Saturday, July 29, 2006

Don't Come Crying To Me...

The "Tragedy of the Week" in New York right now is the death of 18-yo Jennifer Moore.

The way the whole thing is being handled just about makes me sick.

Yes. It is terrible that she died the way she did. I want to see Coleman strung up for the birds to peck at his flesh.


At each turn of this girl's evening, she made a stupid decision that found her alone, drunk, and lost in an area of town with questionable lighting and no one to hear her scream.

The New York Times article in today's paper is written in such a precious, nauseating way, I want to scream.

Where is the line between "blaming the victim" and demanding that a story be told truthfully?

When I was a child, my mother often said to me, "Don't come crying to me if you [insert horrific if preventable injury here]!" I fail to see why the same kind of accountability hasn't been demanded here.

Coleman has been arrested. He will definitely go to trial, and he will definitely go to jail. Or so we hope. The fact remains that he took a young woman across state lines to a seedy motel, where he raped and killed her. All of these point to "Go to Jail. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200."

So please, spare me the "WHY AREN'T WE BLAMING COLEMAN?!?" Because we are. If he walks, it will be an injustice and a travesty.

My parents taught me to be smart, to be savvy. Even now, my mother doesn't like me taking the train back to my Brooklyn apartment by myself before midnight on Sundays. And I don't exactly live in a deserted area.

At 18, I was definitely drinking in bars and staying out late. But the only time I ever was alone was in the back of a cab I hailed myself--and CERTAINLY didn't share with a stranger. Safety in numbers was one of the very first things imparted to me. And no matter how trashed I was, I NEVER would have left a friend to pass out and be put in an ambulance by herself.

If this were a case of a young man being drunk, disoriented, and alone who got mugged and beaten to death, no one would have the slightest problem with saying "Well, you act stupid and it'll come back to bite you in the ass." Because it was a woman who was raped and killed, no one wants to say it--and those who do get reamed out.

In the pie chart of blame 99% goes to Coleman, but I simply can't, as a thinking, sentient person, ignore that 1% of blame that goes to a stupid girl who probably would have gotten herself (and her friend) killed by drunk driving had they been able to retrieve the car.

So please, let's save the precious photographs and woulda-shoulda-couldas for people who are true victims, and not people who acted dumb and set themselves up for trouble--even if only by 1%.

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