Sad but true. Missing White Women Syndrome is a thing. A sickness. And our society is currently ill from it.
Here’s a quick list of things white people like almost as much as dead hot white women:
- Weddings because we like spending exorbitant amounts of money on things that we know aren’t going to last.
- Disneyland, because we can’t stop ourselves from paying for the opportunity to get into something gated and then wait in line all day.
- Commuting alone in our cars because it gives us time to sing without being judged.
- Golfing or walking for charity in ridiculous outfits because it makes us feel like we did something for someone somewhere without having to exert any real effort. And we get to miss work doing it.
- Telling the people on TV what we really think of them even though they can’t hear us.
- Watching movies about cancer that are nothing like real-life cancer.
- Taking credit for work we didn’t do. White guys in finance who let an algorithm pick stocks, bonds and futures—most of the time defrauding someone, somewhere—while they make phone calls is a good example of this.
- When we get in trouble we like to pretend we had no idea what we were doing was wrong. See: #7
- Birthdays. Doesn’t matter if it’s a completely worthless, depressing birthday like 37 or 53—white people love that shit. It’s like everyone’s always turning five in white people world.
- Hating shit we don’t understand and then when it lands at our doorstep, becoming the most tolerant/enlightened ever. “I have nothing against the gays, I just DO NOT understand that lifestyle.” “Wait. Son, you’re gay? Hallelujah!!! When’s Pride???”
- The movie Titanic as metaphor for white people life. We all know we’re gonna die, but let’s try to fall in love fuck everyone else in the process.
- The showing of fake empathy when bad shit happens somewhere in the world. When it happens to us, fake empathy becomes outrage.
- Florida teachers who look like strippers and bang their male students.
But all those combined don’t come anywhere near white people’s love for dead hot white girls.
All the better if they’re blond.
There’s Marilyn and Diana at the top of the list. But how about Jackie O, Grace Kelly, Sylvia Plath, Selena, Gilda, Aaliyah, Amy Winehouse. Hell, Amanda Peterson (the one with the wine-stained leather dress in Can’t Buy Me Love) destroyed the internets when she passed last week and she hadn’t been seen since Clinton was out chasing Gennifer Flowers.
From Chandra Levy to Natalee Holloway to Laci Peterson to 2015’s entry: Kathryn Steinle—we are particularly enthralled with dead hot white women, non-celebrity category.
This love for dead hot white women even has a name, Missing White Women Syndrome.
Steinle was shot in the back and killed on San Francisco’s Pier 14 July 1. Her death has mobilized millions of angry white people to try to turn her plight and her family’s grief from a random atrocity to a rally cry for immigration reform—her alleged assailant a Mexican national who’d been deported several times.
White people thrive on being outraged about and enamored with white women who are cut down in their prime. It’s like commercial-free day TV mixed with cocaine and Diet Coke. It’s everything we like listed above—plus gluten-free cupcakes—combined.
Had Steinle been a black man, the same white people and their show of fake empathy (#13) would have given him the same amount of their attentions as the 615 (and counting) people shot and killed by cops in America so far this year—many of whom were of color.
In other words, none.
If Steinle were another Mexican national, you’d hear nothing about it except some vaguely racist white person happy hour talk about one less to deport.
…And I certainly wouldn’t be writing this.
The craven collective need for a missing white woman is usually subdued by binge watching one of the dozenish or so series or films…about dead hot white women.
Some of the best dead hot white women serials since 2013: Sundance’s Top of the Lake, NBC’s Hannibal, BBC’s The Fall, AMC’s The Killing, BBC America’s Broadchurch, FX’s The Bridge, Fox’s The Following, HBO’s True Detective, and—of course—last year’s biggest non-sequel grosser Gone Girl ($370 box office million worldwide) David Fincher’s adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s script-flipping turn of a white woman who fakes her own death…to get the attention of white people—least of all her white husband.
Hey, beats losing your car in the Costco parking lot.
…Another thing white people like.