Their faces have been hidden from the cameras, their names replaced by numbers. Tactics used to keep their anonymity and protect their privacy. I understand entirely but oh, how it breaks my heart.
As each young man testifies, answering the hard, humiliating questions about the actual acts of abuse the feelings of being abused are revisited. Fear, shame, disgust, sadness, confusion, self doubt will come flooding back. More scars reopened.
And then there’s Sandusky himself, sitting there before them, only feet away from his alleged victims as they sit on the stand. Anger, rage and once again fear will swell up in their throats.
For Victims numbered 1 through 8 the worst is yet to come as the defense presents their case. Their integrity, reputations and motives will be twisted and skewed to place doubt in the minds of the jurors. Again the scars of abuse will be torn open. I am not worth it, I deserved this, I’m guilty, a bad person, all thoughts that may stream through their veins.
Why? Why have they come forth? Why are they placing themselves in the horrid past of abuse? Why are they willing to reopen the scars that for some have never healed?
They’ve done it for justice, for the sake of stopping this monster from harming others, for healing and for peace. They’ve exposed their pain for private reasons we will never know.
Victims numbered 1 through 8 are heroes. We may not know their names or faces but we do know that they are courageous young men deserving of our love, support and prayers. In whatever way you can, please speak of their courage, pray for their healing, keep them in your thoughts and thank them in your hearts. It is because of people like Victims 1 through 8 that someday –