A Shooting In Ottawa

Yesterday, a gunman murdered an unarmed soldier guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Ottawa, then proceeded to shoot up Parliament itself before being killed by one of the Parliamentary constables. The city was in crisis, and parts of it –including the University of Ottawa– were in lockdown. I had just stepped off a plane, but took the time to record some observations from downtown, as I live a a few blocks from where the events had occurred. In this episode, I observe the tone of the city and the university campus during the lockdown.

I cannot stress enough that this podcast was not recorded to ghoulishly consider the tragic murder of one young man. Rather, it is meant as an exploration of the nature of civic response to such an emergency. As such, I took pains to avoid filming or even seeing the murder site, preferring instead to observe the reactions and behaviours of the everyday people in the neighbourhood.

An armed officer walking toward the shooting scene
An armed officer walking toward the shooting scene
As close as you can get to the shooting site. Here is where all the reporters were clustered.
As close as you can get to the shooting site. Here is where all the reporters were clustered.
The door to our admin office... behind which several people waited quietly in the dark.
The door to our admin office… behind which several people waited quietly in the dark.