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The Media’s Role in Attaining Justice for Black and Missing Persons


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There is a rising sentiment in this country that places value and regard for Black life at a fatally low level. It has been made dangerously evident that Black demise at the hands of anti-Black, racist violence—state-sanctioned or otherwise—has become far too common. Society has not been taught to value or respect Black lives. The shooting deaths of Michael Brown, Renisha McBride, Trayvon Martin, and the hundreds of thousands of slain Black people who came before them should illustrate that point. But to further drive the point home, consider that there are 64,000 Black women and girls who have gone missing in the United States just since 2010.

This lack of regard for the safety of Black people and the protection of our rights is symptomatic of the established order of white supremacy in this country, which must be dismantled. Dismantling white supremacy is a tall order, and one way to start is throughequity in media exposure as an entry point for re-education. There are examples of these successes as videos recorded by active bystanders become viral on social media and raise the visibility of the frequency of these violent offenses. Similarly, for missing persons of colorcases, social media campaigns raise their visibility through memes, Facebook, and Twitter. Luckily, social media has been used to tighten efforts and strengthen the exchange of information and actions taken in attaining justice for Black victims.

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