Sometimes, forgiveness is not possible. Sometimes, the crime is so monstrous, the damage is so extreme, the wound so deep, that forgiveness is the last thing a victim is concerned with or strives for. In these situations, ‘forgive and forget’ is not only unhelpful, it is destructive. In these situations, the perpetrator deserves no compassion, no leniency, zero mercy.
USA Gymnastics Dr. Larry Nassar pleaded guilty to molesting seven girls. However, 140 girls have come forward to accuse him of abuse. Let that sink in for a second. One. Hundred. And. Forty. Girls. My body is stuck in a perfect equilibrium of anger and sadness. The tears that are ready to gush out of my eyes instantly evaporate from the heat of my rage.
And this monster had the audacity to complain that the judge was running a ‘media circus’ for allowing these girls to appear in the courtroom to read their statements. He said that it was “too hard” for him to listen to these girls. Thankfully, the judge was having none of it:
“You spent thousands of hours perpetrating sexual assault on minors. Spending four or five days listening to them is significantly minor considering the hours of pleasure you’ve had at their expense and ruining their lives.”
“I didn’t want one victim to lose their voice. It allows for the healing of victims so that they can move forward.”
To one victim, Judge Aquilina said:
“The monster who took advantage of you is going to wither, much like the scene in the ‘Wizard of Oz’ where the water gets poured on the witch and the witch withers away. That’s what’s going to happen to him because as you get stronger, as you overcome - because you will - he gets weaker and he will wither away.
Judge Aquilina to Larry Nassar in response to his letter: "This isn't worth the paper it's written on." pic.twitter.com/p19fA7jJXz— Outside The Lines (@OTLonESPN) January 18, 2018
Ursula lives in Chicago and likes potatoes very much. You can follow her here.