Has National Media Ignored Disappearance of Jahessye Shockley Because "She is a Little Black Kid?"
The disappearance of 5-year-old Jahessye Shockley is now officially a race issue following some comments made by her grandmother, Shirley Johnson, yesterday.
Johnson's upset by the lack of coverage Shockley's disappearance has received in the national media -- all while the disappearance of a missing Kansas City girl, Lisa Irwin, is dominating the cable news networks.
Irwin happens to be a little white girl. Shockley is black, which is why Johnson thinks the national press isn't jumping on the story.
"It is because she is a little black kid," Johnson told reporters yesterday "Arizona is known for this."
Johnson may have a point, but there's a slight problem with her argument: Arizona news outlets are the only ones giving this story any attention at all. In fact, the majority of local news outlets have featured Shockley's disappearance on their websites (with the exception of the Arizona Republic) since she was first reported missing more than a week ago.
Arizona may not have the greatest history when it comes to its racial sensitivity (trying to cancel Martin Luther King Jr. Day certainly didn't help things), but any decision to ignore the disappearance of a black girl is being made by non-Arizonans.
That said, we want to know what you think: is the national media ignoring the disappearance of Jahessye Shockley because she's black?
Cast your vote below.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Phoenix New Times' biggest stories.