This is an excerpt from “Don’t Believe It! How Lies Become News” by Alexandra Kitty.
Only the Strong Survive (snippet from Chapter Nine: Fear, Stereotypes, and Myths)
Crime and tragedy befall many people, yet not all their stories make the news. So what separates newsworthy grief from the nameless variety? The newsworthy misfortune should be violent, cruel, unexpected and have a photogenic and winsome victim.
A crime meeting those requirements befell a young, attractive, upwardly mobile Boston couple expecting their first child. A husband and his pregnant lawyer wife seemed to be doing everything right, yet something went horribly wrong on their way home from the hospital. To the middle class posse, it was an unspeakable crime: nice, well-heeled couples weren’t supposed to get attacked after attending a birthing class.
The chilling details were recounted in the October 24, 1989 edition of the Boston Globe:
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A Reading man and his pregnant wife were shot in Roxbury last night by a gunman who forced his way into their car after the couple left Brigham and Women’s Hospital.