Monday, July 23, 2012

An Angry Rant for Savannah

I'm reeling.

One of the things I fear most are those kids who seem so nice. Who seem like such nice kids. But really they're evil.

I'm not talking about batshit crazy people. I mean the sane people who do horrible things. Like gang rape a teenage girl they know at a party and take pictures of it. Then, being so happy about being asshole rapists, they share their pictures.

And the poor girl, who is just now 17 years old, finds out in court that these two disgusting, worthless, shitbags will get off with a slap on the wrist. And that she is prohibited from discussing the case EVER because they are all minors.  

You got your justice, sweetie! Now shut up and go away.

But she won't. So she tweets their names. Because by naming them, at least they have to face some of the same public humiliation, judgement, and shame that she had to take after they raped her and bragged about it -- with photos.

But tweeting means she broke the gag order, and for that she is now facing 18 months in jail. And why exactly? Because breaking the gag order is considered Contempt of Court and her rapists want her to be held accountable for that. Her rapists want her to be held in Contempt and go to jail. For what she did to them.

OH MY GOD I MAY NEVER STOP SCREAMING.

I want to drink. I want to run into the forest and angry dance until I fall down from being tired and out breathe because I am really out of shape. And when I fall down in the forest after my angry dance, I'm going to sob and then go fetal. Because I have three kids and how do I protect them from this?

Because how can this be allowed to happen? HOW? HOW? HOW? I believe in our system in justice. I really do. You have no IDEA how much I respect the people who work inside the system. But this shakes me to my core. SOMEBODY DO SOMETHING. Please. PLEASE help this girl. Protect her.

This girl and her parents who are willing to go public with her name and her beautiful face. Because they refuse to let this go. Because they're willing to stand up to something to so vile and wrong. Because Savannah is brave enough to do it.

I love her and I love her parents. And her friends and anyone in her life who has held her up through this. Thank God for you. Thank you for having the courage to do this. To do this for all the girls and women who are too terrified to out their attackers and make them pay for what they've done.

Because I may just lose my mind the next time I hear or read about someone saying: "Well how you can be sure most rapes go unreported?" or "Those statistics are blown way out of proportion." or "Can you be sure it was even rape?" or some other piece of ridiculous nonsense. THIS IS WHY WOMEN DON'T REPORT RAPES. Because of shit like this.

We all know someone. We all have a friend. Maybe we are that friend. We know it happens. I hate that this 17 year old is facing jail time. But she may be my hero because she was willing to risk it.

xo, Lydia

UPDATE:

Today, the rapists asked that the contempt charge be dropped. The dirtbag lawyers said:
"The decision to withdraw the motion had nothing to do with public sentiment and online attention to the case. He said the purpose of the motion had been to enforce the law that protects juveniles and their actions from disclosure. "The horse is out of the barn," he said. "Nothing is bringing it back."
That's at least something to be thankful for.

(c)Herding Turtles, Inc. 2009 - 2012

50 comments:

  1. I love her too! She is brave. I will help if I can. I have 4 daughters and this terrifies me to my core.
    Thank you for getting the story out so we can all support Savannah!

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    Replies
    1. This family has all my thoughts. Savannah, you are a strong woman.

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    2. Savannah, you are a strong, beautiful, and courageous woman. What these boys did is so far beyond wrong. Why weren't they prosecuted for child pornography? I will do everything I can to make sure Savannah's story is shared in a respectful way.

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  2. Amen. Your rant and rage are both very justified...

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  3. Wow. Just...WOW. This is outrageous. What a horrifying perversion of our justice system. I don't care what the circumstances were, this girl didn't deserve to be raped and now she is essentially being assaulted again? This is CLEARLY a violation of her First Amendment rights. Absolutely ridiculous.

    I think I will join you in your angry dance, Lydia. I believe I will also shout obscenities at the top of my lungs as well...because W.T.F?!?!

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  4. I read about this on Unicorn Booty and I was just rabid, livid and ready to punch walls. This girl deserves REAL justice. Why does our system make a victim into a criminal? This needs to change.

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  5. "...I may never stop screaming.". That sums it up perfectly. And what can we do in the face of
    a heartbreaking, ridiculous, scream-inducing miscarriage of justice? One thing is to write about it - get the word out so it can't be ignored. So thank you for writing this. I hope the world makes enough noise to keep this girl out of jail - the very idea that it needs to be discussed completely blows my mind, though.

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  6. I cried angry tears when I read that story yesterday. I can't even put into words how flabbergasted I was when I read about the injustice in this case.I just pray that somehow, someone rights this wrong.

