NC pastor’s letter to Stanford swimmer Brock Turner’s father goes viral

Many across the world are outraged following Brock Turner being sentenced to six months in jail after being convicted on three counts of sexual assault

Brock Turner mug shot (Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office via AP)
(Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office via AP)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – A North Carolina pastor’s open letter to the father of the Stanford swimmer found guilty of sexually assaulting an unconscious woman has gone viral.

Many across the world are outraged following Brock Turner being sentenced to six months in jail after being convicted on three counts of sexual assault. Turner also has to register as a sex offender.

Read more: Stanford rape case

John Pavlovitz
John Pavlovitz

Following the sentencing, two letters were released: one from the victim to Brock Turner and another from Turner’s father to the judge.

Turner’s father, Dan, penned a letter to the judge that begged for leniency.

That letter inspired Raleigh pastor to write something to Dan Turner titled “To Brock Turner’s Father, From Another Father.”

“The opportunity was missed to really teach his son, but teach other sons, other men who are watching. And, it really diminished the victim,” Pavlovitz told CBS North Carolina. “I think people just finally got frustrated with the idea of victim blaming, and there was a subtle bit of that in this letter.”

Pavlovitz’ starts by addressing the idea that Brock Turner is somehow the victim in this situation.

“I need you to understand something, and I say this as a father who dearly loves my son as much as you must love yours:
Brock is not the victim here.
His victim is the victim.
She is the wounded one.
He is the damager.”

Dan Turner wrote that his son’s life shouldn’t be ruined for “20 minutes of action.”

Pavlovitz addressed that notion in his letter.

She will endure the unthinkable trauma of his “20 minutes of action” for the duration of her lifetime, and the fact that you seem unaware of this fact is exactly why we have a problem.

Pavlovitz’ letter continues to say he doesn’t believe Brock Turner is a monster but he did act like one when he assaulted the girl in January 2015.

You love your son and you should. But love him enough to teach him to own the terrible decisions he’s made, to pay the debt to society as prescribed, and then to find a redemptive path to walk, doing the great work in the world that you say he will.
For now though, as one father to another: help us teach our children to do better—by letting them see us do better.

The letter has been views more than three million times and shared hundreds of times on social media.

Read the full letter.

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