I am not usually one to hop on the bandwagon of pointing fingers when it comes to the guilt/innocence of someone who has been accused of a crime. Publicly, that is.
The case of Justin Ross Harris, however, is inciting me to say something. Over the past few days, I have seen posts about this go from, "What a terrible accident," to now, "Crucify the SOB."
I don't know anything about Mr. Harris. I don't know what is in his heart. I do know, though, that every year, children accidentally get left in cars with tragic consequences. These consequences devastate families and change peoples' lives forever. I can guarantee you that probably 99.9% of the people who make this mistake grieve for the rest of their lives at that one moment of lapse in their memory. I'm sure they live in the world of what-ifs and if-onlys.
Are there people out there who intentionally hurt their children? Yes. I live in the world of foster care and children who are abused and broken by those who are supposed to care for them. The majority of these incidents, however, are not preplanned and carried out methodically. They are emotional events. Bursts of anger, moments of frustration, the inability to deal with everyday stressors and the lack of alternative coping skills. No, these things are not right nor defendable. But please ponder the jump in culpability that is being made here. IF this man is guilty of leaving his child in this car on purpose, that is a level of evil that we don't even normally see in a world where we see evil things done to children all the time.
I ask that you remember that in the US, we are presumed innocent until proven guilty. Please quit crucifying a man who has already had his life altered irreparably by his own mistake. Instead, start praying for him and his family as they deal with this loss. And pray that he gets a fair trial, which could now be impossible since the media has already started spinning the story with a guilty verdict.
This blog post that I found has some great insight on why we need to just step back and stop throwing stones.