Wednesday, August 3, 2011
IT'S DANGEROUS TO BE A GIRL
Celina Cass, age 11, was found this week in a river in New Hampshire, not far from her home. The search for her has consumed the TV screens this week. The police are still investigating and will no doubt unravel this horrific crime. The culprit will be arrested and brought to justice.
It would be bad enough if Celina were the only statistic this year, but she represents THOUSANDS of missing girls. Her picture has been on the TV channels and her town has come out enmasse to search for her. MOST little girls don't have that kind of support from the media or their community. They just go missing, and a few family members grieve and get angry and live out the rest of their empty lives wondering "what happened?"
The many studies by law enforcement and focus groups bring new numbers almost daily and they are staggering. Celina's story is one of THOUSANDS in the United States.
Yes, it is dangerous to be a girl in America. Bigger, stronger, and very evil adults have the upper hand, literally! Often it's a family member that betrays their trust, sometimes a family friend, and once in a while it's a stranger. Force, fraud and coercion are the tools they use.
We have shouted "stranger danger" for years ignoring the very real "relationship danger" aspect. Dads, uncles, brothers, friends of babysitters and sometimes boyfriends of mom are the very people that live near and have access to vulnerable and helpless little girls. The crime crosses all socio-economic groups and hides behind public pretense. Because of their age little girls are not certain when they should shout "HELP." Family loyalties keep them silent, too.
Every DAY there are several articles in the Tulsa World about harm done to a child. This week a mother goes to trial for placing her tiny baby girl in a washing machine and turning it on. A principle from a nearby town has been arrested for abusing a little girl and murdering a boy! It goes on and on!
It makes me want to build a gilded cage, put my grandchildren inside it and then put a lid on. I have oftened wondered what I would do if one of my granddaughters were harmed. Forgiveness would be impossible and I'm sure I would demand or even administer justice, and willingly go to jail or even death row for my crime.
How do we protect our children without scaring them to death or causing such paranoia that they're afraid to live and enjoy life?
How do we warn them without taking away their childhood?
How did we get to this place in our history?
Why or how could ANYONE harm a child?
Celina's story is a reminder that EVIL exists.
How does a nation confront EVIL?
Maybe one home at a time. I wonder if someone knew Celina was in some kind of danger before she went missing and for whatever reason decided to NOT speak up.