In recent months many people have taken to social media to bring attention to the alarming rate of missing girls of African and Latina descent. As social media campaigns to find our girls have trended and caused an increase in articles and editorials about this tragic phenomena, the lack of police and mass media attention to this issue has become more evident. While this issue has been discussed by a multitude of writers and major publications since March, the focus on finding our missing girls is beginning to dwindle or shift over time.
Shifts in the focus on finding our girls include a concentration on discrepancies about the number of missing girls in metropolitan cities including but not limited to Washington, D.C. along with other shifts in conversation, which in essence, do not negate the fact that there are alarming numbers of missing girls- even one missing girl should still alarm the consciousness’s of the proletariat, law enforcement, and mass media entities. Many articles and analyses of this disparity focus on the historical and theoretical underpinnings behind the lack of mass media and law enforcement attention for missing Black and Latina girls in the U.S. inclusive of racism, lack of value, presuppositions about such girls, etc. What is of equal importance to revealing the ugly theoretical and historical truths of this disparity, however, is identifying things that we can do as a public to aid in the process of getting more or even proper media attention for our missing Black and Latina girls on a grand scale. Thus, here are a few ways in which we can become active in the fight to provide coverage for our missing girls:
- We can continue the conversation both on and off social media- let’s keep the names of our girls present in lieu of their physical absence. Saying their names keeps them alive in spirit and in the realms of media and law.
- We can familiarize ourselves with the names and faces of our missing girls so that they can be recognized should any one of us encounter them.
- We can interact with media outlets and legal entities both via social media and otherwise in order to urge them not to forget about our girls.
- We can educate ourselves and more specifically our children (both girls and boys) on this topic so that they can remain vigilant in their daily lives and so that they too can be cognizant of this topic both as it applies to their lives and that of others.
This is not an exhaustive list of all that we can do to gain mass media converge and legal attention in the cases of missing Black and Latina girls, so readers should feel free to expand this list as one sees fit; what’s most important is that we aid in some facet to the fight to find our girls while urging our media and law enforcement to contribute to the fight as well.