I clicked on the link in hopes of finding that these desperately evil people got long sentences. I wasn't disappointed. But the video? Was that even remotely necessary?
In the interests of survivor solidarity, I felt like I needed to respond for Kyle's sake, and not just quietly fume. So I wrote this email to the reporter whose byline appeared with the story. And I admit, this is the edited and toned-down version.
I wonder what you guys think, and I'm open to hearing that I over-reacted. Though I did already send the email
Dear Ms. Kazmi,
I hope that you will forgive me if I am critical of you for an editorial decision you did not make. If you aren't the person responsible, I hope that you'll forward this comment on to the appropriate parties.
I discovered the tragic story of Kyle Ramirez on a web site devoted to the support and healing of male victims of sexual violence. I felt great sympathy for him after reading the very brief and discreet summary of his story on that site. Hoping to learn that his torturers got lengthy jail sentences, I clicked on a link which took me to your story on insidebayarea.com. I wasn't disappointed by the length of the sentences handed down to Kyle's truly evil and monstrous torturers. But I was absolutely appalled that insidebayarea.com would post online the video of Kyle making his escape.
You (or your editors) have decided to make public a moment of absolutely maximal trauma and humiliation for a human being who has already suffered agonies beyond imagination or endurance. Your decision to do so has no journalistic merit - the video adds nothing but prurient interest to your story. But in addition to all the other terrible burdens Kyle is going to be shouldering for the rest of his life, he must deal with the video imagery of this terrifying moment of his life being infinitely public, available, marketable, and repeatable. You could have acted in the interests of Mr. Ramirez' dignity, self-respect, and recovery. You failed to do so.
Have you no shame? Have you no empathy? I invite you to serious examination not only of your journalistic standards, but also and even more urgently, of the apparent deficiencies in your personal ethics.