As wicked as the actions have been and indeed still are, it is hard not to feel sympathy for them. No matter what the outcome of Operation Grange, they will always have the shadow of suspicion over them. Even if DCI Nicola Wall makes a statement blaming a deceased predator and the Queen gives them a Royal Pardon, they will never be able to shake it off.
For people with the full range of emotions, the idea of living like that would be horrendous, even without all the suspicion, they will never enjoy privacy and anonymity again. While they were imprinting the face of Maddie into the conscience of the world, they were imprinting their faces too. Doh! For them there is quite literally, no hiding place. Some might say that is punishment enough, Heck, I might even say it myself if they were not continuing to persecute Goncalo Amaral and others.
I cannot understand why they continue to keep themselves and their family in the public eye. They know how unpleasant it can be having the world's press focusing on your every move, yet they continue to invite this for themselves and vicariously for their children. Imagine how the twins must have felt to read their mother was in danger of being shot when she ran the Marathon. A ridiculous story taken from an, albeit distasteful conversation on FB, that referred to starting pistol with a little flag that said 'bang'. Those kids could and should have been protected from that nonsense, but it was their parents who were selling it!
The twins are at that self conscious age where their privacy is vital to them and it should be respected. They don't want to be different from their peers in any way, so it must be excruciating for them to see the constant 'Madeleine' headlines. And the parents can't blame Goncalo Amaral for the newspaper billboards, they are the ones who want publicity whatever the cost. Goncalo asked the Judge in Lisbon to hold the civil hearing in camera, the McCanns opposed this and newspapers ran with front pages proclaiming the twins were under threat of kidnap. Not the kind of thing a kid wants to read at the newsagents on his/her way to school.
The McCanns fear what their children may read on the internet, yet they employ a PR Agency and a professional spokesman skilled in the fine art of grabbing headlines. Not to mention the £500k they paid to Bell Pottinger to keep them on the front pages for a year. These are not the actions of caring parents.
It seems from the recent performance of Clarence Down Under, preparations are underway for the 10 year anniversary. It's a big one for sure, and one if played correctly, should really tug at the big hearts and wallets of the UK's billionaires. Perhaps Kensington Roof Garden has already been booked and the stars are being lined up? It may even have been one of metrics and deliverables on the wider agenda?
Australia might have got a mention too. Whatever the outcome, they will be looking for a new start. Their 'fame' has crossed over into the 'notoriety' range and they will need a place where they are much less well known. Unfortunately, their campaign has been so successful, there can't be many places left. Yet still they chase publicity. Clarence, far from retired from the case, is seeking out new campaign opportunities. Why a gig in Australia? Who knows, the speaker circuit is probably very competitive and the Madeleine case is his USP, but the other side of the world is not exactly convenient for those repeat bookings.
Whether the McCanns will ever seek privacy and anonymity is debateable. All their actions since the night Madeleine disappeared, suggest the opposite. At any time during the past 9 years, they could have chosen to get back to quiet unassuming lives for the sake of their remaining children.
The ten year anniversary is undoubtedly a big event, and some might see the devotion of the McCanns to their 'search' for Madeleine, and their support of Missing People as admirable. Perhaps awards are in the pipeline? Others might see it as a show of bravado, 'ah, look at those poor parents, they will never give up', and hit the paypal button. The bravado of course lies in the planning of a major event, it's as if they are saying to SY, 'we don't give a flying one what you say, we are not going to let a Fund raising opportunity pass by'. Even the discovery of blood and cadaver odour in their apartment and car, didn't stop them from going ahead with their 100 Day shindig. They really have got more front than Harrods.
Maybe we will see a new 'Awareness Campaign' for Year 10, with another