I guess I shouldn’t be surprised at how on a week when my own failures as a parent have left me heavy and swallowing back tears, that I would be so overcome at the absolutely audacity of the failure of Justice. 

Recently a woman who was raped wrote a heart wrenching letter to the man who raped her* during his sentencing hearing. His sentence was a pittance, an absolute joke. 

He is a rapist. He is no longer a student athlete, but the fact that his “bright” future was ruined by his choices, gave him an advantage…even though He violated someone else’s dignity. He took something from someone else with his own hateful actions. 

She did not choose this. She was saved by two Men who witnessed his abuse, and chased him down. 

I was angered…seething in fact, but not surprised. 

Because someone I love deeply, was the victim of a similar crime and it couldn’t go to trial because the witnesses(friends of the abuser) said they didn’t “see” anything. “Friends” of the person I love, stopped talking to investigators because they didn’t want to be hated at school. Like the person I love, who was the victim. But instead the “victim,” became the abuser…because he’d had a hard life, because he was popular, because he was a Senior. Suddenly it became a he-said, she-said case…and it couldn’t be tried. But guess what???? 

BULLSHIT! Screw your popularity. Screw your tough life. 

She didn’t choose it. She didn’t choose this. She has to live with the nightmares and the flashbacks. The absolute horror of humiliation as friends turned their backs, and He gets to move on. Even though He took from Her. And she will never be the same. 

It reignited that injustice that We have created…

Yes. We. 

Years ago I was running with someone and I mentioned how angry I was that a   “beloved” student athlete at our local  university was allowed to stay and play after being arrested for choking his girlfriend. Suddenly this girl all over social media became hated, as people wrote cruel things about her, while people praised him. I was upset because I didn’t want my kids to think that was ok…

My friend listened and the response was “Well, She did take his phone.” 

What. The. Hell. You can choke a girl, for taking your phone?! Really? That’s ok? 

We have set the standard. 

If you hurt someone else…If you assault or rape anyone else…you have given up your bright future. You don’t have one, because you took from theirs. You made that choice. You shouldn’t get the right to talk to youth about the dangers of drinking…you should have to apologize to every rape victim who has had their bright future tarnished by assholes like you. 

We have set the standard. But we can change it. 

We can hear the victims, and see them. We can invest in resources to rebuild them, rather than places where “bright futures” can think they are beyond Justice. 

We can stop protecting people because they are good at sports and have a full scholarship…or would never do that sober. 

We can raise our children to be the ones who will jump in, and save a life. Stop an assault. We can raise Men who value women as a person…not an object, not a possession, but as a soul. We can stop making excuses and start owning the actions that damage others…and stop enabling those who do. 

We can see her. She is real. And I can only pray she knows her value. Her life matters. Her future matters. She is a child of God, and He loves her.

Jesus sees her. 

He stopped the men who were about to stone the woman, who I’m sure was a victim of  a lifetime of abuse. And saw her. 

A woman wept as her hair and tears lay at his feet and He saw her. 

She touched his cloak, wanting-needing-healing from a lifetime of anguish. And He stopped and spoke and healed her. 

God can restore…but we need to crush the standard we’ve allowed for too long. 

Because the standard has girls afraid to come forward, and when they do being made to feel it was their fault. 

We need to listen to them. 

See them. 

they are your daughters. they are your child’s classmate. they are the girl next to you on the bus. 

Hear them. 

See Her.

to God be the glory.