For a philosophy course during college, we read and reported on a short story – a group of men on a fishing trip find the body of a woman on their first day of the trip and wait until the end of their vacation to report it. The wife of one of the men struggled with that considerably, following the case and discovering who the woman was, attended the funeral, and learned as much as she could. The line I remember most from the story, spoken by the husband, is “She was dead. There was nothing we could do.”
My argument was that there was everything they could do. She was a daughter, a sister, a friend, etc. Those closest to her feared for her safety and were preparing for the worst without knowing. The men could have stood for the woman when she couldn’t stand for herself. That’s a moment that bears repeating by all of us today.
There’s currently the case in California of the swimmer given only six months time to serve when he was found unanimously guilty of rape. It is being talked about. But like many things like this, what’s hot today will decrease in our discussions and thoughts over time. We need to keep the discussion going and realize that we give voice to those that cannot.
It’s the human who doesn’t have financial, emotional, or mental support in place to step forward or step away from abusive relationships; or the person who doesn’t want to place her trauma onto another person; it’s the human, silently watching the world knowing he was taken from a mens room at a young age but no one protected him; it’s people that are hit by violence, hate, and bigotry because they have a different heritage.
What starts as a whisper grows to murmurs to conversation. We are the voices that keep the conversation going. We are the voices that slowly, with time and compassion, help those needing healing to be healed.