What Good Does It Do?

There are only a couple people I have ever met who I have wanted to actually kick.

I say a couple in case I am missing someone.

The one person I know I wanted to kick was my adopted son after I found out he had molested children.

We took him in.

We cared for him.

He violated children.

How do you get past that?

You don’t.

You go through it, and it changes you.

I did not kick him. No one did. In fact, very, very, few people confronted him at all.

It is hard to confront evil.

The other day I was standing in a beautiful place surrounded by people I admired, listening to the blast of a radio station–the foulest, most misogynistic rap I have ever heard.

How could someone write, “sing,” produce, edit, air, or listen to such explicit “music?”

Outside of hell. Each “song” seemed to be reminiscent of the soundtrack of hell.

Literal hell.

I was once chided for objecting to a hip-hop song with lyrics about infanticide- my fault for listening to the words in the first place?

As though it were a moral ideal to simply avoid the existence of evil.

I write all of this because it is worth pondering what exactly Jay-Z did to incite his sister-in-law’s wrath.

I have lots of family members who are real weenies but I don’t want to kick them.

You want to kick someone when they really hurt someone you love.

Do you love Adrianna Waller? Do you even know her story?

Can you face the pain she faced alone? A helpless baby.

Can you face the man who tortured her to death? Or the inevitable waves of pain, grief, and anger his actions unleashed in the lives of every single person who had to live past his aggression?

Can you reckon with his unrepentant soul?

Can you factor in the role of pornography in his premeditated rape of a baby? Or the pain and confusion of her agonizing death?

I cannot.

For the first month after I found out that my adopted son had molested children I cried. I yelled, ranted, grieved.

I will never even be able to reckon with his unrepentant soul.

And so far, his victims have survived his evil–scarred but whole. Lonely and aggrieved, but alive.

If we cannot face evil, how can we begin to overcome it?

And if we do not overcome it: what good do we do?

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