Earlier this week I was intrigued by the coverage of older men having sex with underage girls in Minnesota, done by MPR, courtesy of Dan Kraker:
“A courthouse shooting in Grand Marais last December shocked the small North Shore town. But the consequences now resonate far beyond the violence. The gunman was in his 30s when he was found guilty of having sex with a 15-year-old girl, and the news shed light a pattern in the town of older men sexually pursuing underage girls. A young woman, who asked not to be identified (above), said she became involved with older men but found it hard to distinguish between “new and exciting, and, ‘I’m scared; this isn’t OK.’ ” (Derek Montgomery for MPR News)
A man convicted of sex with a 15 year old girl shot three people, because he didn’t like being convicted. He shot those people, partly because it seems he didn’t see anything wrong with what he did, and partly because other people were not caught and convicted for the same thing.
He had a feeling, and he had a gun, and he felt entitled to use it, the same way far too many people wrongly feel entitled to use firearms against other people in this country when they feel aggrieved. We have murders by stalkers, we have weekly murder suicides in this country. Many of those acts of violence are committed with legally owned, legally purchased firearms.
This one event, and the excellent coverage given to it by MPR struck me for several reasons. There is a pervasive attitude towards women and towards girls, and towards sex among a segment of people in this country that is fundamentally sick, twisted, perverted. The majority of people comprising this segment are men. It struck me that this same segment tends to be very big on having and using guns, and that their gun attitudes seem to be an extension of their debased attitudes towards women, the two topics are intertwined.
We have for example, Rush Limbaugh who believes that if a young woman wishes to use contraception, even if it is not for the purpose of having committed and responsible sex, including inside marriage, that she must be a slut, a prostitute. No surprise, Rush is anti- women, at least as equal human beings, including sexually; and he is pro-gun. That would be the same sex tourist to the notorious area catering to underage women supplied to men, the trip taken with huge quantities of Viagra by Rush, who demeans women routinely, who wants to keep women in their subordinate place, and who, judging by his multiple failed marriages, has problems with intimate relationships with women.
It’s not a big reach to believe that the men in northern Minnesota who see nothing wrong with using behavior categorized as ‘grooming’ behavior to take advantage of women, women who are vulnerable and afraid when they enter these very unequal relationships. Women who clearly, as evidenced by the shootings in the Cook County Courthouse have not only the social risks to fear, but guns and gun violence to fear.
The Grand Marais story describes the sexual exploitation of women and girls. The report quoted below is from the Virginia Department of Health, from the Coordinator of the Sexual Violence Prevention program; it describes how older men younger women exploitation works perfectly, who does it, and who is vulnerable to being victimized by it. Look at the description in part 2, and then look at the Grand Marais story details:
This post continues here.