Janice Shaw Crouse

Police have found another young woman’s body. They think it’s Emily Sander, a missing college student in Kansas. The 18-year-old community college student apparently led a double life. She appears to be the young teenager who was also known as Zoey Zane, who posted nude photos online, appeared in two live cam shows a week and recently signed a contract for pornographic work on the Internet. She was last seen leaving a bar with a 24-year-old man whose room was later found in disarray and drenched in blood. A friend told reporters that Emily “enjoyed” posing for the pictures because “she wanted to be in the movies and she needed the extra money.”

There is an ugly thread linking Emily’s apparent death to Natalee Holloway’s disappearance while on her senior trip to Aruba and to the unimaginably gruesome death in New York City last year of Imette St. Guillen after she left a bar at 4 a.m. These sorts of tragedies bring us grief –– but our grief is mixed with rage that such a thing could happen to such beautiful young women with the potential of bright futures ahead of them.

Are young women not aware that there are sick, cruel, evil, perverted people in this world? Do they imagine that the mere threat of arrest or a lawsuit will protect them from these predators? Do they think that drunk or sick guys will respect a “no?” Where do they come up with the insane idea that they could “take care of themselves” in a struggle with a 250 pound brute or someone with a knife or gun or steel bar to force submission — someone who would, in addition, take pleasure in the pain inflicted by the attack.

Some young people seem to have a desperate need to live life “on the edge” — to chase excitement and engage in behavior that flouts death. When they are “liquored up” they make foolish decisions to drive too fast, to take foolish risks, to go where they wouldn’t otherwise venture, to associate with dangerous people — in short, to engage in perilous activities that could, and often do, end in disaster.

Janice Shaw Crouse

Janice Shaw Crouse is a former speechwriter for George H. W. Bush and now political commentator for the Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee.
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