Don’t care about Ariel Castro’s suicide, but remember his victims

Ariel Castro is dead and after thinking it over for a few hours this morning, I came to the conclusion that caring about that fact only adds to the misery he wrought on humanity.

But that conflict is playing itself out in the news today. Erin Gloria Ryan, writing on Jezebel (warning: strong language) considers her own stages of reaction to the news, once she heard it on NPR this morning:

Looking for strength and positivity in the death of a rapist and murderer is a fool’s errand, and at the other end of these ugly thoughts we arrive in an uneasy ethical purgatory. There’s no “right” or “wrong” way to feel about the suicide of heinous human garbage.

Be frustrated. Be angry. Be happy. Be gleeful. Be sad. But, like it or not, Ariel Castro’s time on earth has expired, and now, all we can do is focus on who is left, and take solace in the fact that his victims no longer must suffer the indignity of sharing a planet and species with Ariel Castro.

  • chris

    As a survivor of childhood abuse, I hold complex feelings about this. My abuser was my dad, who later commited suicide. As easy as it is to vilify him for outsiders, he was still my dad regardless of the fact that he raped me. It will never be simple for me to dehumanize abusers. Yes, they are sick, but they are still human beings. I love/hate my dad and I will probably always love/hate him. He isn’t here for me to be angry with or to confront. Abusers most often were victims first; victims who never got the tools needed to heal. It doesn’t excuse the behavior; as adults we must take responsibility for our actions. That said, there are no winners here. It is not balck and white. The only positive that can come out of this is if as a society we can raise awareness, improve prevention and childhood interventions, and spread healing to those in need.