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  7. I have no words. How can we contact the judge responsible for this ridiculousness?? Maybe a few thousand angry letters would knock some sense into his thick skull. Protect the rapists? Way to go judge YOU COMPLETE MORON!

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  8. There are no words. There are absolutely no words that I want to say that would even remotely be published on this site.

    So I will not scream or curse or say how absolutely asinine this is or how this is how f%^&ed up our system is...... Oops, I guess I did....

    I will say, though, that I support you, Savannah, and your family and I will be praying for you. YOU ROCK!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I was a victim who did not report bc I did not want to be dragged through the mud, bc I was afraid - and the man who raped me when I was a teenager over 20 years ago is now a teacher at a local high school.

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  9. Change.org has a petition going to convince the judge to not send her to jail.

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  10. Yup. I was spluttering in disgust right along with you.

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  11. Luckily, the contempt of court motion has been withdrawn. This was announced earlier today. I think that the fact that they even THREATENED her with contempt for talking about what happened to her and who did it is itself CONTEMPTIBLE. I hope that the parents and this wonderful young lady SUE the PANTS off the defendants, the defense attorney and the judge for the MISCONDUCT in trying to curtail her right to name and confront her attackers.

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    Replies
    1. HIGH FIVE!!! I am right there with you, Cat!

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  12. This is beyond horrendous. I will share this wherever I can. Is there anything else we can do?
    *Screaming right alongside you because I also have three kids*
    http://theycallmemummy.com

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  13. This is absolutely horrifying. Here is a link to a change.org petition in support of Savannah: http://www.change.org/petitions/no-charges-against-savannah-dietrich-for-naming-her-rapists

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for posting this link - any other links where we can show our support for her?

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  14. If she does get time, I'll do a week for her. Anyone else in?

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  15. I love this anti-rape campaign that turns the tables on the rape victim blaming that seems so prevalent and, unfortunately, accepted throughout the world: http://shapedbymylife.tumblr.com/post/25756018003

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  16. Having been in this young girls position of being raped, I feel for her. I really do, and had I been brave enough to report it I would have been devastated had I been told the guy was only getting a slap on the wrist. As it was, he was accused of rape by 5 other girls at our school, and he served a long prison sentence. I am so glad that the charge was dropped, and I hope these "boys" have to deal with the stigma of being rapists for the rest of their lives.

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  17. Honestly, as soon as I heard about what she'd done, I had combination feelings. One was immense pride at how AWESOME that girl is, because YOU DO NOT PROTECT THOSE WHO HAVE HARMED YOU. Another was the absolute rock-solid conviction that no jury in the world would consider giving her jail time for having the ovarian fortitude to say out loud that she was raped, that she knows who it was, and that she is angry. And the third was, naturally, absolute rage that any lawyer or court anywhere would have the balls to put together a plea deal that includes forcing a victim to *never* name her attackers publicly, and expect her to go along with it. Nope, sorry, does not parse. Forcing a victim to keep quiet, especially without their participation in crafting that arrangement, is compounding the attack that hurt them in the first place. Honestly, I'd like to see a suit filed by that brave, amazing, WONDERFUL girl and her family against anyone involved in crafting that piece-of-shit plea deal. The point of the criminal justice system is not to protect perpetrators from their victims. I don't care how old the perpetrators are. I wouldn't care if the girl was *90* and her attackers were underage, I'd still want her to be allowed to tell anyone she cared to about what happened to her and who was involved. Don't want someone tweeting about how you're a rapist? THEN DON'T RAPE ANYONE. If someone tweets that you're a rapist and you actually aren't, that's libel, and you can sue them for defamation of character. End of story. This is not rocket science.

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    Replies
    1. It wouldn't be a jury. Contempt of court is a crime against the court, and is sentenced by a judge. And there are plenty of complete assholes for judges.

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  18. I admire the crap out of her for not taking this... and her parents who obviously support her. Let's finally kill this idea that every woman who is assaulted "deserved it". You GO, girl!

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  19. "The horse is out of the barn," he said. "Nothing is bringing it back."

    And we all know what horses leave behind, don't we?

    If this girl did go to jail, I would be the first one to bake her cookies and anything else she wanted! I'd send it as a huge present, wrapped in a bow and bedecked in glitter that said You GO girl! all over it. Good for her for sticking up for herself when the so-called law wouldn't!

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  20. "Misdemeanor voyeurism" WTF is that? This is outrageous and embarasses the US judicial system.

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    1. My thoughts exactly. I can't even begin to express how I feel about the whole thing, but the fact that those *expletive* boys took pictures AND disseminated them should qualify them AT LEAST for child pornography sentences. I was under the impression that the federal guidelines don't care about state consent ages. Maybe I was wrong on that, but I wish I weren't. Damn them. I hope that no one ever lets them forget.

