read this amazing letter to the editor that ran in the Eastern Arizona Courier the other day. So glad it was forwarded to me. Voila:
I am writing this because I am tired of seeing young men’s lives destroyed.
Young men, there’s a real danger out there you need to be aware of that can destroy your lives forever. That danger is young girls wanting to be popular by dating older guys. You know the ones, those who want to be known as the girl with the more mature boyfriend. It may even be that her mother thinks it is kind of cute that her young daughter can attract an older boy. She may not even mind your spending a lot of time alone with her younger daughter or even your spending the night at their home. It may even be that this young woman is sending explicit pictures to you and your friends on her cell phone.
I know you are probably saying, “What is wrong with this? Her mother does not seem to mind my being with her daughter.” This, however, is where the danger lies. You see, it does not matter what this mother lets her daughter do. If you allow yourself to fall into the trap of being sexually involved with this young woman in any way, your life will be destroyed forever. It does not matter that you have not done anything like this in the past or that you are known to most people as a great young man who is a hard worker and loves his family. It does not matter that you have many friends you have helped and have been of service to. I say it does not matter because in the eyes of the law you have committed a very serious crime and will be treated as a dangerous criminal with no value to society.
You will soon be known by some new names. These are sex offender, predator, child molester or pedophile. People will start treating you differently. Your employer, who has always been pleased with your work performance, will bow to public pressure and tell you that you no longer have a job.
Oh, and you can forget about finding another job because everyone who does a background check on you will see that you have been arrested for a sex crime. The newspaper wanting a front-page story will run your picture and write about how you took advantage of this innocent little girl. Strangers will come up to you on the street and threaten you. Others will call you on the phone and taunt you. Law enforcement will discourage them from doing this but will do little to help you. You and your family will spend thousands of dollars defending you in court and paying for damages done to your vehicles by this young woman’s family.
If you are lucky, you may get only three to five years in prison, but you could get up to 50 years or more. Then if you are lucky enough to get out of prison alive and not warped by years of being around hardened criminals, you now get to register as a sex offender. Everywhere you go, your picture will be published in the newspaper so people will know to avoid you. If you are lucky, no one will harm you.
For the rest of your life, you will not be allowed to be with any females under the age of 18 without being supervised. You will not be able to go to a public park or swimming pool. You will not be able to see your children participate in school activities or sporting events. You will not be able to go to the toy aisle at Wal-Mart so your children can show you what they want for Christmas.
You will have to pay hundreds of dollars a month in probation and counseling fees for the rest of your life. You will only be able to work in certain jobs and live in certain neighborhoods. I could go on and on, but I think you get the picture.
Hopefully, young men and you parents of young men will heed my warning and wake up to the danger that surrounds you. My heart goes out to those young men who have fallen into this trap, and to their families and friends who know their true characters.