Not sure how long this entry will be but I will try to make it worth your while . . .
Last year’s Q & A, as I detailed in the episode, was a spur of the moment thing. It happened because of not one but two guests who flaked on me. You should know—neither one of them ever ended up being on the program. It turned out the reasons they gave me were actually excuses. It happens . . .
Then, one of my assistants suggested I do a Q & A or Ask Me Anything Episode. Something I had never thought of. However, the assistant pointed out that viewers on the Live Show loved to ask me questions and they enjoyed hearing my answers. So . . .
. . . the Q & A episode was born.
The first one from April 2019 was under two hours long. Like I said, though, it was done without a lot of planning.
This one, though, I had it planned for about a month. So I had the chance to go back through the Live Shows for the last six months and make a list of all the questions I had gotten. And looking at them, I am reminded of how insightful the listeners can be. They come up with questions that would never occur to me. That’s what makes them so fun to answer.
However, as you know, it’s not all about the fun to me. What also impresses me is when the questions also allow me to give some insight about Unfound, its disappearances, and theories behind missing persons cases. LOVE those questions. They really allow me to examine my own thoughts to see if they make sense.
Likewise, as I continue to say, and I said so at the end of the episode, Unfound is about education. We want to become the thought leader in regards to disappearances. We believe this is the way more of these cases will get solved. On top of that, we hope this leads to fewer cases overall.
But it’s going to take some time. We have to be patient.
As for some of the questions themselves, the NAMUS one really stuck out to me—maybe you could tell by the length of time it took to answer it. This one really spoke to me because I could remember back in the day when I would spend HOURS trying to match missing people with unidentified remains on that website. Of course, when I was doing it—like 10 years ago, there were a lot less cases on there. So it was even more difficult to match people with remains then than it is now. And still . . . it’s very very difficult.
Seriously, when I first started trying to do that back then, I thought, “This should be a piece of cake.” Then one day went to the next. To the next. To the next. And months later, I still hadn’t matched up anything.
So, for those of you out there, I feel you. But do not give up—I continue to believe that some of you will be successful if you work on it long enough. It should become a bit easier as more and more cases and remains are listed on NAMUS.
Another question that sticks out is the one about my family and how they feel about what I do. My guess is that many listeners thought I would answer by saying, “Oh yeah, they love it. They tune in every week. They are so impressed with me trying to help these families.”
Nope. Not quite. That is NOT an indictment of my family. At least I don’t think so. They have their own lives. Their own jobs. And as I said while answering the question, I don’t really ask them too much about the work they’re doing. So it’s weird that I would expect them to ask about mine.
However, I stick by what I also said—my mother listened every week. She was the one who really took an interest in Unfound and we spoke about many of the disappearances often.
Do I think that will ever change with my family? I really don’t know. I really don’t think about it. I suppose if I were to end up hosting a missing persons tv program. Or ended up, as I talked about toward the end, appearing on tv as a special guest when a disappearance gets national attention? Then sure, I am sure my family would say they saw me, etc. Otherwise, Unfound just doesn’t come up much. And that’s fine.
The other question that I think was extremely important was the one about parents killing their children—back then vs. now. The perception is surely that many more children are being murdered by their parents in 2020, compared to 2010. Or 2000. Or 1973.
Yet, the stats do not support that. They just don’t. All sorts of violent crime have declined since I was born in 1970.
Why is that? And why is the perception different? Those are two questions I didn’t answer. And I will attempt to do that here.
From what I’ve read, the main reason crime has gone down in the USA is because criminals are caught a lot quicker than they used to be. To put it another way, what the stats are saying is it very well may be that the same percentage of the population commits crimes in 2020 as it was in 1970. So, it’s not like we’ve become a “nicer” society.
Instead, due to DNA and video cameras and a whole host of other police techniques, criminals can be caught quicker, not allowing them to commit a crime again, thus raising the crime rate.
