“Derogatory information”

I was just looking at the discussion section of an article about a certain young woman who’s been missing for several years. Foul play suspected. Her family has a website out for her and talk about the person they think killed her. Anyway, the commenters are talking about this woman and one of them said the woman was “a mess” and her lifestyle was high-risk so a lot of people could have killed her. Someone else started talking about the “derogatory” and “victim blaming” information posted on certain websites. They linked to Charley’s casefile as an example.

The Charley file for this woman notes that she was employed as an exotic dancer. (She disappeared after leaving the strip club when her shift was over.) It also says she suffered from bipolar disorder and had a history of abusing cocaine. These things are quite true, as far as I know. I have actually heard from this woman’s family and they didn’t tell me anything on the page was inaccurate.

Am I wrong to post these things, since they might make people less sympathetic to the missing woman?

I think not. I am certainly not “victim blaming” when I post things about an MP’s criminal record or mental illness or whatever bad things were in their lives. I refuse to judge people — an MP is missing and needs to get found, no matter who they are or what they did. Certainly, if this woman was murdered, she did not deserve her fate no matter what her lifestyle was like. I try to be as inclusive as possible because the less-than-perfect aspects of an MP’s life could well be a factor in their disappearance. I can understand it would be upsetting and embarrassing to some to have it posted online that your missing daughter or whoever has, say, a criminal record a mile long and has spent time in mental hospitals. But I don’t want to whitewash things. That doesn’t get anyone anywhere.