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  21. Thanks for using your platform to begin to try to right an unrightable wrong. Only when we stand up in the face of injustice will anything ever change.

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  22. what a brave, strong young woman.
    I hope by "outing" those criminals she gets the true justice she and her family deserve.
    This should follow those boys around for the rest of their miserable lives. She certainly has to live with the horror. They should too.

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  23. This happened in my home town. And was barely reported on in the news. There was a blurb on the 11 o'clock news last night. I'm ashamed. I'm scared. I'm furious. How do I teach my daughters to protect themselves when the law won't? How do I teach them to stand up for themselves when the law won't let them?

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  24. I just shared this on Facebook. I can't imagine how I have missed this story, but I am so glad you wrote this piece because Jesus, it needs to be talked about. Screamed about. Shouted about from the highest of rooftops. What are we doing to the children, the girls, of this country with laws like these? How can we teach them NEVER to be silent in the face of rape if talking about it gets them in more trouble than remaining silent in the first place. I just simply do not understand. As a mother of two daughters, this makes my blood boil and my insides recoil in fear.
    http://www.thedoseofreality.com/2012/07/12/silence-is-not-an-option/

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  25. This just is not the America we were brought up in, or at least not the one we were taught about. Our founding fathers would be disgusted by so many things that go on here today. This story just adds fuel to my "Get out while I still can!" fire.

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  26. This is disgusting...absolutely, horrifically, F*#&^@ing DISGUSTING!!!! How in the world do they get off in the first place with just a slap on the wrist?? That would be the second time the poor girl gets screwed and THEN, THIS!?!? How can this even be happening? She has to live with this horrible thing the rest of her life. They deserved to be punished so that THEY will remember it for the rest of their lives!

    The other day my boys and I heard a news report on some teens that beat up a man in his 60's and had video'ed it and put it on Facebook. (Haven't heard an update as to what kind of punishment they will receive.) The man later died. I was so glad I was driving at the time because I was FUMING! The tears were evaporating off my face because I was SO PISSED! And had I not been driving, there's no guarantee that I wouldn't have taken my 8 and 5 year olds by the shoulders and shaken them while screaming at them to NEVER EVER EVER TREAT ANOTHER HUMAN BEING LIKE THAT!! E.V.E.R! They seemed appalled and disgusted (thank God) and I *may* (or may not have) made the little one cry anyway by saying, "What if they had done that to Grandma? Ooops! Maybe the screaming and shaking would have been a better way?

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  27. I am so angry for this girl and what has been done to her. It's unreal and horrific. But, and I may be unpopular here, I wish those charges had not been dropped.

    Why?

    Because the longer it went on (if Savannah could continue to be so wonderfully, heroic in her own defense), court time would have brought it more attention, and perhaps it could have become one of those times where a precedent is set to help anyone in a similarly terrible position in the future. The nation would have kept talking about it. People would have had to make decisions, instead of the dirtbag's lawyers just going "oh no no, shhh.... okay it's alright we'll go away."

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  28. I have three daughters and this leaves me shaking in anger as well. If anyone hurt one of my girls like this my husband or I would hurt them. We might go to jail ourselves but if the justice system were to fail my family so miserably I can't even imagine what I would do. That poor child! My heart breaks for her. But she is so brave and strong, I will pray for her to continue to have the courage to hold her head high, as she deserves too.
    When those scumbags go for job interviews or on dates and someone Googles them, these stories NEED to come up. there needs to be documentation of tehir crimes. I hope that her tweet is going viral so that their names are there FOREVER!

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  29. Someone needs to remind the boys' lawyers that the horse was out of the barn when their clients RAPED A GIRL AND POSTED PICTURES OF IT ON THE INTERNET. Good for Savannah for not letting herself be pushed around. Her parents should be very proud of her. About 1/5 of American women are sexually assaulted in their lifetimes. Someone who has the courage to stand up for herself in the face of that is standing up for all of us. I wish I could hug her and send her a sparkly talking unicorn.

    I ran across this video today - http://www.upworthy.com/all-kinds-of-wrong-17-year-old-girl-tweets-is-threatened-with-jail-and-entire-in?c=ufb1. It at least took a slight bit of the edge off my rage in that it repeats the rapists' names lots and lots of times so everyone can hear. Hopefully society will dole out the rejection, alienation, and isolation these slimeballs deserve, since the justice system didn't.

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  30. There should be mandatory castration for all who are convicted of or admit to the crime of rape.

