Most of us couldn't help ourselves (well, ok, I wouldn't be able to, personally.) I would want everyone to know that I darn well didn't have anything to do with it at all, and if they want to find my beloved step son, they should take the focus off of me, and start looking elsewhere!
I don't know if LE has been gunning for Terri from the beginning and has continued to do so. I am on the fence when it comes to her innocence or guilt. I have spent more time thinking that she is guilty but when I am of that mind its because I am angry and scared.
Since I am willing to withhold judgement until facts are available I am placing my faith in LE to do the same.
I do know that I just don't really like Terri. That could be and probably is at least in part the result of the media's portrayal of her, but that doesn't mean that she doesn't want Tyron to be at home where he belongs. I don't much care for husbands who cheat on their wives, but that doesn't mean my heart doesn't break for Kaine.
I just wish Kyron weren't missing. This stuff is just so heartbreaking its unbearable. I can't imagine what it is like for everyone involved. Children shouldn't have to live in fear that something like this could happen. What the is going on in this world?
Anyway, the argument that denying guilt isn't helpful when people don't believe you doesn't make sense to me. If people thought I did something bad, I sure wouldn't think, "Oh, well, what's the point of denying I did it?"
No matter how much she ignores it, there's a HUGE elephant in the room, and it's not going to go away.
Another shocker: Cullen exposes how the police actually were given numerous warnings about Klebold/Harris by concerned citizens. And they blew them off.
Even worse, LE bungled many things--and then proceeded to try and cover up their mistakes. In fact, some evidence even went "missing."
LE got an idea in their heads: nothing to it with these boys acting weird, just teenaged stuff.
Then they learned that those trying to get their attention were right.
Then they got other ideas in their head. And then they also had ego problems, territorial problems, and some bouts of just plain incompetence.
And then they tried to cover up their mistakes.
It's all in Cullen's book.
Cullens' painstaking tracking of the details, including LE actions, gives real insight into how easy it is to be lulled into thinking LE is on top of things. In fact, LE is filled with people of varying degrees of competence, varying degrees of intelligence, varying degrees of honesty, and all the human elements of ego, arrogance, fear, buddyism, personal feuds, etc.
In short, LE is just like any other profession--except they have enormous power.
Frankly, in this case, I'm afraid that LE focused on TH early on, KH & DY's statements adding to it (for awhile it seemed that LE worked for KH rather than for the public!) and set out to prove themselves right in their TH theory.
A clue to that--when LE immediately assured parents their kids were safe, nothing to worry about folks. And they said that right away. What colossal arrogance--"don't you worry your pretty little head, missy, the law is here." All ego and PR. Yes, I understand they didn't want a panic, but that statement so quickly showed their frame of mind.
Unless and until LE shows up with an 18-wheeler filled with solid provable evidence that TH did something to Kyron, I'm going to continue to believe that they targeted her early on--and wanted a quick 'n easy solution and to be heroes.
Just like at Columbine. This syndrome, for lack of a better word, is fairly common and well-known.
Understand, I am not saying that TH is innocent--but there's no facts so far to prove her guilty of anything except indulging in ill-advised, tacky, and stupid behavior. And she's not the only one in this whole mess.
The Cullen book is a must-read (also available on Kindle, which is how I read it). I'm going to add in another link to his website:
And, on the right, click on The Columbine Guide to view actual documents, videos, and evidence (warning: very graphic).
And, overall, this story has suffered from some very very bad, amateurish, poorly-edited (or not edited at all), personal-slant (bad!) "news" and incompetently done rumor-mongering dressed up as journalism. I've seen things published that had they crossed my desk would have gone into the circular file. Too many things that were just ego stuff for on-air reporters. Too many unattributed sources with nothing added to provide any substantiation to any claim that anyone makes (apparently). Sloppy, sloppy writing, editing, and interviewing.
All in all, the media in this case, especially local--who IMHO have the greatest responsibility to their community--have earned a D- and teeter dangerously close to an F. Warning: I'm an old-school journalist raised and trained by demanding editors who put ethics and "doing it right" before everything else, including "being first." If you're first to the BBQ with a pile of dog poop instead of steak (excuse me) it doesn't much matter that you're first.
Ooops. Ranting here. Must stop now.
