Grieving Mother Who Defended Son's Killer Is Better Than Us

In a horrible story from San Diego, California, a 10-year-old boy stands accused of stabbing his 12-year-old friend to death. It's a sickening tragedy no matter how you look at it, and in this case, the strangest part is the victim's mother's response.

Even though she lost her young son, she is still defending the boy who is accused of stabbing him.

The whole thing sounds like a complete mystery. The boys were close, spent nights at each other's homes, and generally knew each other's families. Amazingly, rather than completely hate the boy who stabbed her son, Ryan's mother Lisa, a woman who endured a decade of fertility treatments to have him, said not to judge the boy.

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In an interview with the San Diego Union-Tribune, she said the 10-year-old was "not some monster." She continued: "Please don't make it out that he was this terrible human being."

Wow. That is a lot more forgiving than many victims' parents could ever be and it does lend a unique perspective to the case. When the victim's family is forgiving and says things like this, should it affect the punishment a person receives?

In the case of a 10-year-old boy, one might think the answer is yes, but actually, it's much more likely to be no. Clearly the mom here sees this boy as a child. To be sure, he is. But the fact is, in the eyes of the law, he committed a very adult crime. He killed another person. And despite people saying that he had emotional issues and was clearly not aware that he was really killing someone, the fact is, his actions resulted in another child's death. Who wouldn't judge that?

Ryan Carter will never graduate from high school or go to college or dance at his wedding because this boy stabbed him. Ten or not, he did a very, very bad thing. And that is monstrous. How could we not see it that way?

Our laws and the "court of public opinion" aren't built around victims' feelings. They are built around the idea of justice for all. And even though his mother is clearly a compassionate person whose heart is broken, the rest of us who don't know this boy can probably see more clearly. She is a beautiful, forgiving person, but that doesn't mean this boy should go unpunished or be treated better because she has a forgiving heart.

He did a very adult crime and he will have to pay a heavy penalty. There has to be some kind of justice.

Do this mother's feelings change your view of the crime?


Image via GIRLintheCAFE/Flickr

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