The better part of a century ago, Albert Einstein stated that insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results.
On the heels of this week's report that two female foreign journalists covering unrest in Egypt were sexually assaulted, then, I can only conclude that the women of modern Western media are certifiably insane.
Is it misguided feminist ideals, blind pride or genuine failure to understand the middle eastern culture that drives women to keep taking assignments that are clearly prescriptions for rape and vicious beatings?
The law has stripped men of their authority to deny women assignments or postings because of their gender, however dangerous or foolish they identify the placement to be. Therefore, it is up to women to show the common sense and grasp on reality necessary to prevent this recurring nightmare.
So where is it?
What twisted sense of logic causes them to sacrifice respect and the potential for continued achievement for convalescent leave and long-term relationships with shrinks, physical therapists and pain killers?
Good leaders clearly see and accept reality; it is the only way they can define reality for others and lead the way through it to something better. If women want to be involved in shaping truth and leading change, they need to open their eyes to reality as it exists now and make their choices accordingly.
I don't mean to sound harsh or unsympathetic - these women suffered painful ordeals. But they were entirely predictable, avoidable ordeals following a clearly established precedent.
Let's stop the cycle. Stop sending female correspondents into chaos zones where they are considered without value and prime targets. Stop pretending it's chauvinism or favoritism or anything but common sense when editors and directors give male journalists the middle eastern assignments. Insanity is a choice - so let's get off the sick cycle carousel for good.