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August 04, 2005
The Question some of us are still asking...

I went looking for Latoyia Figueroa coverage tonight on Technorati, and found 300+ Post. The effort to help find this missing mother is still going strong in some quarters, but pales in comparison with the nearly 5000 on Natalee Holloway.

This post from Rob's Blog sort of says it all for me:

We hear all about Laci Peterson, we get daily updates on Natalee Holloway, back before her body was found we got inundated with news about Chandra Levy.

Ever heard of Latoyia Figueroa? Probably not. Seems she doesn't fit the mainstream media's "this will sell papers and get people to watch us on the tube" model.

From Wired, we learn of a blogger effort to raise awareness of the pregnant mother of one who has been missing since mid-July. While any missing persons case is sad, it's interesting what cases get big national attention...what made Holloway so special that her case gets coverage on par with the death of kings and the war in Iraq, while Latoyia gets "section B" coverage?

So what are we going to do. Will the search for Latoyia just turn into a momentary fad? I hope not. I pray daily for Natalee Holloway, and hope that by the grace of God she is found safely, but there is room out there for another story about a missing woman, a mother... And we should not lose site of this.

Posted by David A at 01:44 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 236 Words
July 31, 2005
The Haters and Latoyia
"My point is that this is not national news by any measure. As I've said elsewhere, this woman's best friend says she could have been harmed by any one of the scores of guys by whom she's getting long stroked. This is a woman who leads a dangerous and unconventional lifestyle in a high crime area, and is now missing--big surprise. The Natalee Holloway case, by contrast, is national news because it involves a beautiful, articulate young girl who received a full scholarship to college who turns up missing at an island beach resort where there has been 1 murder in all of 2004. Big, big difference. The radical bedwetters picked the wrong case to make their point and used really poor judgment.

POSSIBLE SUSPECTS: Baby Fatha No. 1; Baby Fatha No. 2.; Guys she's messing wit (see best friend of LaToyia to try to narrow the field); Other woman pregnant by Baby Fatha No. 2 who kicked LaToyia in pregnant stomach.

Do you not want to throw-up from this garbage. These people live like savages and then you sit here being an apologist for them saying they deserve "MORE" news coverage. Are you kidding me?


"Neither of them (LaToyia or Baby Fatha No. 2) had the money to pay the $35 insurance co-pay (to check the baby's health), so they left the hospital and drove back to southwest Philadelphia, police said.

Before heading back to his place, the pair stopped off for some fried food at a seafood-takeout restaurant."

"So, they didn't have enough money collectively to pay for a $35 co-pay, so they decided to get down on some greasy fish sticks and fries. This makes my point. Nothing that happens with these irresponsible people, in this war zone of a neighborhood, should surprise anyone. Hence, it's not national news."

Commenter Michael in comments to this post.

Congratulations Mike! At least you managed to avoid pointing out the Natalee is white. Other than that, you basically said that because Latoyia allegedly lived a lifestyle that you don't approve of, that her value as a human being, and that of her unborn child, who has no "record," alleged or otherwise, is somehow less important than Natalee's.

That is a crock.

EVERY Life has value, and this is not just about Latoyia and Natalee. It is about a sad record by the Major Media of covering infinitum, cases involving attractive white girls and women, while ignoring missing minorities.

Frankly some of your comments are extremely racist in nature:

"So, they didn't have enough money collectively to pay for a $35 co-pay, so they decided to get down on some greasy fish sticks and fries. This makes my point. Nothing that happens with these irresponsible people, in this war zone of a neighborhood, should surprise anyone. Hence, it's not national news."

There is a big difference between $35 for poor people, and $10 worth of fast food. But that is not the point... "These irresponsible people?" Please... What the hell is that supposed to mean?

Finally, why does it upset you so much that Bloggers are trying to help this person and her family?

You make comments about how press interviews with Latoyia's father were embarrassing to minorities.

You spoke about how illiterate he was.... Did you see the interview with the Dad of the little girl from Florida, who was raped and murdered by a child molester a while back? I did not see the interview with Latoyia's father, but I would guess that he was no more illiterate than that little girl's father. Did you see that interview and think, "Jesus, this guy is making all us White Folk look bad?" What I saw was a father in great pain, and I hurt for him, just as I hurt for the Parents of Natalee and Latoyia.

There is room in the National Press for both of these Young Women. Get off your high horse and either help or shut up and let those who want to, to do so.

Posted by David A at 12:56 PM | Comments (19) | TrackBack (0) | 676 Words
July 30, 2005
Eh... I don't get this?

I get a trackback from a blogger today who seems to be a bit upset that Bloggers are concerned about finding Latoyia Figueroa.

