Glimmer of Hope
The death of a child is tragedy enough, but when the cause of death is random, brutal murder, the pain can be insurmountable. In the aftermath of horror, the greatest challenge can be to come to terms with grief and get on with life. The Streufert family is part of a growing movement of victims of violence. Taking healing into their own hands as they try to reach an understanding of the tragedy that has shattered their lives, they confront their daughter's killers. In heart-rending scenes of real-life drama, this film documents the dialogue and its effects over a three-year period of victim/offender mediation, a bold new approach to criminal justice. By meeting the killers of their daughter, they can ask the questions that plague them, hear the killers' version first-hand, and bring a monstrous act and its perpetrators into human focus — all in the hope of coming to terms with inexpressible loss and grief.
Konowal, Charles (film director)
Konowal, Charles (film producer)
Konowal, Charles (photographer)
Konowal, Charles (editor of moving image work)
Lower, Bob (screenwriter)
MacDonald, Joe (film producer)
Brown, Ian (narrator)
Cinematography, Charles Konowal, C.S.C.; editors, Charles Konowal, Kenneth George Godwin, Robert Lower; music composer, Glenn Buhr.
Speaker 1: In November of 1993, Don and Mary Streufert left their home in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, and drove to this maximum-security prison near Minneapolis.
Speaker 2: Morning.
Don: Hello. We're the Streufert's.
Speaker 2: Okay. You're going to sign in and then go through a metal detector. [unintelligible 00:00:54]
Speaker 1: They'd come to visit an inmate, Guy Sullivan, then two years into a life sentence for the rape and murder of their daughter, Carin. Grand Rapids, 8,000 people, proud birthplace of Judy Garland, seems the perfect place to raise a family. The Streufert's bore that out. Carin, a popular student and a high school homecoming queen had just completed a successful first year at the University of Minnesota. Suddenly, on a June night in 1991, two weeks before her 19th birthday.
Mary: About two o'clock in the morning I woke up and I remember a slight feeling of disease. Not really sure why, but just aware that Carin was not in yet, and I did go and check, just to be sure. I was thinking it was late.
Emily: I had stayed at my friend's house that night, on Friday night. When I got home on Saturday morning, I got home at like 10:00 in the morning. My mom, when I came in, she thought I was Carin and she's like "Carin." I'm like, "No, it's Emily." No one knew where she was. I didn't know. Then it just really got worse and worse really quickly. Just people started to come over, and everyone was really worried. It just escalated so fast.
Speaker 1: Over the next four days, police and firefighters coordinated hundreds of volunteers in an inch-by-inch search of the Grand Rapids area.
Speaker 6: By the afternoon of the third day, there was no place you could go in this community, there was no place you could be, and not see her face or not hear her discussed.
Don: One of the darker moments of despair for me came Sunday evening, when, again, what's yet to be done, what can be done? Everything is being done and nothing is being found. I think that's when I hit bottom and just had a very good friend here and could just, I think, express that despair and that grief and that turmoil. At that point, could not even pray.
Speaker 1: Then in the middle of the fourth night, two men showed up at the Sheriff's office. Guy Sullivan and James Swanson came in separately, each offered information implicating the other. They led police out of town to a clearing in the woods and a shallow freshly dug grave.
Speaker 8: [inaudible 00:04:29] the scene over long enough to see enough evidence that, in my mind, that it was definitely Carin Streufert. Then I headed back while I went back, I was notified that Don Streufert walked in the office.
Don: Then Bob search came in. It's still hard to tell. This big bear of a man who said very frankly, but with a great deal of grace and directness, "Carin is dead." All I remember next is being in his arms, this big bear picking me up.
Speaker 1: The next day, police charged Sullivan and Swanson with Carin's murder.
Don: I'm not sure I can describe the feelings that I experienced when I saw these two men. I'm not sure I can put that into words. I agree. Anger doesn't do it justice.
Emily: I wanted to see them, I wanted to talk to them, I don't even know why anymore because I had no idea what they look like. Their mugshots in the newspaper were completely horrible. I don't know. I wanted to see them and talk to them or try to understand why they did that.
Speaker 1: What she got were some bare emotionless facts. Guy Sullivan was 24, a local man with an infant child and a history of petty run-ins with the law. James Swanson, also 24, was a loner with a short fuse and a fascination with weapons. The trials produced more facts. While walking home from a local restaurant. Carin Streufert had been picked up at gunpoint and taken to the woods where she had been raped and shot. Each man blamed the other, each denied responsibility.
