I am outraged, as I know many other people are, by both the soft sentence given to Brock Turner by Judge Aaron Persky, as well as the outrageous letter from Brock’s father Dan Turner in his defense. I am responding to the father’s letter due to my experience of having a brother who is incarcerated for the act of rape.
From one relative of a rapist to another relative of a rapist, I would like to express some thoughts to Mr. Dan Turner in reference to the letter.
For those who are not familiar with this story, here is a link to one of the articles:
In 1989 I had a younger brother who committed the act of rape. He was arrested and convicted in 1990, and remains incarcerated to this day. His lawyer interviewed me at the time and I had the opportunity to cover for my brother and give him a false alibi to keep him from going to prison. I spoke the truth and another brother blamed me for our brother being incarcerated. He said, “We cover for our own.” As I saw it, the woman who my brother raped deserved justice. I also knew that if I wrongly helped him and he raped other women in the future, those assaults would be on my shoulders. So I told the truth and let him face the consequences of his actions. I still stand by my decision today.
This young woman who was raped by Brock Turner deserves justice. She deserves to be valued as the human being who she is, and to not be treated as a mistake by a depressed young man who was not handling college life well. Why is it that her thoughts and feelings are so less important than the man who took advantage of her situation one evening when he chose to assault her rather than to help her?
Here are some questions which I have for Mr. Dan Turner:
1) You mention the importance of Brock’s dreams and how hard he has worked for them. What about this young woman’s dreams? What about things she has worked for, and aspired to become? How much has this damaged her?
2) You mentioned how your son has been depressed, and is no longer the smiling and happy go lucky guy he was before. What about this young woman? Is she smiling? Is she feeling carefree and happy?
3) Not only has Brock refused to own up and take responsibility for his actions, but you have reinforced this. So you are proud to have a son who refuses to take responsibility for his crime? What does this say about his character? What does it show about your character?
4) If your son had been passed out in a public place and someone assaulted him, would you then feel the same way as you do now? Would your son then be the problem, and his attacker the victim?
I am dumbfounded by Dan Turner’s words and the absolutely ridiculous way in which he has turned the victim into the criminal, and the criminal into the victim. I am appalled by the way Judge Aaron Persky seems to feel that a “slap on the wrist” is a more fitting outcome for this rapist, then for him to actually face true punishment for his crime.
The REAL way to help a relative who is a rapist is to help them to face their crime, take responsibility, and to go through the process to face the consequences and improve their character to not commit that crime again. That is how I faced the rape committed by my brother. Why can you not do that for your son Mr. Turner?