An Eye for an Eye? Jerry Sandusky, Male Survivors, and Prison Rape

Jamie Utt writes at Change From Within:

Trigger Warning: The following article has content that could prove triggering for survivors of sexual violence.

As the verdict was handed down that Jerry Sandusky, convicted child rapist and former Penn State football coach, would spend the rest of his life in prison, the twitterverse exploded!

(it’s notable that this came from a widely-followed sports reporter)

Now, I have to admit.  While I consider myself on the road to understanding peace through pacifism, few things make me want to inflict violence on another more than violence against children, particularly sexual violence.  It robs children of their innocence and scars them for life; any person that would inflict such violence on a child is seriously disturbed, and they deserve punishment.

But is wishing rape upon those who have committed atrocities the measure by which we should understand justice?

One of the great failures of our so-called “justice” system is that there are virtually no resources or effort put toward healing and rehabilitation.  In short, restorative justice is all but absent from the U.S. understanding of justice and punishment.

Now, Jerry Sandusky did some terrible things, and for that, he should be punished.  However, we also need to remember with as much empathy as we can muster that those who commit such violence against children are often doing as a result of their own trauma.  Perpetrators of childhood sexual abuse are significantly more likely to have experienced similar abuse when they were children, and they are often suffering from tremendous hurt and depression as a result.

Does this excuse their abhorrent actions?  Absolutely not.  But does punishing violence with violence, rape with rape, help anyone or anything?

When one of my best friends told me that she was drugged and raped, I told her that I wanted to beat the shit out of the man who did that to her.  Only later did I find out that such language only hurt her more.  One of the first things we were told when I was trained to be a sexual assault survivor’s advocate was, “Never introduce more violence into the situation. Even if you are angry and want to act in violence, to tell a survivor this or to act on your anger can often be tremendously retraumatizing or triggering for survivors.

Read more here.

, , , , ,

  • Drinky McGee

    I don’t care what happens to Jerry Sandusky, but those sorts of comments are useless. I suppose they’re trying to impress someone with their internet toughness, but it comes across as limp and idiotic. Classic overcompensation.

  • Drinky McGee

    I don’t care what happens to Jerry Sandusky, but those sorts of comments are useless. I suppose they’re trying to impress someone with their internet toughness, but it comes across as limp and idiotic. Classic overcompensation.

  • pissedoffvictim

    I was molested repeatedly as a child and NEVER, NOT EVEN ONCE, have I molested anyone! I am so sick of this excuse! Give him his karma, however it comes.

  • pissedoffvictim

    I was molested repeatedly as a child and NEVER, NOT EVEN ONCE, have I molested anyone! I am so sick of this excuse! Give him his karma, however it comes.

    • rus Archer

      maybe learn what karma means

    • rus Archer

      maybe learn what karma means

      • pissedoffvictim

        kar·ma   [kahr-muh]  Show IPA
        noun1.Hinduism, Buddhism . action, seen as bringing upon oneself inevitable results, good or bad, either in this life or in a reincarnation:And your point was???

      • pissedoffvictim

        kar·ma   [kahr-muh]  Show IPA
        noun1.Hinduism, Buddhism . action, seen as bringing upon oneself inevitable results, good or bad, either in this life or in a reincarnation:And your point was???

        • moveon

          so by raping people you create more rapists to come rape you back? I don’t care about what happens to him but I dont want to see more rape and violence happening

        • rus Archer

          yeah, that definition makes no sense
          karma isn’t moral
          it’s not even remotely a good/bad thing
          you can’t really make sense of it without understanding dharma and reincarnation and the idea that in the eastern system you don’t WANT to come back because this life sucks
          http://www.haryana-online.com/Culture/karma.htm

          this story is a pretty good example of karma
          http://www.uexpress.com/tellmeastory/index.html?uc_full_date=20080127

  • notyourbuddyguy

    i hope he gets raped every day until the whole cell block stinks(not trying to impress anyone this is my genuine hope)

  • notyourbuddyguy

    i hope he gets raped every day until the whole cell block stinks(not trying to impress anyone this is my genuine hope)

    • Andrew

      Yeah.  Thanks for putting that… uh, image in my head.

      Sick.

