Twenty one years ago, an 18-year-old man entered a women’s restroom at a business where I worked. If I had seen him enter the ladies’ room, I would have been expected to confront him and drive him out.
Nowadays, in certain jurisdictions, he could sue me and my employer for expelling him from a room where women and girls pull their panties down. He might be able to recruit government prosecutors to punish us, without hiring a lawyer of his own. And the policy of several faddish corporations is to leave such men to choose whichever restroom they prefer, no questions asked.
That man’s name is Jeremy Strohmeyer, and there is no reasonable prospect of him suing me in the future, because he is currently serving life without parole in a state penitentiary for the crimes he committed in that restroom on May 25, 1997.
He was preceded in the ladies’ room by seven-year-old Sherrice “Sherry” Iverson. She was mischievous and unsupervised, a handful. Her nearby father and teenage brother had no interest in following her around to protect her. Neither did anybody else. Strohmeyer was interested enough to follow her into the restroom, but not to protect her.
He raped her, strangled her in a stall and, when she nevertheless showed some signs of life, went back and snapped her neck. He stuffed her tiny body between the commode and the wall, and left her there for my co-worker to discover in the morning.
She would have been 28 this year, perhaps a young mother in the prime of life. Instead, there is no trace of her. Her father died within a few years of her murder. When a big-city newspaper published an article on the 20th anniversary of her killing, reporters couldn’t find her mother, and couldn’t find anybody who knew what became of her. She was surrounded by community organizers for a few years, stood in front of a few television cameras, then disappeared from the South Central Los Angeles ghetto in which she raised Sherry for seven years. And so there is nobody left to speak for Sherry, or about her.
Security personnel reconstructed the sequence of the crime later, based on video recorded by a surveillance camera mounted outside the ladies’ room. But there was an eyewitness inside, too. Strohmeyer’s traveling companion David Cash followed him into the ladies’ room and peered over a partition into the stall where Strohmeyer was muscling Sherry and stifling her screams by clenching her mouth.
When Strohmeyer seemed too preoccupied to engage in chitchat with Cash, he (Cash) left the restroom without intervening. He never notified security or police of the assault in progress. After Strohmeyer came out of the restroom and rejoined Cash, he told Cash he had killed the little girl. Cash never reported his friend to police.
Strohmeyer is spending the rest of his life in prison, but Cash never suffered any legal penalty for his indifference to the victimization of Sherry Iverson. Prosecutors said there was no law against what Cash failed to do. That has changed, but too late to prosecute him. Cash is apparently having a great life. He was accepted into Berkeley’s nuclear engineering program, graduated, and has had some very nice jobs in his native California, mostly in the public sector. He’ll be 40 next year.
There was considerable public outrage about the impunity of a man who casually shrugged off the horrific rape and murder of a child he could and should have protected. But how different are corporate executives and government officials who empower the potential Strohmeyers of 2018 enter women’s public restrooms at will? Like David Cash, they act on extravagant personal loyalty to friends and allies, and are utterly indifferent to the victimization of strangers. It was just Sherry Iverson’s tough luck that she lived outside Cash’s orbit of friendships, and it’s too bad for women and children that Target and Walgreen corporate executives and Liberal politicians are unmoved to protect them during their most vulnerable moments on company premises.
If a corporation wants to build lockable unisex restrooms for customers and staff, I have no firm opinion about that. I would rather not pay higher retail prices to fund the accommodation of sexual pathology, but at least it would protect women and girls from the menace of voyeurs and assailants. It’s a reasonable judgment call by management. That’s different from the reckless proposition of inviting men to share restrooms with women and girls, immunized against any intervention or questioning by security or retail staff.
“Sexual crimes are often crimes of opportunity,” wrote Christian activist Andy Parrish. “Allowing grown men in the girls bathroom increases the opportunity for sexual crimes. I choose my daughters’ safety over the convenience of shopping at Target.”
Over 1.4 million people have pledged to honor the American Family Association’s boycott against Target. But why do any Christians shop at Target or Walgreens anymore? It suggests that we have been compromised by materialism. In other words, we have subordinated our Christian values to our consumption, not vice versa. But it’s also because Liberals have been successful at framing the issue as a matter of compassion for pathetic transgenders.
When Christian activists published a list of 21 incidents in which male intruders victimized women and girls in public restrooms, Liberals replied that none of the 21 assailants and voyeurs were transgendered people. Even if we concede this is true, it would only vindicate the harmlessness of transgendered people in unprotected restrooms. It would not vindicate the safety of permitting adult or adolescent males to enter women’s and girls’ restrooms. The 21 incidents remain serious with or without absolutely autonomous transgenders circulating among the restrooms.
It may be true that transgenders are innocent of most violent attacks and voyeurism in ladies’ restrooms. But they and their Liberal allies are not innocent of making common cause with rapists and voyeurs in seeking restroom policies of mutual benefit. Of this, they are guilty.
My hat is off to Christian activist groups like One Million Moms and the American Family Association. But I don’t think U.S. consumer behavior is going to be shaped by inoffensive people following Marquess of Queensberry rules. Target and Walgreens and ilk need to face enormous photographs of young Sherry Iverson at their entrances every May 25. Bullhorns should greet stockholders as they arrive their annual meetings. Do you know how and when to request that your governor declare an annual Sherrice Iverson Day every May 25? If not, can you afford to hire a lawyer or a lobbyist to request it for you? It would be an opportunity to remember young Sherry, but also to remember Jeremy Strohmeyer and David Cash.
The depraved constituency for unprotected restrooms should have to earn it every year. An annual Sherry Iverson memorial would keep the issue fresh and correctly focused. The transgender restroom activists share David Cash’s indifference to unknown victims, and they should be identified as his disciples, year after year.
Whenever a municipal or state body takes up a proposal to give adult men free access to women’s restrooms, opponents should always refer to it as Strohmeyer’s Law. This would properly frame it as an issue of women’s and girls’ safety. Whenever officials or commentators are dismissive of safety concerns in deregulated women’s restrooms, they should be challenged to distinguish their position from David Cash’s position. What comes first for these people – their friendships and alliances with sexually confused men, or the protection of physically vulnerable women and girls?
Should men like Strohmeyer and Cash be allowed to enter your daughters’ restroom unchallenged? Liberals may hedge, but their policies most emphatically say yes.