18 January 2017

Nightmare Scenario: Parade Danger

From The Advocate, our local newspaper, Child dies after being struck by float in Abbeville's Martin Luther King Day parade:
A child struck by a float during the Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade Monday in Abbeville has died.
...
Witnesses say the child was struck by the vehicle pulling the float after entering the roadway for a piece of candy or throw. No barricades were placed along the roadway during the parade.
There's a bit more to the story, with a little shaming of the mom (she was watching other children in addition to this one), but basically five paragraphs about this nightmare scenario.

I watched a story about it on one of our local TV stations last night. It was not the lead story (that went to a rash of break ins at our university's football stadium -- WTF/who cares), and it was just as short. There was a picture of the child and a bit of interview with a grieving relative. But nothing about taking steps to ensure safety of other children at future parades (we have parades so often in Louisiana it is ridiculous). There was basically no real reporting at all (in either media).

If this child were white the reporting would have been different. Lead story, more complex reporting with an eye to stopping this type of tragedy in the future. The distance of the town from Baton Rouge doesn't matter. They do huge packages about little towns when there's a sensational crime  So I can only surmise that this coverage is light because of the child's race.

There's no reporting even on the number of other children/people who have died at parades (and you know there have been others). Asking parade organizers at the upcoming Mardi Gras parades for their take on the loss and how they'll be improving safety to avoid that at their parades. That kind of thing.

I didn't think I had the capacity to care about things that aren't strictly national politics with the dumpster fire that's going on in Washington, but obviously I do. And this is awful and scary. I hate that a family has to deal with the loss of a child over candy.

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