevented it, or provided assistance in finding the felons. When Jared took leave of the rave party being held in the local surf club to take a stroll on his own, what he saw would change his fate forever. As he sat atop a rocky crag, silent and thoughtful, he gazed upon the pristine sands and the frothing, swaying waves. But when he did, his eyes caught sight of something horrible; a rape in progress. As he watched what began innocently enough, or at least innocently by Blackrock standards, he saw the situation degrade into something much worse. He sat there, shocked and in horror, yet failing to respond, to react, to cease the crime. It would have taken nothing to stop it, yet he didn’t. It was at this point that Jared became intertwined with the threads of the crime, and he only served to push himself deeper into the mud the next morning. His mother, waking him up, quizzed him about what had occurred: ‘What time did you leave that party?’ Jared could think of nothing but to return to the sweet embrace of slumber. Upon hearing what had happened, his immediate reaction was not sympathy, or grief, but instead he began aggressively defending himself, even blaming Tracy for her own demise. At this point, he could have revealed what had happened. He could have told the police what he saw, who he saw, but he opted not to. Jared, for much of the play, tries desperately to avoid the problem he effectively created himself, but to no avail; it is not up until the end that he reveals the identity of the offenders, and it is all but too late. He made his choice between justice and mateship, but is a choice that should have been made when he was sitting atop the rock watching Tracy being brutally raped by Scott, Davo and Toby.

The most potent factor of all the driving forces behind what amalgamated to cause this crime was the actual rapists themselves; Scott, Davo and Toby. These young individuals, throwing their life away in an instant, took turns violating an innocent girl like her existence was worth nothing. If it weren’t for the actions of these three individuals most of all, perhaps the town of Blackrock would have remained the sleepy, calm and secluded beach town it once was. But instead, they made the worst decision of their life which would leave the worst scar on Blackrock in it’s history. In their selfish quest for thrills, they violently and guiltlessly forced a girl to have unconsented sex with them, and it is through this that they are the single most responsible individuals for the events that occur in the book than all others combined. But, it wasn’t only the fault of these three; Ricko, upon finding the bleeding girl in pain, took advantage of her current state. As he tried to tarnish her one more time, she retaliated, and Ricko struck her with a rock to defend himself. It was at this point, that Tracy Warner died, and the town of Blackrock would soon find out.

There is a final party in this terrible sequence of events that should bear some of the responsibility for what occurred, and that is the town itself. Before Tracy’s death, Blackrock was the kind of town where everyone is friends, the kind of town that no one has even heard of, another little road-stop on the way to somewhere greater. It’s the kind of town where the kids who live there can’t wait to get out, where the lifestyle is surfing, drinking, and of course, chicks. Due to its isolation and it’s disconnectedness with the modern world in many ways, Blackrock suddenly suffers a massive shock after the incident. Nothing like this has ever happened before in that town. Police are questioning, the media are chasing the residents like vultures, and fingers are pointed in all directions. There are claims of, ‘she was a slut,’ and the chastising of those who try to honour her memory. It is obvious that everyone knows something, yet no one in the town steps forth to present the information. The perpetrators, and everyone else, try to live their life like there is no blood on their hands, and no corpse in the ground. It is in this way that the town is responsible for the events of the play.

In closing, there was no single force behind what occurred. It was caused by a combination of issues that culminated in the rape and murder of Tracy Warner, including the town, the perpetrators, and Jared, but no matter the cause, it was certainly a night that Blackrock would never forget.

By James Ritchie