It’s raining as I write this. The bad weather means my bottom left wisdom tooth is broadcasting aching weather warnings throughout my lower jaw and only cup after cup of herbal tea provides comfort.
I’m upset as I write this. Words locked inside my brain, unwilling or unable to come out, trapped inside the maelstrom in my mind.
I’m typically guilty of allowing myself to get wrapped up in the more negative aspects of life. I find time to appreciate the beautiful moments, but as a person prone to depressive episodes it’s hard for me to ignore the darker side sometimes.
I’m talking about Rehtaeh Parsons, a seventeen year old girl who was the apple of her father’s eye, a kind and giving soul, who committed suicide five days ago. She had been raped, and the justice system was failing her.
She couldn’t take any more.
I didn’t know her. She was an East Coast-er like me, hailing from Nova Scotia (I’m from Newfoundland, NS’ friendly neighbor). I heard about her a couple days ago and although I’ve been thinking about her, her situation, and the whole fucked up misogynistic patriarical rape culture slut shaming society in which we live for days, I’ve been unable to write about it.
I’m just too upset.
Rehtaeh’s story deserves to be told. Not just the bad stuff, the stuff about her rape and suicide. She was NOT what happened to her. She was so much more than that.
Her father wrote a piece for The Huffington Post, which I read while choking back tears.
I don’t think I could say it any better than her father, so I encourage you to click the link and read her father’s words.
Rehtaeh, you will be missed by more people than you ever knew.
My thoughts are with her family as they go through this. I hope they find peace, and I hope the pressure from the public forces Nova Scotia’s Justice Minister to do something about her attackers. Show them their behavior was a crime.
Punish them accordingly.
Rehtaeh Parsons Was My Daughter – By Glen Canning
Justice for Rehtaeh – Sign the petition to reopen her case.
UPDATE: I just found out the RCMP is reopening Rehtaeh’s case. I hope her attackers will be brought to justice and we make sure no other cases like hers get swept under the rug ever again.
- ‘For the love of God do something’: Father of Rehtaeh Parsons speaks out (metronews.ca)
- Rehtaeh Parsons (bellejarblog.wordpress.com)
- Stephen Harper ‘sickened’ by Rehtaeh Parsons story – CBC.ca (cbc.ca)
- U.S. teen’s death eerily similar to Rehtaeh’s story (cbc.ca)
- Rehtaeh Parsons was an organ donor, saved four lives (o.canada.com)