A recent email exchange with a good friend reminded me of the situation in Aruba--the missing girl. First, repeat after me: She's dead. They haven't found a body, but if you harbor any hope for her at this point I have a bridge you might be interested in. And the odds that she died swiftly and painlessly are just about zero.
Funny. Everone acknowledges that the US can be a dangerous place. And it can. Leaving a bar with a bunch of guys is plain foolhardy.
But to keep things in perspective, the US is one of the safest places on the planet. Crime makes the front page here. It's always in front of us, so it seems pervasive. But I remember someone once writing that when airplane crashes no longer make the front page, that's when you'll know that air travel is no longer safe. A couple of years ago, Matthew Shephard, a homosexual who was into rough trade, so to speak, made a play for the wrong guys in a bar and ended up dead. It should never have happened, but it did and it made the front page for months. It still does. But--There are places in the world where that sort of thing would hardly raise an eyebrow.
One of America's major exports, it seems, is wide eyed young women. They go to exotic places where they succumb to the atmosphere and allow themselves to be picked up in bars. They take bus trips through countrysides where even nuns are fair game for the local thugs. They stand in front of bulldozers as though their frail bodies can turn aside centuries of blood hatred. They chuck their razors, don Birkenstocks and sing Kumbya for the oppressed locals.
And they die.
What the hell are they thinking?
First, ladies, you've got something guys want. You know exactly what I mean. Most of us can accept "no" and it ends there. But it's a big world and a lot of guys out there could give a damn what you think about the situation. I've mentioned before the Iraq experience. The Army is very reticent about this, lest it be perceived as making an anti-women in combat statement, much as researchers shy away from the terminated pregnancy-breast cancer link lest they be perceived as being anti-abortion, but the fact is that most of the women captured in the two gulf wars were repeatedly raped. Rhonda Cornum admitted it publically a year after her release. Melissa Rathbun-Nealy has made allussions to it. You can bet your sweet posterior that faux heroine Jessica Lynch, the cute, petite little blond, was quite the prize as well.
Then there's the Middle East. If the world could fit into a teacup, the hatreds and passions in that region would overflow to fill a two quart pitcher. Yet there seems to be no shortage of starry-eyed women who want to go and protest on behalf of the poor, oppressed Palestinians (who wouldn't give a second thought to tossing a grenade in those same girls' laps if the mood struck them). Construction equipment is dangerous stuff. Large, heavy, powerful and pitiless, bulldozers also afford the operator very little view of what he's actually bulldozing. Usually that's not a problem as the mission of a bulldozer is to simply push large amounts of material around. But when idealistic young women decide to stand in fron of one, things get ugly quickly. I'm sure that Rachel Corrie's parents taught her to look both ways before crossing the street, but they neglected to tell her that standing in front of a bulldozer in a region where people could teach us a thing or two about hate is just plain stupid.
By all means hit the deepest recesses of some undeveloped country to show your solidarity with the poor oppressed nobles. Uninhibited by our mores, they'll thank you for your kindness by raping you to death and then shoving your bloodied remains into a trash bin.