Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Repulsive

I LOVE talk radio.  I don't know why - and I really hate the commercials - but I do love the news and stories and I'm just not that much of a music radio person.  As I was driving to work listening to the radio this morning I heard a story that made me SICK!

Brian David Mitchell (the man who kidnapped Elizabeth Smart - recently convicted of kidnapping, sexual assault and burglary).  Anyway, Mitchell repeatedly raped Smart in the 8 months he held her captive, sometimes multiple times daily and forced her to watch pornographic films.  He often forced her to drink alcohol to lower her resistance.  Once, when she vomited after drinking a large portion of alcohol, she was forced to sleep face-down in the vomit.  May 25, 2011 is the proposed date for sentencing of Brian David Mitchell.

The defense is arguing for a lesser sentence for him since Elizabeth is well adjusted, moving on with her life (she attended BYU to study music before leaving to serve an LDS mission in France) and appears to have healed past this experience that what Brian David Mitchell did to her COULDN'T HAVE BEEN THAT BAD!

I understand the need for everyone to have a good defense and be well represented - but this approach is sickening to me.  Because she turned out okay he shouldn't have to suffer the consequence of his crime?  What kind of attorney could sleep with themselves at night and make that argument?  No honestly, I don't understand how you could argue that a person should be less punished for their crime because their victim responded positively to the situation and is successfully putting life back together.  How could the attorney feel that their is any integrity in your work or live with yourself for discrediting the experience of the victim?

This story made me want to hurl - it may be from my own personal experiences of choosing to heal, move forward, forgive, love and be successful - but I feel that this approach is awful.  Whether or not this approach works for Brian's attorneys I honestly can't understand how discounting Elizabeth's valiance changes the gruesome actions that occurred or the price that should be paid because of them.

I don't pretend to want to be the one deciding his sentence, I don't want to decide his fate - but lessening what happened to the victim is criminal and repulsive...

2 comments:

kirsten.brooke said...

I agree with you whole-heartedly, that is repulsive. Besides, just because she has come as far as she has, does not mean it hasn't taken years of hard work, intensive therapy, and will continue to take years (possibly her whole life) of therapy and continued work to not let it infiltrate her happiness.

Kristen said...

Right on.... Repulsive indeed!