Emily: Both trials, Guy and Jim, I just wanted them to say it. I just wanted them to go, "Yes, I did it, and this is why." They didn't.
Speaker 1: Both men were found guilty, both received the same sentence, life in prison with no chance of parole for at least 30 years. The courts had done their job. The facts had been established. The legal questions had been answered. Yet, for Carin's family, Tte verdicts were not enough.
Mary: The thing that struck me is that when it was over, nothing had really changed for us. Nothing had really changed because Carin was still not here. I felt relief that those men would not be on the street for a really long time so I didn't have to be concerned about that. I guess I felt that justice had been done, but I didn't feel satisfied.
Speaker 1: The prison walls that now confine the killers also shut their victims out. Their grieving was far from over. Don found he couldn't continue as a psychotherapist.
Don: Life had changed already. The wounds, the loss, the violation, the emotional turmoil inside of me did not permit me to do the work that I had been doing up to that point of providing psychotherapy. There was no energy to empathize or to deal with other persons' pain. Simple as that, I was no good in that capacity.
Speaker 1: Don and Mary immersed themselves in community work, looking for the roots of the violence that had scarred their lives. In committees and coalitions, they found support and channeled their pain into positive change.
Don: There's been the domestic violence counsel, there's been advocates against domestic abuse, there's been a community peace initiative, there's been our office, the center for reducing rural violence has all, I think, added energy.
Speaker 1: Yet much of the past still remained unresolved; in particular, their feelings toward their daughter's killers. Anger and vengefulness were natural and probably unavoidable, but it was important to Mary and Don that they not become trapped in them.
Don: [unintelligible 00:09:36] and that'll be late summer. I also had to recognize my capacity to not want revenge. I think, to see that retribution and revenge was not going to give me what I was looking for. It was not part of the thing that would give me healing or give me satisfaction. What else can there be besides retribution and revenge? A lot of powerful feelings. What else can there be?
Speaker: Friends and colleagues suggested Don investigate the center for restorative justice at the University of Minnesota. Its mission was to bring together victims and offenders to take up where the courts leave off. Director of the centre is Mark Umbreit.
Mark Umbreit: Victim offender mediation is a process that allows, on the one hand, crime victims to get answers to questions that they have, to be able to let the offender know what it was like to be victimized, and to gain some greater sense of closure, some way of putting the whole story together so they can move on with their life. On the other hand, for offenders, it's a process that allows them to come to grips with what they've really done, to realize that victims are not just targets, not just objects, that they're people.
What's occurred over the last 10 years, it's a small but a growing number of victims of very severe violence have come to us and said, "This sounds wonderful, hearing you talk about it for burglary, or theft or vandalism. What about me?" and they tell their own story, in their own pain.
Don: I'm not sure I would have thought of it myself or wanted it, but heard from others that yes, this may be an appropriate step to consider, set opportunity to confront, to express what the impact is.
Mary: When I started thinking about actually meeting, face-to-face, with the man who had killed her daughter, I had a different feeling. Don was quite eager and excited about it. I just wasn't. I think he reacted on an intellectual level, and I reacted on an emotional level. I didn't want to close the door.
Speaker: Months of discussion and soul searching followed, as Mark Umbreit took them step-by-step toward the first encounter. In all, preparation would take a year and a half
Don: I think I'm ready to go visit Guy in the prison. Again, I'm wanting to know where I'm wanting a little more exposure to him, I want to know who this man is, and I want to see that for myself. I want to tell him, I want him to be aware of what life is like for us, what that hole is, what that void is. Also, important for me to know, what is life like for him right now? Is he sensing any regret, accountability, guilt?
Mary: Some of the things I share, there are some questions that I have that I would like to have answered. I guess I don't have a strong need to know what his life is like in prison, but I respect your need to. I know that there's things that you have to do, and just like there are things that I have to do, that it's I think it's all part of our unique way of resolving this.
Don: I'm glad I have you to do it with.
Speaker: James Swanson had been transferred to New Mexico, so the first meeting would be with Guy Sullivan. Sullivan, too, required careful preparation.
Speaker: My most immediate task with inmate was to establish enough trust and rapport, that he would be open even thinking about doing this. After a series of meetings, he finally thought it made a lot of sense.
Speaker: During the trial, Sullivan had denied any part in the rape or murder, yet his semen was found at the crime scene. Perhaps this would be his opportunity to explain.
