Thursday, March 13, 2014

Remembering the Liberal Lie of the Kitty Genovese Murder -- 50 Years Later

Catherine "Kitty" Genovese
Today is the 50th anniversary of the horrible murder in New York City of a young woman named Kitty Genovese. Amidst hundreds of murders that year, in NYC and elsewhere, that particular one became famous because of the New York Times coverage. As the published story went, a young woman returning home late at night was attacked on the street in front of her large apartment building, and her screams were ignored by scores of her neighbors, who, as the narrative went, did nothing out of fear and apathy. The story made national news as a sign of a developing social pathology.

I remember the event. I was in 6th grade at the time, in a Chicago suburb. My teacher told us students the story and led many discussions about it, and the topic came up in later classes for some years. It is one of the very few single events I can remember being discussed in those early years of mine, that’s how big a national story it was.

Now, years later, we know the media narrative was a lie. In fact, only a few people heard her screams, which were hard to differentiate from the background din of raucous city life in a rough neighborhood.  And in fact, at least one resident did call the police and at least one yelled out the window. The real story is one of a young woman walking alone late at night to her apartment building who was attacked by a mentally ill psychopath on the prowl for a victim. The murderer was, in fact, initially scared off by shouts from the apartment building but only hid nearby, returning to the still-alive victim when the police failed to arrive. The New York Times needed a sensational story to sell papers, and then as now loved a story angle that put average Americans in a bad light.

Thus the myth of the 38 apathetic bystanders was born. And it was all a lie, from the same NY Times that some years earlier suppressed the truth about Stalin’s mass starvation of millions of farmers in the Soviet Union out of sympathy for his socialistic intentions, a disgrace which the newspaper to this day has not even acknowledged let alone apologized for. Among the many real truths of the Kitty Genovese story is that the liberal media in general and the New York Times in particular cannot be trusted to tell the truth.

J Greco

One revisionist look: