I almost swallowed my teeth.

The Headline states:

Earth Day Facts: When It Is, How It Began, What to Do

There it was, a large photo heading an article on the NatGeo webpage:shithead
The caption accompanying the photo states:

Ira Einhorn—a leader of nonviolence, drug, and free-love movements in the 1960s—speaks at Philadelphia’s first Earth Day celebration on April 22, 1970, Across the U.S. the first Earth Day drew an estimated 20 million participants.

Why was I amazed?

Because usually fluff articles on the wonderfulness of Earth Day tend to be Stalinesque history, cutting out Mr. Einhorn’s involvement with the holiday.

Because Ira Einhorn is better known as the “Unicorn killer”, a man who had abused women,  and who murdered his girlfriend in 1977 for daring to leave him. He hid her in a trunk in a storage area of his apartment, and refused to let the police or even the landlord investigate the horrible smell or the dark stain coming from that area.

Her name was Holly Maddux, and like other nameless people killed by the rich and politically connected, it was her family, not the local police, who sought her when she went missing, connected the dots between a man with a history of domestic abuse and her disappearance,  and after her body was found, fought for 20 years to bring a man protected by powerful interests and at least two governments to bring him to justice.

What “rich and powerful” people? Time Magazine names some of them

One after another at Einhorn’s bail hearing, his supporters took the stand in his defense. A minister, a corporate lawyer, a playwright, an economist, a telephone-company executive. They couldn’t imagine Einhorn’s harming any living thing. Release of murder defendants pending trial was unheard of, but Einhorn’s attorney was soon-to-be U.S. senator Arlen Specter, and bail was set at a staggeringly low $40,000 — only $4,000 of it needed to walk free. It was paid by Barbara Bronfman, a Montreal socialite who had married into the Seagram distillery family

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,168382-3,00.html#ixzz0lmryibkp

So, left out on bail, he skipped the country. How does one live as a fugative in Europe? With rich girlfriends, and with the help of patsies who covered up his trail and gave him money.

From CMMwebsite:

“He developed a following over there (France). The press over there never mentioned his crime or his victim. And some people said, ‘Well, he hasn’t killed anyone in 20 years, so let’s leave him alone.”
Meg, Elizabeth and John made three trips to France and conveyed to the French public that the extradition of Einhorn wasn’t “political” in nature, nor was he a romantic character who happened to be an unjustly accused fugitive. They showed photos to the French people, photos of their beloved Holly, whose life had been cut short by Einhorn. Assistant District Attorney Joel Rosen “That was key. If the family does not go to France and does not put a human face on the crime and the victim, then Einhorn probably never leaves France.”

So finally he was extradited and ended up in jail.

It took the family 20 years to get justice, and the Unicorn killer now is behind bars for life, still claiming he is innocent.

But Ira Einhorn is not a “normal human being”. He is a sociopath, who went into the anti war and later environmental movement to con people. But once he was finally convicted, his name disappeared from most reports of the history of Earth day….until now.

His picture is back, hero of eathday, for all to see and “remember”, while never mentioning the victim of this monster.

So I wonder: are the National Geographic reporters unable to “google”, or  like the rich and powerful who enabled him to flee, have they been “conned” by this monster, or do they figure, like his French backers, that we can ignore a murder that happened 33 years ago, and rehabilitate Einhorn’s legacy  back into Earth day celebrations.

Shame on them.


Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. She writes on human rights at Makaipablog.

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