Mary: I had hoped to get the truth. Another thing that would be really nice is if he would take responsibility for his actions. An apology would be beyond my wildest dreams, but that'd be something that would feel really good.
Speaker: At last, the date was set, and these two presented themselves at the penitentiary. Their daughter, Emily, will join them but, of the three, she is the most skeptical.
Speaker: I did not sit with them at the table. I sat in the background. I felt okay about it. I knew was something my dad really wanted to do.
Speaker: I'm not a fact finder, I'm not a judge. We're not here to retry, what occurred in the courts. We are here to talk, in a very open way, about the real human impact of what occurred. Before we proceed, are there any other questions that you might have? I know we've talked a lot about this during our many conversations over the past year. Don and Mary, could you think back to June 15th of 1991, what occurred, how it's affected your family and yourselves? Could you tell Guy the impact it's had on you?
Don: You want me to begin?
Mary: Go ahead.
Don: My thoughts go back to June 14th, it was at Friday Night. Carin had been home about one week from college, just finished her freshman year at the University. The thoughts that come to my mind and the feelings that I have is the last time we were together with her for supper was with Carin and probably her best friend Becky. It was just laughter and fun and these two young women who were so excited about being in school, but being home, and just proud to be her father.
The next thing that I recall is Mary waking up between 2:00 and 3:00 in the morning, and we're realizing that Carin's not home. A little worried, but I think at that time, we were more angry because she didn't call but concerned because her worry came out in anger.
Mary: She wasn't the sort of person that just didn't call. She may have stayed out late, but she would let us know where she was, especially in the morning. She knew we'd be worried, which made me very scared. I just had a feeling that things weren't right. Then I just remember five days of hell, wondering where she was.
Don: Our imagination was probably the worst thing. "Is she suffering? She must be horrified. She must be scared." We've been given a lot of opportunities to understand what happened, these the facts, but there was an abduction. I imagine Carin was horrified. I'd like information from you, what happened there, from your perspective? I understand there was a rape. That makes me very angry. There was a murder. There was two shots to her head. You were there, Guy. I'm ready to start listening to you.
Speaker: Guy, could you think back to that time in June 1991? Could you talk a little bit about what occurred? What led up to that?
Guy: Yes. Just a minute. From the time I got home from work, I went home--
Speaker: For the next hour, Don and Mary will hear Sullivan's memories of June 14th, 1991, culminating in Carin's abduction to the isolated clearing in the woods.
Guy: That's when he shut my motor off. [unintelligible 00:19:41] was, I think, first, and we both got out together. He grabbed-- He had two flashlights, and we went down this-- It wasn't a trail. It was woods.
Don: What was going through your head? I guess the question that I have right now, Guy, how come it wasn't stopped right there?
Guy: I've been trying to stop it the whole time, but I didn't-- I guess I wanted to try to find a way without anybody getting hurt. You got to remember, he had the gun. If I make any split moves, somebody is going to get shot.
Don: I want you to know, I've been out to that spot. I know what it looks like. You could have run away and you could have been out of there quick and hid and nobody would have seen you.
Guy: It wasn't daylight here.
Don: I know. This would have made even more to run away and to hide and to get out there. It could have happened quickly.
Guy: Say, like if I would even run, what would have happened to Carin then?
Don: I just want you to know, I've been there. I've seen it.
Guy: So you know there was no trail there.
Don: I know there was no trail there. It still looks to me that you were helping.
Guy: No I wasn't helping.
Speaker 3: Let's let Guy continue on [unintelligible 00:21:19]
Speaker 2: Please.
Don: I just want you to know where I'm at. [crosstalk]
Guy: Carin began to run at that time. She did try to run once. Jim stopped her. Carin says to Jim, he says, "What are you going to do with me?" When he stopped her, she'd come over. He did rape her. I said I wasn't going to do anything. He says, "Yes, you're going to do something." I just went ahead and undressed, and I was on her, but I didn't do anything. Carin said to me, when I was on her, that, "Are you going to hurt me or anything?" and I said, "No I'm not going to hurt you. I'm going to play this off and the heck with it." Jim was still sitting there, wondering what to do next. He finally got up, and he still had that revolver or handgun in his hand. He made us walk towards the woods a little farther. She was crying pretty hard about that time, again, and asking Jim what he was going to do with her. He looked like he was going to give it up or something and she said something about he wasn't-- She wasn't going to tell on him about what happened. "Just let me go, I wouldn't say a word to anybody." That's when he shot her.
Don: Were you watching it? Did you see it happen?
