Smart said she "felt so dirty and so filthy" after she was raped by her captor, and she understands why someone wouldn't run "because of that alone."
Smart spoke at a Johns Hopkins human trafficking forum, saying she was raised in a religious household and recalled a school teacher who spoke once about abstinence and compared sex to chewing gum.
"I thought, 'Oh, my gosh, I'm that chewed up piece of gum, nobody re-chews a piece of gum, you throw it away.' And that's how easy it is to feel like you know longer have worth, you know longer have value," Smart said. "Why would it even be worth screaming out? Why would it even make a difference if you are rescued? Your life still has no value."
I knew that abstinence-only sex ed was built on lies and ineffective, but I didn't quite understand how damaging it is to the girls who are subject to it.
Smart is now employed as an expert by ABC news, so it will be interesting to hear her take on the story of the three girls found in Cleveland, though I doubt it will top the great interview with the guy who found them.
Karzai Says He Was Assured C.I.A. Would Continue Delivering Bags of Cash
KABUL, Afghanistan — The C.I.A.'s station chief here met with President Hamid Karzai on Saturday, and the Afghan leader said he had been assured that the agency would continue dropping off stacks of cash at his office despite a storm of criticism that has erupted since the payments were disclosed.
The C.I.A. money, Mr. Karzai told reporters, was "an easy source of petty cash," and some of it was used to pay off members of the political elite, a group dominated by warlords.
The use of the C.I.A. cash for payoffs has prompted criticism from many Afghans and some American and European officials, who complain that the agency, in its quest to maintain access and influence at the presidential palace, financed what is essentially a presidential slush fund. The practice, the officials say, effectively undercut a pillar of the American war strategy: the building of a clean and credible Afghan government to wean popular support from the Taliban.
Instead, corruption at the highest levels seems to have only worsened. The International Monetary Fund recently warned diplomats in Kabul that the Afghan government faced a potentially severe budget shortfall partly because of the increasing theft of customs duties and officially abetted tax evasion.
On Saturday, Mr. Karzai sought to dampen the furor over the payments, describing them as one facet of the billions of dollars in aid Afghanistan receives each year. "This is nothing unusual," he said…
Which reminded me that I'd bookmarked, but never posted, a related article at the end of April:
KABUL, Afghanistan — It is always hard to gauge what diplomats really think unless one of their cables ends up on WikiLeaks, but every once in a while, the barriers fall and a bit of truth slips into public view…
…[O]ne of those rare truth-telling moments came at a farewell cocktail party last week hosted by the departing French ambassador to Kabul: Bernard Bajolet, who is leaving to head France's Direction Génerale de la Sécurité Extérieure, its foreign intelligence service.
After the white-coated staff passed the third round of hors d'oeuvres, Mr. Bajolet took the lectern and laid out a picture of how France — a country plagued by a slow economy, waning public support for the Afghan endeavor and demands from other foreign conflicts, including Syria and North Africa — looked at Afghanistan….
That the Afghan project is on thin ice and that, collectively, the West was responsible for a chunk of what went wrong, though much of the rest the Afghans were responsible for. That the West had done a good job of fighting terrorism, but that most of that was done on Pakistani soil, not on the Afghan side of the border. And that without fundamental changes in how Afghanistan did business, the Afghan government, and by extension the West's investment in it, would come to little.
His tone was neither shrill nor reproachful. It was matter-of-fact.
"I still cannot understand how we, the international community, and the Afghan government have managed to arrive at a situation in which everything is coming together in 2014 — elections, new president, economic transition, military transition and all this — whereas the negotiations for the peace process have not really started," Mr. Bajolet said in his opening comments…
"We should be lucid: a country that depends almost entirely on the international community for the salaries of its soldiers and policemen, for most of its investments and partly on it for its current civil expenditure, cannot be really independent."
I do not pretend to understand what these trends might portend in the larger world, but one thing's pretty clear: the Very Serious Persons responsible for publishing the NYTimes are beyond bored with the whole "Afghanistan (Graveyard of Empires) Adventure". As far as they're concerned, it's time to cut our losses and move the Risk markers to a new, less predictable failure arena. Syria? Iran? North Korea? Who cares, as long as it's novel!
Stupidest Shithole in America: Burkesville, Kentucky - (It's our fourth entry in this new series. The first three were Nelson, Georgia;Mississippi; and Dietrich, Idaho.)
No, I'm not making light of the tragedy. Seriously, this is the sort of insanity we're dealing with:
Last Monday, Kristian Sparks and his sister, Caroline, visited a Fred's Super Dollar store here. A store manager recalled that it was an ordinary shopping trip, saying that the boy was outgoing and energetic, his little sister was cute and their grandmother was "like any grandmother — she bought them anything they wanted."The next day Kristian, 5, shot and killed his 2-year-old sister with a gun marketed for children as "My First Rifle" in what the authorities said was an accident.The death has convulsed this rural community of 1,800 in south-central Kentucky, where everyone seems to know the extended Sparks family, which is now riven by grief. But as mourners gathered for Caroline's funeral on Saturday, there were equally strong emotions directed at the outside world, which has been quick to pass judgment on the parents and a way of life in which many see nothing unusual about introducing children to firearms while they are still in kindergarten.
TEXAS FERTILIZER PLANT CONTINUES TO EXPRESS ITS FREEDOM
Remember when a Texas fertilizer plant exploded and showered its Freedom all over the town of West, Texas, teaching everyone a much-needed lesson on the uselessness of state regulations? Well the lesson is not over yet, because it turns out that the plant only had $1,000,000 in liability coverage and caused over $100,000,000 in damages.From the Dallas Morning News:
An attorney for United States Fire Insurance Co. of Morristown, N.J., confirmed Friday that West Fertilizer had $1 million in liability coverage "with no excess or umbrella coverage."
Fertilizer facilities like the one in West are not required to have liability insurance that would compensate for damage they might cause, state insurance officials say, even if hazardous material is on hand.
It's fine though, the free market system will step in and magically fix all the damages. Everyone knows that this is how it works. The town can take the million dollars and divide it between their lawyers, the plant's lawyers, the 200 injured people and the families of the fifteen who were killed. Your Wonkette is not good at math so help us out, what is $1,000,000 divided by two lawyers plus 200 injured plus fifteen dead people? Answer: "not very much."
States that have requirements often set amounts that "tend to be much less than the potential harm," [Tom] Baker, [insurance and risk expert at the University of Pennsylvania law school] said. When told about the $1 million, he said, "Wow. That's not very much, is it?"
No Tom, it is actually "not very much," thanks for helping out!