Big Reward for Bad Behavior

The other day I sat in a satellite uplink studio in San Francisco with an earpiece in my ear and a microphone clipped to my lapel, staring at a camera lens during a taping of the Nancy Grace Show. 2,854 miles away in Orlando, Florida Drew Kesse, the father of Jennifer, a 24-year-old woman who has been missing since Jan. 24, 2006, was sitting in a similar room, wired up in a similar fashion, during the taping of the Nancy Grace Show. The Topic of the program was Dr. Phil’s interview with Casey Anthony’s parents George and Cindy.

A week earlier Drew Kesse came out swinging. He called the Anthony’s “a disgrace and an insult to every missing person and their families,” and Dr. Phil “a pimp for (airing) this garbage”. I was looking forward to supporting Drew’s position on the program, but alas the opportunity was never presented. Therefore, I’d like to take a moment to explain why Drew is right, why Dr. Phil is wrong, and why the Anthony’s have outstayed their welcome.

Drew and I have some things in common with George and Cindy. Like the Anthony’s, we both experienced the loss of a loved one. My daughter Polly was missing for 65-days before her remains were recovered. Drew still doesn’t know what happened to his daughter. However, he does know that she was taken against her will and remains missing to this day.  That’s pretty much were our commonalities with the Anthony’s end, because from the moment that both of our daughters disappeared we had only one goal: to pursue the truth in recovering our girls. We didn’t pursue celebrity or wealth. We were willing to do whatever was necessary, including turning in members of our own families to get our children back.

On the other hand, the Anthony’s wouldn’t know the truth if it kicked them in the butt. Their daughter Casey is apparently unable to tell the truth, and even if she did, how could you believe her? George and Cindy, as was demonstrated again in the Dr. Phil interview, are not only unable to acknowledge the truth, but continue to excuse and justify their daughter’s narcissistic, homicidal behavior.

During the interview Cindy said that grand mal seizures, a brain tumor and possible postpartum schizophrenia could potentially explain Casey’s behavior. I’ve never heard of seizures prompting murder, and according to the Psychologist on the Nancy Grace Show postpartum schizophrenia is a mental disorder that doesn’t even exist. No, the similarities that Drew and I share with the Anthony’s begin and end with the disappearance of our daughters.

Generally, the families of missing or murdered children struggle financially. In our single minded determination to recover our lost children we put other worldly considerations aside. Families give up incomes, or become too depressed to work. Medical and psychological costs can devour huge amounts of our savings. Failure or inability to attend to mundane bookkeeping can result in home foreclosures and or mounting debt. I am not complaining; I am simply stating the truth as I understand it.

According to all credible reports Dr. Phil did not pay the Anthony’s for the interview. Instead he donated nearly $500,000 to a “charitable organization currently being formed to honor their granddaughter called Caylee’s Fund.” Truth be told, Caylee’s Fund does not yet exist, therefore it is not a charitable organization, and therein lies the rub.

The Anthony family is handsomely rewarded for abysmal behavior. Casey gets away with murder, George and Cindy lie and parry and deny the truth, yet they receive a huge payoff from a daytime TV program seeking sky-high ratings. Caylee is still dead and the truth be damned.