Following the monumental turnout for the 2017 Women’s March in Washington D.C., it is very clear to see, America is in position to have an open dialogue concerning gender-based conflicts.
Yet, this raises the question, why are we ignoring the missing black and latinx girls who are going missing in Washington D.C.?
Days preceding the march, there was a large outcry from women of color (WOC) who felt as if the march wasn’t very inclusive of intersecting areas like, race and culture.
One supporter stated, “The march was sanitized in a way, it didn’t challenge white [women] privilege, and was media sanctioned.”
Some believe that these missing girls weren’t seen as a focal point in most coverage because story didn’t align with the context of white women “feminism.” Rather it challenges it, and “makes white women put their privilege into context.”
Comparing this to the media sensation surrounding the disappearance of white women like Natalee Ann Holloway, in 2005, these black and latinx girls are nearly invisible to white America.
Women like Maya Angelique Moody, posted a thread on Twitter, based on her experience at the march. It was on the treatment of WOC from a handful of white women.
“It annoys me how many ww claimed to be marching ‘in solidarity’ for all women,” she wrote, “but sit silently and idly by while black and other woc are discriminated against, harassed, kidnapped, raped and killed.”
I'm glad everyone came out to protest today, it was fun and really nice, but I'm annoyed.
— Maya Angelique (@MayaAMonroe) January 22, 2017
Events concerning the matter, like the one in the D.C Town Hall, depicted a room, of concerned citizens, who majorly consisted of African Americans.
— DC Maryland Virginia (@DMVFollowers) March 23, 2017
Those meetings have been essential for the community to inform and educate their residents about the disappearances.
However, the community feels that this matter is not receiving enough coverage or support from their own authorities, as DC City Councilmember Trayon White openly stated in a media interview.
“What the community is alarmed about — we had a 10-year-old girl missing the other day, but there was no amber alert,” White said.
“We just feel like, you know, if this was a white person or from another neighborhood, there would be more alarm about it.”
“(A)ny time you have a 10-year-old missing for any amount of hours and no one knows where he or she is, that is rules for immediate attention, that’s an alert that needs to be sent out,” White added. “Because the more time that goes past, the less likely we are to find him or her.”
Yet this does not excuse those currently acknowledging the matter either. Many online sources, namely social media sites, have developed and shared misleading information.
These falsifications and bits of inaccurate pieces are helping create awareness of the matter, but dilute the overall process taken to help find these innocent victims.
According to the Metropolitan Police Department, and Washington D.C. officials, there have been nearly 500 reported incidents of missing black and latinx adolescents in 2017, with these numbers being in a decline.
“The Truth is the number of missing Young Girls is declining in Washington and our police Department closes most cases quickly.” – Washington DC Mayor’s Office
Unfortunately, this information seems to clash with that of annual statistics, which depict a steady stream of cases from the years of 2014 to 2016.
Visibility will always be welcomed, while inaccuracies, and fraudulent media, only serves to mislead the overall goal to save these black and latinx kids.