Pauline Harte

Hey, kidnapper! Send little Anthony home

Pauline Harte · April 15, 1997

It has been one week since ten-year-old Anthony Martinez was kidnapped off a street in Beaumont at knifepoint. He hasn't been seen since. There has been no word, just a "clue" that led nowhere, it seems. Anthony's mother's sobbing pleas for her son's return have not touched the kidnapper. He has not returned Anthony, and Anthony's parents are in hell, a hell created from a parent's worst nightmare.

Whoever you are, whoever kidnapped little Anthony, I'll bet you have seen at least one newscast showing Anthony's grieving, desperate parents. Doesn't their grief touch you just a little bit? Some part of you must be human, some part of you must feel SOMETHING when you see the tear-streaked faces of Anthony's parents. If you can watch them and feel nothing, then you must be a monster. Are you a monster? How are you able to walk so freely among us humans, in plain sight, without us knowing your true identity?

You must know that what you did was very wrong. Have you ever asked for help to control you cravings? If you did, then you have a conscience. Close your eyes. Listen to your humanness and do the right thing. Tell Anthony's parents about their son. It's not too late. It's never too late, even if you have done the unthinkable.

If Anthony is still alive, you can end this horrible nightmare. You don't have to play it out to the end, to Anthony's end. You have the power to release him. Isn't that true power? Ending suffering? It's so easy for some to hurt the helpless, but that is not power.

Were you powerless when you were a child? Were you abused and unloved? If that is so, Anthony had nothing to do with your pain. Monstrous acts will not alleviate the hurt in your heart. You must know that by now.

Mark Klaas, the father of kidnapped and murdered Polly Klaas, called Anthony's parents to give them words of encouragement. How kind he is! He must be suffering terribly from the loss of his own daughter. But Mark can still reach out to help other grieving parents.

That is real power. The ability to set aside one's own misery and suffering to help others is humanity at its best and most courageous.

You are human. You can feel. You are still capable of an act of humanity, no matter how many monstrous acts you have committed. Tell someone about Anthony.

So many people are looking for Anthony! They are on foot, on horses, and in planes. Even the military is involved in the search. Dogs are everywhere, looking for a scent that will lead them to Anthony.

Five hundred people are answering phones. You can call one of these volunteers and tell them about Anthony. Just make an anonymous call. It can be so simple.

Anthony's photograph has been distributed to several cities. His beautiful smile is everywhere! Have you seen Anthony smile? Have you seen the yellow ribbons of hope? Anthony should be riding his bike and playing with friends and growing up. If you still have him, let him do this.

My friends always told me that I was too paranoid about my children. They told me I was an overprotective mother. But I have always suspected that people like you walk among us undetected. I'm always paranoid. There is no Internet for my children, no "chat rooms" for them, thank you very much. You predators are everywhere! You are Everyman, Everywoman. You are Anyone. Is it really possible to be too paranoid? I think not.

Send Anthony home. Or tell his parents what has happened to their son. Even if you have done the unthinkable, they need to know.

And if anyone knows anything concerning the whereabouts of Anthony Martinez, call this number: (888) 709-7997. Anthony needs help. And prayers.

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