Leaving babies and dogs in hot cars is the new missing white women shark attack
Just like every county fair hangs their hat on a theme, (Farming! It’s Farmtastic!) every summer finds the cable media latching onto an apparent trend which they proceed to hump mercilessly until Labor Day comes along and then everybody goes back to school and starts watching regular TV again because re-run season is over.
We all remember the Summer of ’05, when CNN obsessively covered the disappearance of Natalee Holloway with 24/7 wall-to-wall coverage. This fell in line with their previous coverage of other missing white women, including Chandra Levy in 2001, Laci Peterson in 2002, and Elizabeth Smart, also in 2002. The obsession with missing young white women, particularly pretty ones to the exclusion of women of color who go missing everyday, led journalist Gwen Ifill to dub the obsession: “Missing White Women Syndrome.”
Everyone loves a damsel in distress, particularly if she young, pretty, and photogenic. They are ratings gold.
It seems like almost every summer is the Summer of the Shark and, while CNN admits that shark attacks are up, shark coverage is down. This is perhaps the result of sharks getting a whole week devoted to them for binge watching, to say nothing about possibly the greatest film series since The Godfather.
This summer seems to be about Drivers Acting Badly, and not just the road-ragey ones.
This is the Summer of Baking Our Kids in Hot Cars because we have other things to do that are more important with our self-obsessed lives.
The season kicked off early with the tragic tale of Shanesha Taylor, a mother desperately in need of a job who was arrested after leaving her kids in the car while she interviewed for a job. Taylor’s plight , to say nothing of her heartrending mugshot, touched people across the country and resulted in her story having a relatively satisfying ending.
Then there are the others.
There was the Oregon nanny who left her charges — a 3-year-old boy and a 2-month-old girl — inside a closed-up minivan on a 90-degree day while she was in a tanning booth working on her incipient skin cancer.
Then there is the horrific story of Justin Ross Harris of Atlanta who, in a fit of buyer’s remorse over being married and having kids, apparently decided to kill his 22-month-old son by leaving him in the car all day while he spent his time sexting women because he apparently thinks there is a huge demand out there for emotionally-stunted sociopathic pudgy goofballs.
The Florida father who left his daughter in the car while he went in the house to get his phone charger … and then decided to take a nap.
There is the strange, still-unexplained death of 15-month-old Benjamin Seitz in Connecticut.
Most recently, Juan Munford was arrested after leaving his twin 1-year-old daughters in the car on a hot and humid Virginia day so he could have some sexy-time with a woman against a wall behind a duplex. So. Hawt.
Several of the children’s deaths this summer can be attributed to kids somehow accessing cars and locking themselves in, only to be found later. But there are far far too many stories of parents ‘forgetting’ and leaving their kid in the car on hot days and, to be quite frank, I can’t understand this. It is one thing to forget and leave you coffee cup on top of the car or, in the case of a drunken woman in Arizona, her baby in a car seat on top of the car because she might be a big fan of Raising Arizona. But it is another thing to leave little Dakota or Bella Katniss in the back of the minivan because you want to rush into the house before Ellen starts.
It’s a stupid and selfish thing to do.
To put in perspective, there is this:
During this hot summer, PLEASE DO NOT leave your pet or child unattended in your vehicle. pic.twitter.com/7XTfRmj7rw
— American Nazi Party (@ANP14) July 16, 2014
If the American Nazi Party — people who either think the Holocaust didn’t happen or are blasé. about shoving 6 million Jews into ovens — think that leaving your kids or dogs in a hot car is a bad thing , it’s must be a really really bad thing…
[Bored dog in car on Shutterstock]