  • NOBOMNEY2012

    I’m for killing chomo’s as long as it’s completely proven without a doubt that they committed the crime. Why pay and waste resources to house or try to fix them?  In fact, I feel the same about all non-consensual crimes. If you rape, steal or murder and it’s without doubt you should be eliminated. That seems fair in my opinion.

  • NOBOMNEY2012

    I’m for killing chomo’s as long as it’s completely proven without a doubt that they committed the crime. Why pay and waste resources to house or try to fix them?  In fact, I feel the same about all non-consensual crimes. If you rape, steal or murder and it’s without doubt you should be eliminated. That seems fair in my opinion.

    • kowalityjesus

      there would be a certain efficacy about it, and it has worked in other epochs of humanity, but I think the baseline of violence that it would bring to society in general would be very destructive. This is coming from a person who lives in America, ironic I know.  Still it would make a terrible difference.

    • kowalityjesus

      there would be a certain efficacy about it, and it has worked in other epochs of humanity, but I think the baseline of violence that it would bring to society in general would be very destructive. This is coming from a person who lives in America, ironic I know.  Still it would make a terrible difference.

  • Bluebird_of_Fastidiousness

    Leave it to a pacifist to defend a child molester. That he wastes his time defending their civil rights, instead of people who are illegitimately persecuted speaks volumes on the enabling attitude this disgusting culture perpetuates. As always, the abuser deserves protection. Fuck. That.

  • Bluebird_of_Fastidiousness

    Leave it to a pacifist to defend a child molester. That he wastes his time defending their civil rights, instead of people who are illegitimately persecuted speaks volumes on the enabling attitude this disgusting culture perpetuates. As always, the abuser deserves protection. Fuck. That.

    • rtb61

       The question posed, is what should be the true function of custodial sentences.
      As an intelligent society, we understand that a custodial sentence should achieve three goals;
      Firstly protect other citizens from repeated criminal acts of offenders.
      Secondly rehabilitate the criminal so that they do not repeat those criminal acts.
      Thirdly and this is just for knee jerk reactionary red necks, punish the criminals (basically achieves nothing aside from appeasing knee jerk reactionary red necks).
      Prison should be a model of controlled society, no crimes should be committed in prison and prisoner should ever be allowed to harm another prisoner.
      Care should also be taken to ensure prisons are psychological healthy environment for correctional services officers and that those officers are well trained and will work to achieve the goal of rehabilitation or where that is not possible due to pre-disposing genetic disabilities in prisoners, those prisoners are sufficiently medicated to ensure they do not disrupt the rehabilitative function of those facilities.
      Punitive punishment is pointless, it reinforces violence in the prisoner and categorically psychological damages the correctional services officers. Honestly only psychologically sick people call for psychologically sick methods. So the non-pacifist response to you is, I hope the police are keeping a close eye upon you, as I am sure you have committed criminal acts in the past and are likely to commit criminal acts in the future.
      I would hope that you end up in a rehabilitative institution and are you are cured of your problems rather than one that promotes homosexual rape and prison guard abuse which exacerbates your violent tendencies.

    • rtb61

       The question posed, is what should be the true function of custodial sentences.
      As an intelligent society, we understand that a custodial sentence should achieve three goals;
      Firstly protect other citizens from repeated criminal acts of offenders.
      Secondly rehabilitate the criminal so that they do not repeat those criminal acts.
      Thirdly and this is just for knee jerk reactionary red necks, punish the criminals (basically achieves nothing aside from appeasing knee jerk reactionary red necks).
      Prison should be a model of controlled society, no crimes should be committed in prison and prisoner should ever be allowed to harm another prisoner.
      Care should also be taken to ensure prisons are psychological healthy environment for correctional services officers and that those officers are well trained and will work to achieve the goal of rehabilitation or where that is not possible due to pre-disposing genetic disabilities in prisoners, those prisoners are sufficiently medicated to ensure they do not disrupt the rehabilitative function of those facilities.
      Punitive punishment is pointless, it reinforces violence in the prisoner and categorically psychological damages the correctional services officers. Honestly only psychologically sick people call for psychologically sick methods. So the non-pacifist response to you is, I hope the police are keeping a close eye upon you, as I am sure you have committed criminal acts in the past and are likely to commit criminal acts in the future.
      I would hope that you end up in a rehabilitative institution and are you are cured of your problems rather than one that promotes homosexual rape and prison guard abuse which exacerbates your violent tendencies.

