You, me and (Spitzer’s) Dupree: Was Ashley Alexandra a victim?
BY PAUL KAIHLA — Alan Dershowitz, who was one of Eliot Spitzer’s law professors at Harvard, told CNN the day before the governor announced his resignation that the media and public were blowing this sex scandal way out of proportion — and that it constituted a “victimless crime”:
“Remember, the corruption (Spitzer) fought was mostly corruption with victims,” he said. “People who were corrupting Wall Street, violent crimes, organized crimes. This is the personification of a victimless crime — a 30-something-year-old prostitute making $5,000 an hour. That is not a victim.”
Well, now we know that Spitzer’s main sexcort was young enough to be his daughter: Ashley Alexandra Dupre, 22 was forced out of a “broken home” in New Jersey at 17 by abuse, then lived in five different states and suffered a drug addiction before landing a gig with a New York sex service.
Did the circumstances that the universe dealt Ashley, and the grey-matter she was born with upstairs, set her up for exploitation?
What do we mean by the middle part of that question? The level of intellectual awareness that Ashley displayed on her MySpace page — to put it politely — was disappointing. But the hurts, hopes and openness she put out there are deeply touching:
“I have been alone. I have abused drugs. I have been broke and homeless. But, I survived, on my own…” she wrote. “But I made it. I’m still here and I love who I am.”
If life circumstances had victimized Ashley to the point that she was driven into prostitution, maybe the Spitzer scandal is now a blessing in disguise. Currently America’s most famous femme fatale, her MySpace page had four million hits this week (before she pulled her personal posts about life).
And her notoriety may translate into the same kind of breaks that have vaulted careers from Amy Fisher to Paris Hilton. She’ll certainly get offers from tabloids, Playboy and God knows what.
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