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  31. Why rant when we can all do something about it. Lydia for Christmas you guys did the hooker hook up thing with the gift cards. Because of you guys my daughter had a super fantastic Christmas (and I now have a hampster named Scamper who is also referred to as "that damn hampster" .....but only under my breath so that's ok right?). I think you proved by doing that that there are some decent people out there who honestly just want to help others. This year I am actually financially able to help others (and if you plan on doing the Christmas card hook up thing again I am so down for helping out some other family like I was helped out). I say we get a fund together to get this girl and her family some rockstar legal help (and honestly she may need some therapy along the way poor girl). Just a thought for you guys. I know I would be willing to contribute to helping this girl as much as I possibly can.

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  32. War Against Child Abuse is a facebook group that raises awareness about all types of crimes against children by publishing and updating news stories. They also present many opportunities to join the fight by signing petitions, taking in part in demonstrations around the country, and writing to lawmakers. It helps take a little bit of that helpless feeling away by knowing you can do SOMETHING to make a difference. Also, Children Without A Voice is a great organization and has a facebook page as well. I find it's a very good way to be involved, educated, and make an impact.

    As for this story, I can't even comment. There are no words. And sadly it happens ALL THE TIME. Just take a peek at one of the pages mentioned to see the recent stories. 5-10 children DIE each DAY in the great old USA as a result of preventable injuries caused by abuse.

    Hug your kids tighter, everyone.

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  33. I read this story yesterday, and as a mother with a daughter, I was furious and disgusted. Had this been my daughter, there would be billboards, signs, posters, heck even a plane carrying a sign, with the boys names and pictures.

    Good for her for standing up for herself. Those boys are scum and rapists. The rest of the world needs to know so we can protect ourselves and our daughters.

    Thank you Savannah for being so brave!

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  34. I too hope the stigma of being rapists follows these boys around forever. This is a disgusting example of how people can manipulate the justice system to make predators look like victims. These boys' parents and lawyers should be ashamed of themselves for even thinking that this girl should go to jail. If it was my son who had done this, well, let's just say that jail would be a better place for him than my house. There's no way I'd go along with anything that further harmed his victim. I'd be doing everything I could to make her life better, not worse.

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  35. OK, just wanted to add that this comment made me want to find this idiot and kick him in the junk:

    "Chris Klein, an attorney for one of the boys, said publicizing their names may create problems for them in the future."

    Yeah, genius, that's kind of the POINT. If you don't want the stigma of being a rapist to follow you around, then don't rape anyone!

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  36. Reading this gave me chills - literally. What a brave young woman. I admire her tenacity and guts, all while facing such reprehensible consequences.

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  37. I'm thankful that they've dropped the charges, but it's still a bitter bitter pill. This is all so wrong. That poor girl. Makes me want to hug my babies close and never let them go.
    http://theycallmemummy.com

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  38. Because of her strength and tenacity, this girl is going to be somebody... and those dirtbags will always be dirtbags. They will look at her and wonder why their lives suck so much and the answer is because you were dirtbags. Now she gets her share of good fortune and yours too. Deal with it.

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  39. I'm glad they dropped the charges against her. Savannah is a strong, brave girl, I only wish her the best.

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  40. Oh, darling. This is so painful. What a brave girl and brave parents to stand up to these criminals in the face of their humiliation. You are so right - it is sickening to think of sending our little ones into a world that is filled with even a few people like these guys.

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  41. Oh my. Good for Savannah! She is so very brave. If I am to be completely honest, though... since we are talking about how to protect our own kids... 16 year-olds SHOULD NOT be drinking. Especially drinking so much that they pass out. That would be my first focus. With that said - I am LIVID at these teen boys who think they can do whatever they want, and possibly not pay the piper to the full extent of the law. The punishment needs to fit the crime, and I will be even MORE livid if the judge doesn't give these boys the MAXIMUM! I have a 16 year old son, and I'll be damned if he EVER disrespects women. I have these kinds of talks with him all of the time. "Don't send things over text or Facebook you don't want the ENTIRE world to know." "Treat girls/women with RESPECT!" If I were the parents of those teen boys, Oh Lordy! They would have to deal with ME first and then I would let them at the rest of the world. I am all about protecting my children, but there are lessons to be learned; you don't RAPE girls (and then broadcast it by sharing pics). I guess I had my own mini*rant... My prayers are with Savannah. I hope she finds the justice she deserves!

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  42. Even though she 'won' at the end, she really didn't. This story makes me sick to the stomach. I wish for only happiness in her future, poor girl.
    Thanks, Lydia, for bringing this to the forefront.

    My latest post on the monsters in our world: http://theycallmemummy.com/2012/08/10/a-monster-tale/

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