October 7, 2022

The crime scene photos of a female cadaver taken on Aug. 30 that were irresponsibly posted on social media and shared by equally irresponsible netizens showed how the urge to be the first to break information in this digital age has clouded the judgment and stripped the compassion of a lot of people.

The incident is surely not the first heinous crime to have happened in Baguio, a city known for its peace-loving and respectful people, aside from being a safe place to study, live, and do business in.

This is why the manner by which people on social media have disseminated the photos of the female cadaver found in a private compound at Alfonso Tabora, Trancoville left us questioning where our compassion decency have gone.

Already, the death of a loved one, a relative, a friend, or even an acquaintance is dreadful. How much more if the passing is sudden; more so, gruesome?

We can only sympathize with the victim’s family who must be agonizing by now. They must be traumatized by the tragedy that befell their loved one, made worse by the lack of decency, respect, and sympathy of netizens who shared the photos of the victim without the slightest intention to conceal the body’s private parts.

Even in death, the dignity of human beings must be preserved.

It is the Filipino’s culture to do everything to give their dead a decent funeral and employ means to protect their memory. These basic moral obligations were breached, totally disregarded in the case of the female cadaver.

It is unfortunate that in this digital age where everyone is constantly on a race to be the first to share information on social media, people have disregarded logic and have forgotten the values that make them human beings.

Humanity is lost when instead of sharing crime stories to inform the public and warn them to be careful, it is done in a manner that leaves the people enraged, their sensibilities offended, or worse, their mental health disturbed.

Whenever a crime is committed, everyone is affected since peace is disturbed.

It is everybody’s responsibility therefore to inform others about a crime, petty or not, to warn them to be vigilant; but this must be done responsibly so as not to cause undue panic and trigger anxiety problems.

The victim is gone and she left a grieving family behind. Family members are the ones who are affected the most; and they will have to continue on with life while dealing with the trauma left by the awful experience of losing a loved one whose death became a social media spectacle.

We share the call of groups, local officials, and authorities for Baguio residents to stop the irresponsible sharing of photos of victims of crimes on social media. This, at the very least, is what we can do to condole with the grieving family.

As law enforcement agencies continue their probe to bring justice for the victim and her family, let us remain vigilant and help make the city remain a peaceful place by cultivating the culture of care, empathy, and respect, which the people of Baguio are known for.