This one is a punch right to the guts. There's no other way of putting it. Jerry Sandusky's wife Dottie and a documentary filmmaker named John Zeigler sat down with Matt Lauer. Zeigler is at work on a documentary that he hopes will prove the convicted sex offender's innocence.
Bolstered by him, Dottie agreed to do her first interview since her husband was sent away. She spoke at length with the pair about Jerry. In particular, she addressed the crimes for which he will most likely spend the rest of life in jail for committing.
Even though Jerry was found guilty, and in spite of all the first-hand accounts, Dottie cannot admit that Jerry did anything wrong. She still thinks he's as innocent as the day is long. Why would witnesses and victims say otherwise? Because of money. Oy. I highly doubt it. What's more, she thinks he's suffering unfairly by being locked away in jail. Primarily, she says, because he can't spend any time with his grandkids.
It's impossible to listen to Dottie speak and not shake your head in abject disbelief. It's known that sex offenders seek out victims whose weakness they can exploit. Still, even knowing this, it's almost impossible to hear anything Dottie says as the product of the brainwashing of an abuser. While she's certainly a victim in her own right, her continued state of total denial makes it impossible for her to garner any empathy at all.
If she sought help or admitted her husband's wrongdoing, it might make it easier to listen to her. But since this is something she continues to refuse to do, listening to her defend him feels akin to listening to someone who was so deeply entrenched in their denial and co-dependence that they were complicit -- however inadvertently -- in the harm that came to the children under their roof.
Whether she's in denial or not, one thing is clear: she can't admit the truth. I hope she gets the help that she needs. Until then, I hope she stays away from our T.V. screens. Allowing her airtime is a disservice to Sandusky's victims.
Do you think Dottie is delusional or deliberately lying?
Image via Today