Let me add my voice to the chorus of those expressing their happiness that Elizabeth Smart has been found. She is now home and safe. We are all very glad that this situation has worked out for the best.
I said to Merrin last night, "This goes against everything we have learned about child abduction." She agreed and I kinda got to thinking about it in a more critical way.
You can call me a skeptic and I guess –to some degree– I am. But from the very beginning of this case, I told Merrin that I did not believe that she had been kidnapped. There was very little physical evidence to support the charge. In fact, most of the kidnapping evidence amounts to a) her sister said she was kidnapped and b) she was missing.
Again, perhaps I'm just a skeptic, but it just doesn't seem to add up.
I hope that I am wrong. I hope that I am proved to be a fool. I will sing it from the mountain tops.
That being said, let me give you a hypothetical. A young, scared fourteen year-old girl from a Mormon home disappears for almost exactly nine months.
Since this is strictly my own hypothetical, let's just assume –by whatever means– young Elizabeth became pregnant. She runs away from home or is encouraged to run away from home. She ends up staying for nine months with a man who her father had previously employed in their home. After nine months, she is found less than 15 miles from her home thanks to a "timely tip" from an area resident.
I have only circumstantial evidence to support my theory, but I think I'm close to creating a plausible scenario. For example, there are pictures being shown on CNN & other outlets of a girl in a veil with the "suspected kidnapper" at a party. She does not appear to be restrained in any way. Under disguise in a very public environment, couldn't she have run away from her abductor or at least cried out to any of the hundreds of people in attendance? While we have heard nothing about how she was "held", Elizabeth was found unrestrained with her "kidnapper". So, on at least two occasions, Elizabeth was unrestrained in public. Perhaps she did try to flee from her "kidnapper" on other occasions, but these two public appearances seem to cast some doubt on that — at least to me.
Like I said, I hope I'm wrong. I'm probably wrong. But, I don't think it would be the first time that a young girl has run away. It wouldn't be the first time a girl has gotten pregnant and run away. And, if you believe some of the first-hand stories from online journals, it certainly wouldn't be the first time a young Mormon girl has gotten pregnant and run away (or worse yet) been sent away by her family.
I hope I'm wrong, but it kinda makes you wonder, doesn't it?