Unfortunately, what I’m also saying is I don’t believe our “nature” has changed. I do not believe that we are inherently nicer or more peaceful humans than 50 years. Nothing I’ve seen tells me that. I mean, all you have to do is read any Comments section for virtually any online article out there and it eventually descends into people making threats against each other.
So, crime is down . . . but our human tendencies are the same.
Then why is our perception different? One reason: media. Of all types. Entertainment. Politics. Religion. World events. Sports. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc. Etc. All of it, unfortunately, markets to our most basic of emotions—fear, excitement, love, and hate. Always. NEVER to our rational side—only to our emotional one.
Why is that? Because peace doesn’t sell—Megadeth was on to something (you can look that up). Boredom doesn’t sell. The monotony of every day life doesn’t sell.
All of you must remember something. It wasn’t that long ago that people got their news from newspapers that were delivered once a day and the nightly news which was a half hour long. That’s it . . . THAT’S IT.
Now? We can’t get away from news. We have the 24/7 cycle. The problem? The world isn’t any bigger. There is no more going on now in 2020 than there was in 1970.
Well, all that time has to be filled with . . . stuff. And the quality of the news degraded from there. Along the way, the news business figured out that if it could be just like the fiction tv shows with drama and suspense and teasers before commercials, etc. etc. etc., that the news programs could be must-watch tv. This is what we have in the 21st century.
Then, it’s no wonder that people’s perceptions of reality end up getting skewed—like how the public perceives crime, for example.
So, please trust me when I say that the world we live in is safer than it has ever been since the 1950’s. That doesn’t mean bad things don’t happen. It doesn’t mean it will continue to be this way. All it means is this is how it is right now.
As for those personal questions . . .
Yes, I get a few of those. I get way more than I mentioned in the episode. People are . . . curious. And that’s fine. I get it. So I chose the questions—like the family one—to cover all the bases. Family, humor, and my relationship status.
But I think the most important point about all of those questions and the topic itself is that the person you hear on that episode, that you see on the Live Show and/or the Think Tank, that you read here that you hear during the interviews is exactly the person I really am. It is not a facade. It is not a “character”. It is not a put-on. It is not a role I play, then I go back to “being me” when I shut the microphone or camera off. The person I am when you see/hear me is the same person I am everywhere else.
If you doubt me, just ask my assistants. Please do. They’ve interacted with me way more than anybody else associated with Unfound. I think if you’d talk to them, these are some of the words they’d use:
They will tell you that they can criticize me and make fun of me, and it never gets to me. In fact, many times I’ll join in making fun of myself. There is no ego or pride here when it comes to Unfound. In fact, as you will soon see (not to give too much away), I am possibly going to be giving my assistants a lot more power and exposure when it comes to Unfound—we’re still talking those things out. And I’m not intimidated at all. I don’t need the spotlight. All that is important to me is that my vision for Unfound continues to be enacted. That’s all.
However, when it comes to my personal life and Unfound, here are a few rules I will never break:
–no romantic relationships with assistants.
–no romantic relationships with guests.
–no romantic relationships with listeners.
Never. Ever. NEVER. EVER. Because it’s just wrong. Breaking any of those rules would degrade the professionalism that I try to bring to Unfound.
Why do I think I need to mention that? Because I know firsthand how many podcast hosts go to CrimeCon for the purpose of breaking those rules. Ahem. One more reason you will never see me at any conventions—because they are created for all the wrong reasons. Nothing happens at them that interests us at Unfound at all.
Do the answers to some of those personal questions make me overtly unique? Probably. I am certainly not an alpha male—I don’t care that much about leading, although I know I must do so in the position I am in. Am I a beta male? I’m not that either because I don’t like to follow. In fact, to be honest, I am sure many of my long time friends are still trying to figure me out.
But overall, I enjoyed doing the Q & A episode. I will continue to answer your questions every Wednesday night at 9pm ET on YouTube. Then, a year from now, you’ll get another one of these Q & A episode. I look forward to it.
Thanks for reading! Thanks for the support! Stay away from the virus!
By Edward Dentzel, April 7th 2020