Thursday, January 26, 2012

Dear Ian Somerhalder Missing Black People Are More Important Than Cats

I know that I said that I was taking a sick day, but I came across something on twitter that angered me so much that I was forced to write a post.



Anyone following Ian Somerhalder on twitter will quickly discover that he has a passion for animals and the environment.  He is constantly tweeting to raise awareness or to encourage funding for various groups that deal with either the environment or animals.  Obviously, these are extremely necessary and worthy causes.  In fact most would be hard pressed to see where this kind of activism falls short.

Somerhadler recently linked to a cat slaying in Arkansas.
This past week, The Washington Post’s Marc Fisher attacked this country’s great media divide. He embedded with South Carolinians of differing political viewpoints and tracked their divergent news diets. “There’s more campaign news and commentary out there than ever before,” writes Fisher, “but more and more citizens are tucking themselves inside information silos where they see mainly what they already agree with.”

For further evidence of this phenomenon, try pumping “liberal dead cat arkansas” into Google News. Those search terms fetch a chilling and apparently partisan story from Russellville, Ark. The skinny is this: Jacob Burris, the campaign manager for Arkansas Democratic congressional candidate Ken Aden, found his family’s cat slain in front of his house, the word “liberal” painted on its dead body. (source)
Obviously this crime is heinous and represents a break of trust between humanity and animals.  I was in complete agreement with Somerhalder's desire to raise awareness until I read the following:

At this moment, my blood began to boil.  He expects police officers to seriously investigate this matter, and then even went as far as to promise to start his own investigation, if they didn't follow through.  Gee, whatever could be wrong with Ian dedicating himself to hunting down a cat murderer because of police neglect?  Well, I will tell you what the problem is. At this moment, there are literally hundreds, if not thousands of missing people of color whom the police in their infinite wisdom have not bothered to investigate. When a White child goes missing, the amber alert flashes, and the media reports on the missing child repeatedly.  The blonder and prettier the child, the more likely that the alarm bell will ring.  Obviously, these categories specifically exclude children and women of colour.
 
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