He’s blond-haired, blue-eye, baby-faced, a loved son and respected friend, attended the prestigious Standford University and was a hopeful Olympic swimmer. But which of these traits gives Stanford rapist Brock Turner the right above others to assault an unconscious woman?
By providing the disgustingly light sentence of six months behind bars, Judge Aaron Persky is essentially propagating the right to rape to those who have earned it through good behaviour.
No matter how much the whiny rapist wants to complain, a slap on the wrist is not adequate punishment for the severity of his actions.
That ideal encompasses what everything that is wrong with the trial and sentencing is about; character witnesses for the 20-year-old convicted felon and tarnished swimmer paint a picture of a wholesome boy, model student, and dedicated athlete. As if these positives make the fact that he raped an unconscious woman less severe because it’s apparently out of character.
Whether it’s out of character or not it does not make the cold, hard fact he was found guilty of three felonies disappear.
Turner is set to be released on Sept. 2, having only served three of his six months. Turner took it upon himself to force himself on an unconscious woman, damaging her life. While he didn’t kill her he took everything she knew and felt and how she experienced the world and tainted it, changing it forever.
By sentencing him to six months, three years probation and sex offender status, and letting him out early for good behaviour the judge and the character witnesses who are defending Turner are implying that woman’s life is only worth three months; that justice for the wrong done to her is less important than the comfort and convenience a convicted rapist.
Of course he is going to be on his best behaviour, the eyes of the world are on him and as a coward he cannot stand to be seen as anything less than a golden boy.
Was he was too intoxicated to be aware of his own actions? Further action suggests he was lucid enough to know he had done wrong because he ran from the bikers who caught him in the act and lied to police the night of his arrest, Turner continues to buy into the unjust judge’s way of thinking by refusing to hold himself fully responsible for his actions.
Directly in Turner’s sentencing statement he says the way he’s going to move forward from this incident is by showing people who he really is as a person. Well he’s clearly done that.
He may be a good swimmer, a respectful son and a sincere friend but he is also a rapist, whether he wants to admit it or not. How he lived his life up until that point should have no relevance on how he’s sentenced.
Amelia Naismith is the new reporter for The Pipestone Flyer. She writes a regular column for the paper.