This is a subject that I have been mulling over for months. Are the number of missing persons on the rise, or is it just that modern technology, the 24 hour a day news channels, and the internet are covering these cases in more depth than the traditional media model? Or it just that Jan and I have become more focused on the subject?

My theory is that the answer is a yes to all of the above.

It is not all doom and gloom. Jan pointed out that there occasions where she will get an alert for a missing child, and by the time she has written an article the missing child has been found. You can read the article here.

There are never the less a growing list of missing children, adults, and the elderly. Where are these people? Not every case is the result of foul play, but every case is cause for concern.

It may be unfair, but it is a fact of life, 1% of the cases gain 99% of the press coverage. The great examples of this unfortunate trend are Caylee Anthony and Haleigh Cummings. A google search on Caylee Anthony and her accused killer Casey Anthony results in over 11 million hits. A similar search on Haleigh Cummings, some time step mom Misty Croslin, father Ronald Cummings, and the rest of the rag tag mob comes in at over 5 million hits.

But what about the many other missing persons? They get short changed is the simple answer.

I was looking at the cases Jan has followed just over the past two days. These people are not famous, they have not received any press coverage, but they should:

Chitara Plasencia

Alexander Lain

Trinity Gilbert- Flores 

 Ramsay and Noor Bowers

Louis Fanning and Anastacio Gomez

The sad part is that this is the mere tip of the iceberg. I have no solution to the problem. There is no magic bullet. There are some observations however. In many missing children cases, when you look back you gain 20/20 vision. The writing was on the wall, but no one took the time to read it. Clearly Casey Anthony could not even deal with a Chia Pet ($9.99 plus S&H) never mind a daughter. Where were the family? Who couldn’t see the problems?

The Haleigh Cummings story is just as sad and frustrating.

I am not a fan of regulation, I enjoyed George Orwell’s 1984 for what it was, a book. I do not think that we need more government regulations, but I do think that everyone has a responsibility for looking out for those in potential danger. They may be young, they may be old, or they may be somewhere in the middle. But they share one thing in common, someone knew something, someone dropped the ball.

Simon and Jan Barrett

Be Sociable, Share!