A false child abduction and murder accusation has to be the most gut-wrenching, disgusting and horrifying accusations to heap upon an innocent person. It can be life-wrecking just to be accused, even falsely. The thought that someone facing such an accusation would think: "I should tell people I'm innocent, but... they probably wouldn't believe me." and then remaining silent- doesn't make any sense.
I can believe that after saying, "I am innocent, I had nothing to do with Kyron's disappearance, I am heartbroken and scared." --- and the public still condemning you, at a certain point you'd give up protesting. I can see that. But to not even say it once?
That's just one example of the tsunami of stuff about her that's been publicized, criticized, analyzed, amateur pscyhoanalyzed, etc. etc.
Early on, she was working on getting flyers picked up and out. She did family stuff with media. Then suddenly--wham! The alleged MFH plot rears up, and suddenly her husband and baby are gone, and she's slapped with an RO, and oh yes, there's that stupid sting. Plus whatever happened on the LDTs. And being ambushed by media even at her own front door.
She's now a stranger in a very strange land.
The way I see it, at first she followed KH's lead. Then she was voted off the island, left adrift, and found herself questioned and maligned in the media.
Frankly, only an idiot at that point would go to the media and say "Hey! I'm innocent!" Because that opens the door. If she has her own press conference, there'll be tons of questions that she's best off not answering as any answers can be manipulated, wrongly analyzed, misquoted, etc. Let alone everyone's interpretation. Referece: see Bean's links to the "why you shouldn't talk to the cops" videos.
Had she had a competent media advisor, it would have been good to issue one single statement something like this: "My heart is broken over the loss of Kyron. I'm also grieving over the fact that my husband chose to steal my baby, get a restraining order against me, and that he also chose to believe a story LE got out of some guy I hired for yard work months ago. After years of working to be the best parent I could be to Kyron and my other children, now I find that Kyron's biological mother, who I kept well-informed, has always believed me to be a liar. There is so much coming at me that I barely know which way to turn. But I do know this: I did not harm Kyron. And long-term, that truth will be revealed. Kyron is the most important thing here. And I hope that LE continues to investigate the possibility of a predator loose among our children. (Insert one-sentence ref to attempt to grab another child right around the time Kyron went missing, can't recall exact details right now, peeps). This country seems to be suffering from increased child abuse and predators, and like you, I never thought that I or my family would wind up in a situation like this. To whoever took or has Kyron--please, let us bring him home. Please."
That's very rough draft, folks, and needs editing. But if she had issued one written statement like that before she'd gotten an attorney--who then told her to be silent if he's as good as he's made out to be--she would have fulfilled a public-perceived need to speak out.
Again, the draft above would receive extreme editing if it were mine to follow on and do. And in no way would I ever recommend that she do a press conference, interviews, etc. I've literally trained a very smart first-time candidate with lots of community work and experience, on how to handle the media and questions from the public at debates. Even given her expertise with public works, she was easy prey when we started. (She wasn't when we finished!).
The fact that TH didn't have a media advisor and didn't issue one written statement shouldn't, IMHO, count against her. Especially not when her husband and Kyron's other parents were doing the TH bash--and at that point, throwing around phrases like "LE told us this and that". Notice that now they're backing off from that and they've had to say that their info didn't come from LE?
Please note: I'm not saying that TH is innocent. I am looking at this "in theory" of what she could have done better to appease public demands for another act in this circus. (Ahem--let alone the idiot stuff of bat phones, sexting, etc.)
If she wanted to snap back, the statement could have read something like "My heart is broken at Kyron's loss. But the focus should not be on me, or any parent. We have suffered a terrible blow, and the focus should be on Kyron and bringing him home. I intend to keep the focus on Kyron, and one way to do that is to stay out of the liimelight and therefore, out of LE's way. To whoever took Kyron--please, please let us know where he is. Send a note to the principal, call anonymously, do something, Kyron, I love you. We all love you."
Which is why media ambush people. And in a society where "polite" is valued--especially for women--it's almost guaranteed that someone under stress will say something. Doesn't really matter what it is for some forms of "journalism" because the "journalist" will have achived the real goal: be able to say he/she "interviewed" the person and to get a quote, any quote.
Kat, I totally agree with you. And I don't fault her for not having a media consultant, of course that wasn't anything that was part of her world before Kyron's disappearance. And as much as I believe a lot of her behavior has been fishy and ill-advised, I don't believe every single thing she's done is suspicious. (such as trying to take her daughter from daycare - this is an impulse I completely understand and a very natural reaction to your child being held from you).