Guy: When she got shot, I ran over to her and asked her-- I mean I didn't ask her, but I shook her, felt her pulse, and everything else, and I looked up to Jim. I asked him, "What did you do that for?" I was walking away, and that's when-- I had my back turned, and that's when he shot her again. He shot her again in the neck. I looked back quick, and I said, "What the hell did you do that for?" He says, "Well, she'll bleed good. Like an animal." is what he said.
Speaker 1: When you think back on all of what we've been talking about and Carin, how are you feeling about that?
Guy: I'm feeling so sorry that everything happened. Often, I think about my son. I think if anything had happened to him, I couldn't take it. I guess I know how you guys are feeling because if it happened to me, I don't think I could take it. You don't have a Kleenex around here, do you?
Mary: It is extremely hard if something happened to your child.
Speaker 2: Because I think back, I just can't believe that all this even happened. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think about Carin. Since I've been locked up a couple of years, there isn't a day that goes by.
Don: I hear you feel sorry for Carin's death and what happened to her.
Guy: Yes. I'm very very sorry.
Don: I hear that, but you don't feel guilty about that, that it was your fault, or you participated or you helped it to happen?
Guy: [unintelligible 00:26:06] If I could have did something, I would have got shot. I guess I was scared about that.
Speaker: It was very frustrating to hear him. I don't know how to phrase this, but he did not take any responsibility for any of the things that happened. He also was saying that he himself was a victim, and had changed his story around a little bit since the trial and that was really hard, just really frustrating.
Mary: After the first one, I was very drained, physically and emotionally, and I just didn't need to talk to him anymore. I didn't have as strong a need to establish a relationship or whatever it is that drove Don to do that. I think he had more needs because of his background in psychology that he has a different set of needs. I really come from the feeling point and from relationships, and I did not need any more of a relationship with this person. I felt I had gotten the information from him, that he could give me, and that was about all I was going to get.
Speaker: Understanding and confronting violence is Don's way of refusing to remain a victim. It's what propelled him toward meeting Sullivan, and it's what informs his work as director of the Center for Reducing Rural Violence.
Don: It's often appeared to me that the Center for Reducing Rural Violence were conceived with two very intense emotions. One was horror and the second was hope. What initiated these emotions was Carin's abduction, rape, and murder. The horror that I felt personally over those criminal acts that we experienced as a family, but also the horror that was experienced by the entire community that consistently equaled to, if not surpassing the horror, and those intense emotions was the hope that, for me, came out of a sense of community that when we work together, it makes a difference.
Speaker: His sense of mission and his apparently boundless energy made Don something of a public figure as a community organizer.
Speaker: The recipient of the Minnesota peace prize for adults is Donald Streufert of Grand Rapids.
Speaker: For his efforts, the state honors him with the first Minnesota peace prize.
Speaker: Don has dedicated his life to violence prevention since losing his daughter to an act of violence.
Speaker: But Don chooses to tell very few people of his other personal path to healing: the ongoing meetings with Guy Sullivan.
Speaker: 18 months after her first encounter with Sullivan, Mary is ready for another meeting. In several sessions without her, Don and Mark have tried to move the relationship forward.
Speaker: Those sessions have focused, first, on clarifying some additional information, but, increasingly, they focused on discussions of how to make something good come of this. In a sense, looking at ways of even considering the concept of restitution, some way of paying back the community or doing something good. Why continue, and, most importantly, what are your hopes and expectations for tomorrow?
Don: Our relationship has evolved with Guy Sullivan. There's a man there, and there's some things I can respect that I can-- I like about the guy. It's almost a paradox in some respects. I found that he is a caring person, he is sensitive, he does have empathy. He has expressed empathy to us. He has expressed remorse about what's happened to Carin. There's some positive things there too. Not that it outweighs or negates the negative, but there's been both. Continually, there's been the horror of this whole experience and there's been the hope of this experience. The hope has always been equal to the horror, my experience.
Mary: It hasn't been equal to me. I'd say there is some hope but not nearly equal to the horror.
Don: Has it been worth the price we've paid? No. Never. [sniffles] Never.
Don: Hi, Guy.
Speaker 3: Has it gotten easier or any harder to live here, Guy?
Guy: It's gotten easier for a period of the first couple of years. You never totally-- I forget the word-- institutionalize--
Don: I'd like to maybe move a little bit, if [unintelligible 00:32:58]
Mary: Go ahead.
Don: If we can go back to that night of June 14, for a little bit, Guy, if that's all right with you, there's one question that came up, and I never had the opportunity to ask you. If you don't mind, I'd like to. Do you remember Carin's last words?
Guy: Last words, yes. She was pleading to me, between me and-- It was me, really, because Jim had the gun, pleading to me about-- She'll give me a driving license, phone numbers, or money, or whatever, and I think I said something about "It wasn't that. It wasn't me you'd have to talk to. You got to talk to Jim and tell Jim that." I guess it wasn't a question of money or driver's license or stuff like that.
Mary: Guy, do you think that when Carin was pleading with you, that maybe she was hoping that you would stop Jim because she saw you as the person that could save her?
Guy: Yes. I think that's the reason she was-- because she knew I wasn't involved like Jim was, and that hurt me too, that I didn't put myself out a little farther than what I did.
Mary: You mentioned the gun. How do you think things might have been if there hadn't been a gun along that night, if Jim hadn't--
Guy: If there wouldn't have been a gun, I would have went after Jim. he wouldn't tomorrow, [crosstalk] and I think he'd have been laying there.
Mary: Do you think that you would have even approached Carin if you hadn't had a gun?
Guy: Oh, no, it would never happen. It wouldn't ever have happened.
Mary: The gun changed everything that changed everything.
Guy: That changed everything.
Don: Here's where I'd like to sort of talk with you about lessons you've learned. Here's where I think we're talking about some good information that I think would be helpful to other people.
Don: What would be your advice to other kids who might be around another Jim Swanson? Hear what I'm saying? What have you learned? What would you say that he is.
Guy: That he's no good.
Don: How did you know? Looking back? What told you he was no good? What should kids watch out for?
Guy: Strange behavior, like carrying knives, martial arts kind of thing, any sign of drugs.
Don: Your advice is if kids see knives, martial arts, drugs, your recommendation, your advice is what?
Guy: Just go another way. Stay away. Go another way.
Don: As I sort of think back on that night, on the 14th--
Mark: Well, my experience, even with debriefing with Guy is, he's really following your agenda and needs more than his own. He really wants to basically respond to what you're concerned about.
Don: He's attempting to please us, so to what degree are we using him? At the same time, I definitely feel we have a common agenda, some common goals.
Mark: What would you like to see happen from this point on?
Don: Oh, we need a couple days just to get away from it.
Mary: I have to say that today, there was something that just-- I just-- I mean, as good as all this is, that we're trying to make come of it, when I realized that she asked him to help her, and he didn't. That makes me angry. Some people I know have felt that just by fact, the mere fact, that we would meet with him and talk to him face-to-face indicates some form of forgiveness. To me, I didn't-- I wasn't intellectually there, and I certainly didn't feel that, in my heart, I had forgiven him, and I don't even, today. That's something that, I guess the way I put it is that God and I are working on that issue. I'm not ready to say that. I don't feel that at all.
Speaker 1: The question now arises of whether to go to New Mexico to meet with James Swanson. Mark Umbreit has serious reservations.
Mark Umbreit: I have not been really encouraging of meeting with Jim Swanson. Having reviewed the records before ever meeting them, then having gone down and met him a year ago. He's a very different person than Guy Sullivan, and a lot of the risk to me, that relates to expectations. If you go in with pretty limited expectations, you're probably in more of a protective mold, emotionally.
Don: My expectations are very, very, very limited. Very limited. My expectations are a lot of bullshit, a lot of stories, and no recognition of what he's done.
Mark: If that happened, I anticipate that can you accept it. If you go down there and you leave with that, is that going to-- I want to make sure that this doesn't interfere with your journey of kind of putting this behind for you and the family and not opening it up in a way that there's little ways of closing it.
Speaker: I feel my dad might be a little obsessive about it, trying to ease his mind or just feel better about something, and talking to these people, that they are going to give him the answers, and they don't even take responsibility for being part of it, and so, in that respect, I feel like it's a lost cause.
Don: At this time, we're just waiting to hear if Jim is open to this or if Jim is agreeable to this at all.
Emily: Why do you want to talk to him?
Don: Basically to get the other half of this story, I think is the easiest way of saying it. We've gotten one side of the picture and I think we understand it from Guy's perspective, and it's going to be, I think, helpful for me to see it from-- or hear it from Jim's perspective.
Emily: Why would he tell you anything different than he did at the trial, or why would he not lie now, or what makes you think that he won't, and how do if he's lying? Same with Guy. He's totally eating into your hand. I mean, he completely follows your lead.
