When I first read about this story, I was struck by the discussions and number of comments that returned to the same question - why did she go on that submarine alone with a stranger?
To which, the only response can be - why shouldn't she have? Would you have asked the same question if she were a man? Should she have changed her behaviour, not done her job, because she was a woman?
It was this reaction to the crime that inspired me to write Under the Radar. Regardless of the abhorrent actions of Madsen, there is a portion of society who resort to blaming the victim, an extension of questioning rape victims' veracity because they were dressed in revealing clothes or under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Should a woman's behaviour change because of how a man might react? Should we go further and suggest women shouldn't step into a taxi alone, or go home with a man, or feel free to walk home on her own? Should a woman ever feellike she has to behave differently to a man?
It may be coincidence, but only a year before, a recording of the future President of the United States was released with him bragging about how he approached women and that, because he was famous, he 'can do anything. Grab 'em by the pussy. You can do anything.'