      • Bluebird_of_Fastidiousness

        I thought the point of our modern prison system was an end-run around the 13th amendment.

        Also, I hope you go to prison too. I always do with anyone who disagrees with me. XOXO – dmyf

      • Bluebird_of_Fastidiousness

        I thought the point of our modern prison system was an end-run around the 13th amendment.

        Also, I hope you go to prison too. I always do with anyone who disagrees with me. XOXO – dmyf

      • NOBOMNEY2012

        Once you fuck up severely enough your life should be over. Locking people in a cage at societies expense will never fix anything. Rape and murder should result in death. I’ve managed to go my whole life without doing any of the above, if you do end up committing the aforementioned crimes you’re officially a broken human being. No point in even trying to fix you.   There’s a role for everybody, perhaps we could place our sociopaths in a prisoner killing program? That way normal folk need not have their psyche’s damaged.  However, I do believe you’re right in other circumstances, just not when it comes to violent crime.

      • NOBOMNEY2012

        Once you fuck up severely enough your life should be over. Locking people in a cage at societies expense will never fix anything. Rape and murder should result in death. I’ve managed to go my whole life without doing any of the above, if you do end up committing the aforementioned crimes you’re officially a broken human being. No point in even trying to fix you.   There’s a role for everybody, perhaps we could place our sociopaths in a prisoner killing program? That way normal folk need not have their psyche’s damaged.  However, I do believe you’re right in other circumstances, just not when it comes to violent crime.

      • Bluebird_of_Fastidiousness

        FYI, redneck is a classist term for field laborers. As someone who works outside with their hands for a living, I take offense at the slander. I suppose that’s all some people see from high up in their ivory tower. The color of people’s skin.

        I’d love to live in that society with such a nice system of law. I don’t think they’d need prisons though. I actually agree with you, except for this one group of people. And I know that there is no way to actually implement this exception. Actually, any reform of the prison system is very unlikely, so this topic is entirely academic.

        So yeah, rehabilitate the kleptomaniacs. Get job training and schizo drugs to the vagrants. Teach the axe murderers wood carving. But put the pedophiles down like rabid dogs. There’s no cure for rabies. And there’s no cure for them. That’s as humane as I think they should get.

    • Andrew

      Protecting the rights of a child molester in prison also protects the rights of a nonviolent pot smoker or war protester or illegitimately convicted person in prison.

    • Andrew

      Protecting the rights of a child molester in prison also protects the rights of a nonviolent pot smoker or war protester or illegitimately convicted person in prison.

      • http://www.ContraControl.com/ Zenc

        There you go with that crazy talk again.

        Next you’ll be saying that protecting due process rights for criminals is the only way to keep innocent people safe from abuse.

      • http://www.ContraControl.com/ Zenc

        There you go with that crazy talk again.

        Next you’ll be saying that protecting due process rights for criminals is the only way to keep innocent people safe from abuse.

    • bobbiethejean

      Our justice system is not supposed to be based on emotionality and kneejerk reactions. As a person, I don’t give two shits if Sandusky gets what he has coming to him by some big hairy fuck named Bubba and his pal Jo-Bob. But our justice system shouldn’t function that way. It should be logical and sterile as possible. What if some innocent guy gets thrown in jail and receives the same treatment as Sandusky? That would be terrible. What if it were YOU?

    • bobbiethejean

      Our justice system is not supposed to be based on emotionality and kneejerk reactions. As a person, I don’t give two shits if Sandusky gets what he has coming to him by some big hairy fuck named Bubba and his pal Jo-Bob. But our justice system shouldn’t function that way. It should be logical and sterile as possible. What if some innocent guy gets thrown in jail and receives the same treatment as Sandusky? That would be terrible. What if it were YOU?

      • Bluebird_of_Fastidiousness

        Note that I said ‘persecuted’, not ‘prosecuted’. Justice and law are very separate creatures. I would love nothing more than for them to be synonymous, but they’re not. My post wasn’t about the need for reform of the justice system (I suspect we are in agreement there), but of priorities in this essay.

