15 Iyar 5779 / Monday, May 20, 2019 | Torah Reading: Bechukotai
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Sex and the Serial Killer    

Sex and the Serial Killer

Psychotherapist Mary Anne Layden from the University of Pennsylvania, claims: “Pornography has been a factor in every case of sexual violence.” Elliott Rodger was no exception...


Elliott was a typical 22-year-old in many ways. He had girls on the brain 24 hours a day. He especially loved blondes; he would daydream about their long, luxurious, platinum hair and wished he could run his fingers through those golden locks. Like most young guys these days, Elliott was obsessed with sex. It would seem that he had more going for him than most: he was the son of a successful Hollywood director. He drove a BMW. He was good looking. He had a wardrobe most would be envious of.
However, there was one problem- Elliott couldn't attract the interest of a single girl.
And for the life of him, he couldn't understand why. All he knew is that he wanted more than anything to be intimate with girls.
Eventually, his growing frustration led to deadly consequences. After being fed up with his lack of a sex life and being repeatedly turned down by gorgeous blondes that wanted nothing to do with him, he decided to get revenge.
His self-centered desires led him to go on a killing spree, killing six and injuring several more. Elliott Rodger died in a shoot-out with the police.
If you've been following this story, it would seem like a typical serial-killer scenario. A seemingly anti-social guy, quiet, whom no one really knew well, decides to one day take revenge on the world for making his life so unfair.
And in a way, it follows this pattern. However, there is something deeper going on that puts everyone at risk, albeit in a different way.
Looking at Rodger's manifesto, one main theme runs through the entire writing: his main goal in life was to score with women. He wasn't interested in love, in a committed relationship, in anything real. All he wanted was to be a guy with tons of girls on his roster, a different one for each night. He viewed the young women around him as nothing more than objects to be used for his pleasure.
Yes, Rodger was obviously a sick and psychotic person. But let's put that aside for a moment. I want to focus on what he was exposed to on a daily basis, as most young men are exposed to the same contaminant.
Did you guess what contaminant I'm talking about?
The media.
How many hours of sex and violence is a young person exposed to every day? In one afternoon/evening, a couch potato could watch literally thousands of frames related to sex- from under-dressed women to outright intimacy in all its degraded glory. And the killing/violence is the main component that keeps TV and movies interesting.
More than television, however, the internet is breeding millions of potential Elliott Rodgers every day. You may say I'm being extreme, but think about this: who knows which person has the potential to resort to violence if they are frustrated enough? Many killers look and act like normal, even friendly, people.
Aside from bringing out the absolute worst in people, the internet has created an addiction that is engulfing millions of men and women in its abyss: the addiction to pornography. It goes without say that this addiction has ruined the lives of millions of men and the lives of their wives and children. Even if a man or woman is not addicted to such websites filled with complete tum'ah (spiritual filth), the simple act of going to these sites once in a while is enough to kill them and their relationship with their families.
So how many people visit porn sites each month? Gail Dines, a sociology and women's studies professor says, “Porn sites get more visitors per month than Netflix, Amazon, and Twitter combined. One third of all downloads contain porn and the Internet hosts 4.2 million porn websites.”
The fact that pornography tears apart families is sad enough- but there are even more serious consequences. Mary Anne Layden, a psychotherapist who specializes in sexual trauma at the University of Pennsylvania, claims: “Pornography has been a factor in every case of sexual violence” that she has treated. Furthermore, she says, “The earlier males are exposed to pornography, the more likely they are to engage in non-consensual sex. The more pornography females use, the more likely they are to be victims of non-consensual sex.”
It is obvious that parents who give their kids free reign to use unrestricted internet are putting their children in serious, potentially life-threatening danger. But this is just one aspect of a larger problem.
The larger problem, I believe, is the progressively decaying morals of society in general. What morals, you ask? Good question. I think the answer is precisely in that question. These days, anything goes. Everything is okay. Whatever you want to do, more power to you. If it feels good for you, go for it! And cliché after cliché after cliché.
Except that this is really what life has become. People have become so concerned with living their lives for themselves, they don't know how to make room in their hearts for others. We have become a cold-hearted, depraved, and self-centered society.
So what is a parent supposed to do if he wants to prevent his children from growing up in such a laissez-faire world? In my mind, there are two options:
a) build an underground cave in your home and hide your kids there until, well, indefinitely
b) pack up and move to a family-oriented, child-nurturing, Torah-observant community in Israel 

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