This in particular stood out in the post:

The whiner-groaner-bloggers continue to try to make Laytoyia as prominent in the media's eye as Natalee Holloway:

He goes on to analyze the motives of bloggers blogging on behalf of Latoyia, making the claim it seems that some bloggers are "racializing the issue." He goes on to reference a very good post which mentions how some bloggers are comparing the Natalee Halloway story to Latoyia and ridiculing the efforts of those concerned about Natalee. Fair enough. I have been guilty of this myself.

But for anyone, as he does, to imagine that there is NOT a huge disparity on how cases involving "pretty white girls," as opposed to missing minority women, is simply ridiculous. Like the vast majority of people, I pray that Natalee will come home safely, or that her abductors will be brought to justice. But it is entirely appropriate to call the media on the carpet for how they handle these cases.

I remember the Story of Pvt. Jessica Lynch, the cute little Southern White Girl who was captured in Iraq, and how she was all but made a National Hero, while a less attractive Black woman, was being held and abused at the same time, and received a fraction of the attention by the media. Likewise the Elizabeth Smart story dominated the news for over a year, at the same time minority children were going missing or being murdered or abused all across America.

The post goes on to say:

NPR has taken note the Bloggers are Blogging about Latoyia, but they've also chosen to display the more culturally-charming "white" photo of Latoyia... you can See the Photo, Hear the NPR Report HERE

Listen to the NPR report, and then check out this NPR piece.

I don't think any decent person would deny the Halloway family the support they have gotten for their missing daughter. But to stick our heads in the sand and pretend that racism does not exist, or worse, to turn around and attack those who are trying to get an equal level of public awareness for Latoyia is not only disengenious, but it is hateful.

Oh and Dave... I don't think there is a Bloggers conspiracy to post white looking, or black looking, pictures. That assessment on your part probably speaks more to your own racial attitudes than any "Reality Check." When I wrote my first post, I simply placed the first picture I found of her.

Posted by David A at 11:22 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0) | 442 Words
July 29, 2005
So Much for Natalee, so little for Latoyia!

Keep Latoyia in the news:

I found this on iFlipflop today:

I copied Howard's post directly from Philly Future, where he started this thread about Latoyia Figueroa last week. Please help out on your site if you can. And help find Latoyia Figueroa:

When the news of Latoyia Figueroa's disapperance first made it onto the Philly Future front page last week, she was a relatively anonymous missing person. Unfortunately, she is still both relatively anonymous and missing. That's the continuing sad truth of the matter.

The hopeful news is that, thanks to local bloggers like Richard at All Spin Zone, and those who've followed his lead, her name is starting to get out, and hopefully her face has a greater chance of being seen by someone who may be able to help find her. Richard's post on Latoyia has been picked up by Evan Derkacz at Alternet.

Richard asks, and we echo his request, for all Philly area bloggers to put the word out on their blogs about Latoyia Figueroa, who's been missing for over a week now. Include a picture of her. Even if you only get one visitor a day, every little bit helps raise awareness of this missing Philadelphia woman, who is not only five months pregnant, but also has a seven-year-old waiting for her at home.

Another course of action Richard has suggested is to write an email to Nancy Grace

at CNN, who has provided wall-to-wall coverage of missing teenager
Natalee Holloway. In a world where only the white-skinned, blond-haired
young women seem to be missed by the mainstream media, these are some
ways to help bring Latoyia's story a little attention too.

UPDATE: CNN is covering the story.

If this story does not get more attention, the hypocrisy of the media in dealing with missing women will be MORE than apparent. Yes, by all means write to Nancy Grace, America's Most Wanted, Larry King, anyone who can help keep this story in the news.

Posted by David A at 07:33 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack (1) | 335 Words
July 28, 2005
Missing Pregnant Woman!

I guess I have been away from the news too much the last few days! I found this on Great Scat. It will be interesting to see if this story gets the attention that Natalee Halloway has gotten.

Latoyia Figueroa Reward Fund - You Can Help

Visit the All Spin Zone for details. Read the story here
at cnn, thanks to Richard from ASZ. Even if you're unable to
contribute, let's all pitch in and help keep this story out there until
Latoyia is found. Kudos to you Richard, and also to Atrios. Both Philly bloggers who wouldn't let this story stay in the shadows.

I hope that other bloggers will pick this one up!

And make sure you read this and this.

Technorati Tag: Latoyia Figueroa

Posted by David A at 12:43 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | 131 Words
June 29, 2005
Truer Words...

Have Not Been Written!

The traffic over at my blog Middle Earth Journal is up this month. I should be happy, right? Well I'm not. I did a single post that mentioned Natalee Halloway about 2 or 3 days after the media event started. It was a rant against the media for wall to wall coverage. Most, but not all, of the increased traffic this month has been search engine hits for that post. I'm sorry, but that's really sick. The world is full of life and death news, real news. I'm disgusted.

Now for a reality check for our friends at the Networks....

They ALL deserve attention...

Posted by David A at 02:27 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | 109 Words
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