        In or out of prison, pedophiles should be made the victims of violence. I don’t feel that way about many classes of people; probably war criminals too. Fortunately for such people, I don’t have the authority to commit such acts with impunity like the corporate state can. Punishment as deterrence, who’d a thunk it?

      • Bluebird_of_Fastidiousness

        Note that I said ‘persecuted’, not ‘prosecuted’. Justice and law are very separate creatures. I would love nothing more than for them to be synonymous, but they’re not. My post wasn’t about the need for reform of the justice system (I suspect we are in agreement there), but of priorities in this essay.

        In or out of prison, pedophiles should be made the victims of violence. I don’t feel that way about many classes of people; probably war criminals too. Fortunately for such people, I don’t have the authority to commit such acts with impunity like the corporate state can. Punishment as deterrence, who’d a thunk it?

        • bobbiethejean

          I see where we differ. I don’t think child molesters should be the victims of violence in jail. Believe me, I have NO sympathy for those monsters and as a person, I would love to see them get their just desserts…. well not see it. I wouldn’t actually want to see that. Eew. However, as much as I FEEL that way, I still say our justice system should run on cold, hard, sterile logic. I will add this though- I do think our punishments for some crimes are WAY too lenient. Quite frankly, I could pretty easily be talked into the death penalty for someone like Sandusky. We’ve got him dead to rights, he’s a frigging monster, why not? And that would be the emotional knee-jerk reaction was I was railing against only a few sentences ago. Bugger this. XD

        • bobbiethejean

          I see where we differ. I don’t think child molesters should be the victims of violence in jail. Believe me, I have NO sympathy for those monsters and as a person, I would love to see them get their just desserts…. well not see it. I wouldn’t actually want to see that. Eew. However, as much as I FEEL that way, I still say our justice system should run on cold, hard, sterile logic. I will add this though- I do think our punishments for some crimes are WAY too lenient. Quite frankly, I could pretty easily be talked into the death penalty for someone like Sandusky. We’ve got him dead to rights, he’s a frigging monster, why not? And that would be the emotional knee-jerk reaction was I was railing against only a few sentences ago. Bugger this. XD

        • 1plakat

          So rape and violence is ok in jail? The only thing we can truly do is stop him from molesting more kids, nothing will change the past. If you want someone to be the victim of violence, be a badass and go inflict the violence yourself. Don’t make some anonymous prison staff member or prisoner do it for you, at least that’s what I think. I am fed up with violence period, these monsters just want to see people come down to their level, they could care less what really happens to them, they are already dead inside. I am tolerant of defending your person at the time of a threat but revenge is just crude and revenge by proxy is even worse.

        • 1plakat

          So rape and violence is ok in jail? The only thing we can truly do is stop him from molesting more kids, nothing will change the past. If you want someone to be the victim of violence, be a badass and go inflict the violence yourself. Don’t make some anonymous prison staff member or prisoner do it for you, at least that’s what I think. I am fed up with violence period, these monsters just want to see people come down to their level, they could care less what really happens to them, they are already dead inside. I am tolerant of defending your person at the time of a threat but revenge is just crude and revenge by proxy is even worse.

  • “Big” Richard Johnson

    I say we just stuff the guy into a cannon and we shoot him into Canada.

  • “Big” Richard Johnson

    I say we just stuff the guy into a cannon and we shoot him into Canada.

  • Apathesis

    This fucker is guilty and deserves anything and everything that might happen to him.  He wasn’t convicted on bad evidence.  He wasn’t some unlucky black dude picked out of a lineup by a woman who was raped by a different black guy in the dark.  He was a sick monster who was protected by the corrupt and morally bankrupt faculty at Penn State for over two decades.

  • Apathesis

    This fucker is guilty and deserves anything and everything that might happen to him.  He wasn’t convicted on bad evidence.  He wasn’t some unlucky black dude picked out of a lineup by a woman who was raped by a different black guy in the dark.  He was a sick monster who was protected by the corrupt and morally bankrupt faculty at Penn State for over two decades.

  • Bender

    Do they still make soap on a rope/

  • Bender

    Do they still make soap on a rope/

21