People, Priorities and Casey Anthony

People and their priorities are often a curiosity to me.  I always have struggled to understand the popularity of selected, tragic current events.  How can anyone forget the heart wrenching stories of Natalie Holloway or Elizabeth Smart? The riveting story of the day is the Casey Anthony trial and the untimely loss of her young daughter, Caylee.  As disturbing as these events might be, even more disturbing to me is how the media flames the fires of suspense and the public willing watches.

The disturbing aspect is not so much that the public is being entertained by the tragedy of others but that there is a far greater tragedy that receives little media attention and sparse public following.  As of this writing, the Anthony trial has been in session for 35 days and the nation’s attention has been focused on the very unfortunate circumstance of little Caylee Anthony’s death.  It is high suspense, drama and entertainment – to some.

What is not high drama is the fact that during those 35 days, over 100 children under the age of 14 have been murdered, 70 of them under the age of five.  What does it say about our society that we devote so much time and so many resources to one, isolated case?  Are we that starved for entertainment that it obscures the greater problem that should be addressed?  Apparently so.

The Anthony trial would have progressed to its conclusion without the lens of the media and the rabid following of the public. What could be accomplished if that level of effort and interest had been spent on the greater problem of the maltreatment of children?  Maybe, just maybe, instead of 100 children being murdered during the time the trial has been in session there might have been 99.  Wouldn’t that have been worth it? One child?

My cynical side says that many trial followers would not want to be bothered with that particular reality, especially since closing arguments are tomorrow.  What can one person do?  Resolution begins with awareness followed by action.

Action can be sending an email to your preferred news outlet making them aware of the disproportionate coverage of Anthony. Action can be asking that media outlet to do a series on child homicides. Action can be making a donation to one of the many child welfare organizations. Action could be as simple as switching channels and not enabling the media-hyped, entertainment trials.

Let’s face it, the reason there is so much media coverage of the Anthony trial is because it gets viewers and ratings.  Ratings mean advertising dollars.  If no one is watching then the advertising isn’t there and the media wouldn’t cover it.  It’s just a business decision. Don’t just be a spectator- take some action.  In this instance, individuals can make a difference.  It’s fine to remember Caylee but let’s not forget the ones that might still be saved.

Should you need any more motivattion consider the following table of homicides in 2007 derived from CDC data:

Age

Male

Female

Total

0-4

419

331

750

5-9

66

67

133

10-14

144

69

213

1096

Data Sources:

http://www.cdc.gov/NCHS/data/nvsr/nvsr58/nvsr58_19.pdf
http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/su6001a14.htm?s_cid=su6001a14_w
http://wisqars.cdc.gov:8080/nvdrs/nvdrsDisplay.jsp

Additional Information:

CDC Child Maltreatment Prevention:
http://www.cdc.gov/ViolencePrevention/childmaltreatment/

Child Welfare Information Gateway:
http://www.childwelfare.gov/systemwide/statistics/can.cfm

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6 thoughts on “People, Priorities and Casey Anthony

  1. There was a little girl that was murdered several years ago in my town. I believe she was around 8 or 9 years old. I did not know the little girl or her family, but my husband and I were at a cookout less than a mile from her home when it happened. I have never nor will I ever forget her and what happened to her. To this day no real charges has been brought against her killer. My sister and Mother are buried near her and every time I visit the cemetery, I go to her grave and say a prayer. Rest in peace little one…God has you now.

  2. What a tragic story. I hope that sharing your memory of her and how you will never forget will help others who have not had your direct experience realize that children can be vulnerable anywhere. Thank you for taking the time to share. I don’t know the little girl’s name but she is now in my thoughts too.

  3. Your point is well taken. In the end; you will find, it isn’t about advertising dollars. It is all about stealing the one definition of democracy we kling too. They always need something to attract our attention each time they put a piece of the puzzle into place. We preach a one man, one vote, majority rule doctrine. Unfortunately, we practice a money is power, he who has the gold makes the rule philosphy. Heaven forbid; we demand that business, politicians, and the American people abandon what’s in it for me ( W.I.I.F.M.) dogma, and collectively do what is right for this country. We must demand a conversation in terms of WE. Years of programming us to empower what some would call the secret society, would be shot to hell. It just may be that the society isn’t so secret anymore. The luminatti may be luminated. Now is the right time to start looking at things in terms of US. Forget personal, political, and corporate gain and let this great country of ours benefit, heal, and maintain it’s rightful status in the world. Our soldiers put it on the line every day, and lose life and / or limb. We all need to put our ideas and our money where our mouths are. Stop focusing on one group and focus on one nation!!!! “SOMETIMES WE HAVE TO PAY WHAT WE OWE!”

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