Don: I agree. I know who Guy is and what he's capable of doing now. I have a better understanding of that.
Emily: That's just-- I don't know. I'm wondering how much you'll actually accomplish.
Don: For me, it's helpful to take the active, positive step and not wait and not be passive in this, so it's more helpful for me to be the initiator. I get [unintelligible 00:41:19] it's a sense of control--
Emily: I just feel you're taking an enormous personal responsibility, that because other people do not take that having enormous personal responsibility, you are looked at as an obsessive freak seriously.
Don: Is that an embarrassment for you?
Emily: No, I don't care what you do, but, seriously, dad, that is taking a major personal responsibility that I'm not saying is bad at all, but since no one else does--
Don: It's pretty weird.
Speaker: Yes. I don't know. You're taking such a clinical attitude about this, completely. These are the people who killed your daughter.
Don: That's right.
Emily: You're trying-- I don't know. I don't really like how you're going about it.
Mary: What I hear you saying, Emily, is that you feel that your dad, in particular, is approaching this very clinically and not, maybe, acknowledging the feelings that might be behind that?
Emily: No, I think this is how he's directed his deep feelings.
Mary: I'd agree. For me, what I want to know is the truth. I am not interested in a relationship with these guys, either one of them. I don't need that in my life.
Speaker: From prison in New Mexico, Swanson agrees to meet with the Streufert's in spring of the coming year. The Streufert's arrive in Santa Fe a day early. Emily has decided to join them despite continuing reservations. Before going to the prison, they meet privately with Swanson's mother and father. What transpires is confidential, but whatever is said clearly upsets Mary.
Mary: I felt that-- it's hard to say. I felt that we were misinterpreted, our intentions were misinterpreted, and it was hard to straighten that out. There seemed to be some wall between us that never came down. His point of view was so different that I found it hurtful to me and so I chose to protect myself. I have decided that I don't want to go. I guess that, for me, I think it's just too emotional, and it's something that I just don't need right now. That's basically where I'm at.
Mark: I don't think I'm very confident in the fact that he's not going to be disrespectful to you or say things in a way that will try to hurt you or anything like that. I don't think that's going to happen at all. Emily, as you think of the possibility of meeting with Jim tomorrow, what expectations would you have of that?
Emily: I don't know. I think I would just go there to, I guess, listen to what he has to say. I don't really think I want to ask him any questions or try to impose-- not impose, but ask him how he feels about me or about what he's done. I don't feel that I need those kinds of answers. I don't know why I'm going. Maybe just to make sure my dad doesn't screw up. [crosstalk]
Speaker: Swanson has decided that he doesn't want to be filmed. The camera will wait outside.
Speaker: In contrast to the meetings with Guy Sullivan, which sometimes went three hours, this one lasts barely one. Despite the evident strain of this encounter, Don, characteristically, finds something positive to take from it.
Speaker: It was inappropriate, and I heard that today I heard him state, "At this point, I made a decision and that decision was wrong." He offered to me a sense of remorse as to what happened to Carin, I think to the degree that he can and does understand what that loss is. He's acknowledged that to me, face to face. I appreciate that and I respect that. I think I understand much better the courage it took for him to come and speak with me, and I'm grateful for that. In a nutshell that's where I'm at right now.
Speaker: Having gone through an experience like this, I think there's always that hope that something will make it feel better. I think maybe it's not something you think in your head, it's something you think in your heart and that's what drives you through it. Again, you're right, it didn't make things better. It made them different but not better.
Emily: That didn't go down in New Mexico, and I don't try now to make things better from something on the outside. I don't think anyone else is going to make me feel better.
Mary: No, that's true.
Emily: It's like the whole forgiveness thing. Do you forgive someone who has taken responsibility for what they've done? Do you wait for that ,or do you just or do you forgive them even if they don't?
Mary: That's an interesting question.
Don: I've been struggling with that experience of forgiveness that I'm learning more about has nothing to do with the behavior of the other person. It happens inside me. I am learning that I think I can forgive or go through some experiences which I would call forgiveness and still want accountability. In other words, I can forgive Jim and Guy, but still think it's appropriate that they remain in prison.
Emily: Having someone close to you die, or be murdered, you can't get through it. Just through the mediation process, you start to-- not understand them or become friends with them or anything like that, but it's just like, they're not these animals. [chuckles]. Yes, they did something extremely awful, but they're not. They're humans. They're people.[chuckles].
[00:52:27] [END OF AUDIO]