I feel the dad who charged convicted sexual predator Larry Nassar in a Michigan courtroom Friday. What parent doesn’t feel him?
Randall Margraves, father of three victims in Nassar’s abuse case, entrusted a well-respected sports doctor with his daughters. He entrusted institutions like Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics around Nassar.
Margraves will likely always believe his radar should’ve gone off. Someone’s radar should’ve gone off.
Margraves has three forever-changed daughters and no way to recover life as it was, before Nassar’s atrocities against them and other girls. What a mix of rage, guilt and grief Margraves must feel.
Above any calling, parents live to protect their children.
After hearing two daughters give impact statements in Friday’s sentencing hearing — and seeing Nassar shake his head — Margraves called himself “a distraught father” who wanted “five minutes in a locked room with this demon.”
No judge could legally grant such a wish, and Margraves tried to pay it backward. Only courtroom officers could delay what’s likely coming for Nassar in prison.
Only officers could protect Margraves from throwing his life away on a potentially serious charge, had he gotten hands on Nassar.
Officers prevented Margraves from allowing Nassar to further victimize his daughters. The same system that finally stopped Nassar, convicted him, sentenced him and protected him from populist justice atop legal justice also protected Margraves from himself.
We understand Randall Margraves. We might even raise a beer to him.
Since our system also weighs mercy, Margraves won’t face punishment. His daughters won’t heal without him, even for a short time.
Both law and order are good things.