Saw a headline of a story today about a letter arriving from a teen missing for five years. Family thinks it might be her.
It caused an idea that seemed worth kicking around; especially among those who've had to struggle for their intellectual independence with family and friends.
My thought was that some individuals and ultimately society might benefit from a safe, legal means of entering a protection program (paid for by the individual, not government) similar to 'witness protection'. It would be a voluntary move to dissociate with all familial and social ties for a designated period or forever under a different, protected identity.
Families and friends, though perhaps offended by rejection, wouldn't have to worry about the welfare or safety of loved ones choosing this very independent way of breaking loose. When people just disappear or become intellectually blinded by membership in religious or political cults or commit suicide a lot of suffering is caused unnecessarily.
If a person can show no criminal history, that they're productive and independent and have reached age of consent, it should qualify them for 'emancipation on steroids' from a family or religious/social culture they find irritating or annoying. An entirely new, protected identity would be freedom and 're-birth' of a sort for those who would otherwise find worry about their fate among those friends and relatives to be intolerable and disqualifying.
The emancipation/protection program could be set for a term of years, at the discretion of the individual who simply wants to become free intellectually without annoying emotional ties and presence of inhibiting meddlers.
Why should witnesses to crimes be privileged to take up new lives when many people might salvage their own lives free of pathogenic circumstances? Not everyone has the strong pull toward self-assertion in an entirely new environment, but it could prevent many run-aways and suicides.
Just sort of thinking out loud. Thoughts?