I digress from literature this morning although it will most likely tie in.
I have been sickened, horrified, and deeply saddened by the situation at Penn State. Without going into any great detail because I know you know the deal, I have hoped and prayed that somehow, in this awful world of bad reporting, we would wake up to find it wasn't true. But it seems, as days and weeks pass, that it is. When I took a peek at my Sunday Times this morning (yes, this morning, no idea why I didn't get it YESTERDAY), I was caught by the title of Daniel Mendelsohn's opinion column "What if it had been a girl in the Penn State locker room?" That was all I had time to read. I took kids to school, cleaned up kitchen, etc., and that question still haunted me. What if it HAD been a girl? Without even reading the column (which I will), I am full of wondering. What if someone had stumbled upon a young girl being raped in the locker room? Would he have intervened? What if priests in the first Catholic church scandal had raped a girl instead of a boy? How would all these events have played out differently?
My blood runs cold as I think about this question. Because I am the mother of boys and girls. And both scenarios turn my stomach. But if I look long and hard at our culture, I have to admit that had these situations involved girls, things would have been different. Different how? I'm not entirely sure, but for starters, I think the person who saw it would have IMMEDIATELY intervened in the case of a girl.
WHY? And what message does it send our boys?
We all know that our society is troubled today by its lack of men. Real men. Men who raise the children they father and take responsibility for their families.
When we hide crimes on boys like this, bury them, turn our heads, are we sending a message that they just don't matter? That they should just 'man up' and 'shake it off'? Or are we just at a loss of how to handle such horrific things?
Are we missing a whole slew of men because of such injustice and head-turning? Men who might be great leaders, compassionate fathers, faithful husbands and justice-seekers.
I don't know, but I challenge you to consider this question today. What if it had been a girl?
And thanks to Mr. Mendelsohn for raising the question.
The only good that can come out of horrible events such as this one is LEARNING and AWARENESS and CHANGE in society.
My Mission Statement
I write to serve, to unite, to educate. I write to share literature and flesh out ideas that may be of interest to others. I write to document an emotion, experience, or a blip in time. My mission is to write in such a way that the reader is reminded that we can find humor in all situations. It's one of the great blessings of life.