I've learned to listen when my heart sprints around my chest; when it loses its breath; when it gets hot and jumpy.
Berating of another human being never feels right. Violence against another human being--social, physiological, physical, or otherwise--never feels right. (We can get specific with circumstances of self defense, but beyond that - just no.) Victim, perpetrator, exiting offender, bystander, etcetera.
What does restorative justice look like? Hell; what should justice in general look like? Some people are "justly" put away for too long; others for too short. All I know after watching numerous articles and posts about Brock Turner, his mother, and people threatening his life, harassing, and saying awful things; something doesn't feel right. This form of "social" (i.e. social media) justice, is also not "just".
Cyclical violence feeds into an already broken system. What fails us? The system, sure. But when we berate other human beings (victim/offender/bystander), we fail ourselves.
Let me be clear: what this man did is reprehensible. I was a victim of sexual abuse and do not feel fluffy about any Brock Turner business. I wanted my "offender" far away, for as long as possible. The system's job is to do just that for the victim, and to deal with the offender in a way that not only sees their offense, but also finds a way into their humanity (and tries to renew/repair/restore it in whatever avenues possible, if possible).
The system did not keep Brock Turner away, nor did it make him look in the mirror long enough. It did him a disservice by (basically) ignoring his wrongdoing, and by not allowing him time to face his own humanity and brokenness - and the humanity of the victim.
But let's not forget the point. Let's focus and work to repair/remake/challenge the system as a whole. Let's stop cyclically violating one another. If we truly believe in the beauty of humanity, we must open our arms to all of it. Even when knives and glass find their way into our own skin.
I will not speak to any of Mr. Turner's heart, or any possible redemptive qualities, because I do not know them. But I do know that his mother/friends/etc are mourning a confused death of the boy/man they raised and knew, and the person they see on the news headlines. I've understood that confusion before; both as "victim", and as "friend" of an offender (in two separate situations).
Let's widen the conversation. Let's talk about how some are imprisoned for far too long, and others far too short; and overall, let's talk about the need for better responses to issues of justice in general (drug-related, mental health related, sexual assault/rape related). Because if advocacy finds its ultimate fulfillment in a meme, or in the tearing down of one person, it dies. Evil manifests itself in individual people, yes; but it grows in a system that perpetuates it (a justice system, a social system, etc).
Let our response widen; let our love not falter at the expense of feeling gratified at a solution of social degradation towards one; let us look toward holistic solutions for many - both the friend, and even the enemy.