Still, a simple statement of innocence, even one that was not run past legal departments and advisors, even one conceived and written out of impulse after the first round of accusations and later perhaps regretted - would have seemed like a more "normal" reaction to such a heinous accusation.
Honestly, I look at some of the pictures the media doesn't publish with their Terri-skewering articles, the pics they have on that FB page that show a happy, serene and content Terri holding an unbelievably gorgeous and smiling baby K. And I want that woman in that picture to tell me she didn't do this terrible thing. That mother in the picture looks like a nurturer, and I want her to really be one, to not live in a world where a woman who looks content could abduct or kill or stash a child.
I guess part of my issue is that as a mother, I'm angry at Terri for acting so irresponsibly after Kyron vanished (sexting) and for not not caring what we the public think and not saying to hell with us and going about the business of leading searches and organizing picture drives and fundraisers for reward money. And yes I know that each of these things people would mock and deride and twist into something guilty-seeming, but I want her to be the sort of mother who is heartbroken by that and yet still marches forward doing what she can in spite of that.
I know I have unrealistic expectations... !! I know that would take backbone I myself might not have. But that's how I feel when I see those happy pictures of Terri the mother, and it's part of what makes me so upset by her actions after Kyron went missing.
Ami, and I agree with you--especially on the trying to get her baby back or at least confront Kaine. It's ironic that those who claim that she didn't care about her baby because she didn't "fight back" also thwack her for doing something very active to see her baby, and possibly get her back, right then. (Note: remember, at that point she did not know about the RO coming.)
And no, we don't all keep media advisors at hand! But most folks don't realize how hard it is to speak in public, especially in a time of crisis, and especially so when one is at risk in a criminal case.
In today's world, where everyone seems to have a video camera and be putting stuff online, it may seem simple stuff to make a statement. But there's a world of difference between "I looked up and there was the tornado" or "I heard shots and screaming and I hid" and being in the middle of a missing child crisis.
And, it's also more stressful than most people realize when the cameras, those bright lights, the still cameras, those mikes are all focused on you. KH seems to thrive on it; DY is holding herself together for her son's sake. And they're on the "up river" part of this in comparison to TH, who's been painted as the Mistress of all Evil.
Most people don't know how to deal with the media. Nor with LE. And both professions take advantage of that fact. So best to get help in what you say and how you say it to media, and also best to lawyer up to deal with LE. (I know that's not a popular stance, but sorry!)
I sometimes wonder if KH didn't get advice from the PR folks at his company.
I so agree with you. And the manipulation of public opinion via careful selection of imagery is a very valid concern. Sadly, media in this new age now seems to use their choice of imagery to convey a message--which makes that propaganda and not reporting.
Like you, I've looked at those pictures, and I've wondered how they can all lie. But pictures lie--we all know that. Yet, how is it that a woman who took so many family pictures for everyone to enjoy, could suddenly become someone who set out to destroy that world?
If she is innocent and is vindicated, there will be a whole lot of 'splaining to do for many, many people, starting with LE and KH.
And if she isn't innocent, then there's a whole lot of psychological stuff that will need looking into.
Last edited by Kat010; 08-07-2010 at 11:00 AM. Reason: typos
Steadfast, I agree. But I'm offering these caveats: a) KH was clearly in charge at first. b)after that, TH was isolated and maligned. So she wasn't in the category of "distraught parents speak to media to plead for child."
She had knockout punches one after the other.
I really can't recall any other similar case where one spouse (KH) so clearly runs the show, and where then one spouse is cast in the role of Mistress of all Evil and clarly ostracized from the "grieving family" circle.
KH snatched that opportunity. There wasn't much left for her to say, IMHO.
And I bet he had media advice. He's been working the loops very adroitly. I haven't said that out loud before.
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Ooops, sorry Kimster. My bad. We did veer off into "should she and how" comment type discussion.
Train back on track.Choo! Choo!
Last edited by Kimster; 08-07-2010 at 11:41 AM. Reason: typo
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SAVE MY THREAD, STAY ON TOPIC! LOL
(Especially because I'll wander off into the gardens of theory and good/bad journalism at the drop of a bit and a byte...)
I found this interesting link from July, in which sources say that TH denied the MFH plot. It references the Oregonian, but I can't tell quickly if it's just a reprint of their story: