So what has been the lead story on every network, the front page of every newspaper and the most popular discussion topic on the Internet? That's right, it's the Ray Rice story.

In case you just got back from a deep space mission, here's the low lights you may have missed.

Ray Rice, running back for the Baltimore Thugs Ravens cold-cocked his then girlfriend or fiancé or whatever she was. He laid her out inside an elevator. It was brutal. Knocked her out with one punch. So we know Ray is a stand up guy.

But instead of leaving him and pressing charges, she all but excuses him, defends him and then marries him. Any bets on how long that will last or if she survives it?

I'm not excusing his behavior. In fact, he should be rotting in a cell. I am however positing that he is a product of his environment – of the increasingly depraved culture of modern American society.

Just look around. Gangs are going around beating on innocent victims just for the fun of it. Reality TV they gets raunchier and more graphic each year. Movies and music glorify violence and describe women as nothing but b**ches and hoes.

Honestly, what do we expect will happen? Rice obviously doesn't respect his new wife, and doubtful it's just her. I'm sure to him, and many others like him, women are just possessions or playthings, and it's sad to say that many young women probably believe themselves to be not much more than that.

It seems that many young women believe that this is what they must put up with to obtain the money and status of "the good life."

And then I saw this. It's an article by the Daily Mail reviewing an upcoming TV program entitled "Daddies Date Babies."

The girls trade sex and "companionship" for financial stability. The older men evidently pay for the "novelty" of the much younger women. The men are called "Sugar Daddies," of course, and the girls – "Sugar Babies." And when I say much younger, I mean teenage to no more than mid-20s, many being college girls.

If you are of sound mind, you might say, what girl would sign up for this? Well, MailOnline reports that there are about eight girls for every man on the site. One 25-year-old girl said, "I got into sugar babying because I didn't have a job, had graduated from college, and needed money. It seemed easier than bartending. It seemed like a very available option. It seemed easy to fall into."

But it's not all fun, games and cash. At least one of the young women interviewed admitted being raped.

Some, however, think it's a perfectly grand arrangement in pursuit of the almighty dollar. One girl is quoted saying, "The only way I will accept it working is if I'm given a credit card. My credit line is amazing. I could take out as many mortgages as I want to. I have 14 or 15 cards."

Well I guess that's what it's all about – the money.

Reporter Melanie Berliet's Vanity Fair article on the topic, sparked an interest in the documentary. Ms. Berliet stated that, "People love to deride sugar daddy dating as prostitution, as if slapping that label on it, it's automatically a terrible thing. The truth is that there's an economic component to most, if not all, relationships. What's interesting is that many who frown upon the idea of embracing the financial components of the relationship were diamond engagement rings. If you don't see an expensive ring as a contract of sorts, you're fooling yourself."

And that brings us full circle back to the Ray Rice saga. Is this how he and many other men look at relationships? Is this also how his new wife pictures her role? Is their relationship, like many others, simply a glorified Sugar Daddy – Sugar Baby arrangement?

Sadly, the answer, most likely, is yes to all these questions.

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