Every year nearly 800,000 children under the age of 18 are reported as missing. This startling statistic works out to be over 2,000 children daily. Out of that number, 20% of those missing children are black or African American. When any child goes missing, it is a tragedy both to the child and to the family. Regardless of the color of the child, each one matters, but that is not how black children are seen. Unfortunately, there is a huge disparity among searching for "black" children. Although it is unspoken, the need to jump on the case of a missing black child is not shown as an emergency. In the past, there have been enormous cases that the media have jumped on such as JonBennett Ramsey and more recently Caylee Anthony. When these beautiful little "Caucasian" girls went missing it took the media about a month to place them in national headlines everywhere. Meanwhile, there were countless numbers of little black children, such as the case of Riyla Wilson. Little Riyla was missing for over a year before she was even acknowledged. And the sad part is that most people who read this article, still do not know who Riyla Wilson is, but they are extremely familiar with Caylee Anthony.
Riyla Wilson was a 4 year old beautiful little black girl that went missing back in 2001. What makes this case so strikingly disturbing is that little Riyla was a Florida foster care child. She was a part of a system that is supposed to keep up with the well being of children. The girl was only found to be missing after a new case worker was assigned. This case is still going on. View: TRIAL RESUMES IN CASE OF MISSING FOSTER GIRL. Some people will say that this is just one case, however, it is actually one case of MANY. While Jaycee Dugard and Caylee Anthony remained a national story, it was not the same for children like, Amir Jennings who is another current missing child's case. (To view more missing black children, please view the additional information below). If you took a poll, most people, including blacks, have never heard of any of these precious children. The media may mention it in passing or most likely not mention them at all. Many people may try to make excuses as to why some children are mentioned and others remain not mentioned, but the facts remain the same. Minority children simply do not get the same attention. This is not a time to point fingers and blame each other. Nor is this a race war. This is simply a reality and a symbol that things need to change. Every missing child, red, yellow, black, white or green, is precious and this is not a matter of focusing on whether or not there are racial reasons behind these tragedies, but this is the moment to become educated and aware. It could just save a life...
"See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven (Matthew 18:10)."
Written By: Te-Shandra Haskett, MBA
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