Sometimes the ending to a story isn’t as smooth as we would like it to be – even if we can categorize it as a happy ending. Such is the case of the man who in saving his five year old daughter from an active molestation (that likely what would have resulted in her ultimate death) inadvertently killed the molester. But the 23 year old Texas dad didn’t want this man to die – indeed, he tried to get the man help when it was apparent that the beating he had delivered may prove to be fatal.
The girl was saved, the molester died, and the father will not be charged with a crime as the district attorney’s office concluded that he was authorized to use deadly force to protect his daughter. It looks like a happy ending – at least as happy an ending as this situation can produce at this point. I think most folks who look at this situation will see it as a just ending if nothing else.
Thank God the father was alerted in time to save his daughter. So many of these stories end differently. I despise pedophiles and would have done the same thing in the father’s situation given the opportunity and the physical ability. Would I have been as gracious as the father in frantically seeking help for the man? Hmmmm…I can’t say that I know that for sure. As a mother who has spent decades trying to protect her children from the ills of society and as a human being who has followed story after story of child abduction, molestation, and murder – I am quite hateful in regard to those who commit such acts. I do not have forgiveness in my heart for these offenders. This is my blind spot – the area in my personality that reason or other equity-based arguments do not apply – I cannot get beyond the inhumanity that these pedophiles visit upon innocent children.
But this father was a better person, he tried to get the molester medical attention. When it was all said and done, the man died. I will shed no tears over that; but something tells me that this young father will. In saving a life he took another. I surmise that while there is righteousness in that, there is no glory.
My prayers are with this family…particularly with the father. There is much that can be done for the daughter over the years that follow that can help address the trauma she has experienced; but, the dad will long live with the fear of his child’s vulnerability (that he now understands all to well) and the knowledge that he is capable of killing another person to protect someone he loves. I think that knowing that about oneself while comforting in theory, is unsettling in reality. It is the paradox of protecting a life with due force – you must take away from another that which you seek to protect. It is a tough call, but one that I think most parents would make if needed; but, as I think this Texas father will learn, even when the action is clearly justified, the burden one must carry for acting is not erased from one’s soul.
And so it is - not all endings are as smooth as we would like them to be; alas, given the circumstances, this is as happy as the ending can be. My prayer is that this family will find some peace over time with the events of June 9, 2012.
Additionally, I hope that pedophiles will take note – not all folks would be so desperate to try and save your life; indeed, some of us would hunt you down after the fact to kill you. Like I said, I’m quite hateful…at least in theory.
Day one thousand and eighty of the new forty – obla di obla da