james chavez must die.

james chavez is a man i would like to kill, i know that sounds harsh, but its true. in the back of my moleskin journal i keep cut outs of different pictures, tickets, random pieces of anythings to remind me of somethings, and newspaper articles. as i pulled everything out of my journal there was a piece of worn newspaper; my heart sank knowing what was on the other side. when i was in reno i was reading through a paper and stumbled on section 3A of the reno gazette. the date was november 9, 2006 and the headline read "father convicted of sexually assaulting daughter." of course my blood began to boil and my fist's began to clinch even before i began to read.

i am not one for the death penalty, i am always so torn by the topic, but if there is one ominious crime that i 'feel' deserves the death penalty it is for anyone who hurts an innocent child, especially sexually. james chavez did more than just sexually abuse his child, he tore her childhood, innocence, and eventually her life away from her.

as the story unfolds you realize that the father had been assaulting all his daughters, from the age 5 and on, and though this is horrific, it is not the worst part. james chavez's 12 year old daughter killed herself by hanging herself with a rope. who thinks of that? what 12 year old girl has thoughts of suicide? and then carries it out!?!

at 12 years old girls should be talking about boys, be a little to old to play with dolls but to young to be hanging out past 10pm. they should have sleepovers, and pillowfights, talk on the phone for way to long. that is a 12 year old girls life. but not for this little one; hours before she hung herself she told a friend that she was "ugly and would never truly be loved by a man."

where has our innocence gone? why do people like james chavez exsist? i have so many burdensome questions, and every time i read something like this my heart seems to stop for a mere second. my heart hurts for any of you who read this and have been abused in some way or another. there are alot of abused kids out there who are now young adults, and you have to realize you are not alone.

though everything inside me hurts and burns i don't want to end james chavez's life. i want him to get help but never be able to hurt another innocent soul again. i want to see the cycle of abuse ended. i want people who hurt to have their broken hearts mended. there is hope out there, and if you have been abused, you can truly be loved. and you are truly loved.

im sorry this is such a heavy topic, but it was on my mind.


Anonymous said…
I don't understand how someone could do that to ANYONE let alone their own flesh and blood. He help create those girls and almost singlehandedly destroyed them. How did he not stop and think about what damage he was doing?
Anonymous said…
the workings of the mind can be so simple. yet, it is also so complicated. there are many things in life we want justice for; murder, rape, abuse. but ultimately, didn't God say "vengeace is mine"(romans 12.19)?

there's nothing wrong in feeling outraged when we hear about things like that. neither is it wrong when we seek justice for the wrongs someone has committed. but ask yourself this: God commanded us to love our enemies. as hard as it is, God will never ask us to do something he himself has not done.

people like james chavez exists because there is sin in the world. i know it's very 'christian' to say that but it's true (and i don't really know how to explain otherwise). all i can do is pray that God sends people to guide him back to himself.
rach said…
It makes ur mind boggle when u realise that Christ took it all upon him to make a way for people like James Chavez.
Mich said…

God's heart breaks for them too.
loveenduresall said…
This is such a sad and horrible thing, I myself cried when I read about it. The saddest thing is that most likely Mr.Chavez was abused in some way or another as a child and no one ever helped him or no one knew, or cared. The cycle of abuse needs to stop and people need to become more aware and care about what goes on around them.
Yesterday on my way home from work my daughter called me and informed me that my neighbor's children were being taken away by child protective services and there were about 4 police cars in front of the house! I was in shock and very concerned for the children. I living across the street and my children play with the boys daily had no idea of any abuse.
It was such a sad sight to see the children being taken away from their mother, even though she may have been abusive, that was the one person they looked up to in their lives and now they were going to be placed in the care of people who were not their family, and who knows if they will endure more abuse. This society does not care about the children.
Children's innocence are lost and our society is going to pay for this and then people will be wishing they would of done something to prevent it. Hind sight is always 20/20, why cant more people think of the future and how they raise and treat their children will affect it!
I am going to pray for Mr.Chavez and his poor children and hopefully God will heal them and help him and heal him as well.
I wish it was as simple as saying that this man and others like him were just born evil (which we are all born sinners), but what happens to us as children seems to affect how we turn out as adults and it seems like most people who abuse were abused themselves, but then someone had to start the abuse and why did they? That is why Christ came....to be a light in this dark world and help us to become better people and love each other.
Unfortunately, this world will never get better only worse until Jesus' return. Fortunately, we as individuals can do our part to help others and pray for them and raise our children to be Christ-like and love others.
Children should not have to go through all they do, they are so precious and innocent and forgiving, they deserve to be happy and stay innocent for as long as possible!!!
-Angel :(
Janelle said…
That's insane. Absolutely horrible. Yet at the same time, especially when discussing the cycle of abuse, it makes me realize how lucky I am. My grandmother was abused by her dad, & most of the time people who were abused end up also absuing their children, but my grandmother never did anything like that to my mother. It's odd when things like this hit so close to home.
Brightest said…
After reading that my first reaction was also "James Chavez must die". Things like this make me so incredibly angry, which is why I want to go into the field of helping these people, both the victims and the offenders.

Killing James doesn't make the cycle stop, like you said, he needs to be helped. The question that often pops into my mind is, can he be helped? Do some of these people want to be helped? What point are they beyond help? I guess that's where I get stuck, should these folks be taken from Earth, or do they have a chance?

At the same time, he took that little girl's chance at life away. It's sick and depressing, but I'm glad that you wrote about it. These are the things people don't like to talk about because they are hard.


Smile today.
Sarah Bartholomew said…
i would never make an excuse for someone, especially for this kind of behavior! but it reminds me of something that hits pretty close to home; if they did it to me, would i forgive them?
last summer i went on a mission trip to Seattle--it was a prison ministry. I got to talk to a level 3 sex offender, and many more genres of criminal. All i know is that God was bending, breaking, and stretching my heart, to make room for forgiveness like i had never known before.
I have a couple of Foster siblings whove been in my family for a few years now. My parents do treatment foster care; my whole family had to learn how to forgive. these kids are hard as stone, inside and out as a result of years of multiple forms of abuse--they've also abused each other. i think it makes it easier to forgive someone when they are that young; but they've had intervention, and are totally turned around now. these criminals went through the exact same abuse, but they didn't have anyone stand up for them, or discipline them, and became adults and criminals, just like my foster brother and sisters would have. And these thoughts and more like them on that trip (and still today) mark the breaking point that God loves them as much as everyone else, and he is not willing that they should perish without knowing him either.
it is like you said, a "cycle" of abuse; these people just never had anyone to stop the cycle growing up.
i hate what happened, because i know people who've been abused and raped who are outside my family. i can't tell them that i know how they feel personally, but i do know that God forgives, and that His forgiveness covers so much more ground than mine did.
people out there like this James Chavez are lost in their sin nature just like each Christian was once upon a time. If we can't forgive them (not to disregard their actions or anything), then our actions are just as wrong.
Christopher B said…
that entry intrigued me
shypoet83 said…
I think Josh told me about that story. It's sad...
Anonymous said…
"didn't God say: vengeace is mine - romans 12.19?" There is so much comfort in those words. Earthly judgement is far from perfect, and most offenders are never caught (especially when it's about incest) but God is a righteous judge, whether He forgives or punishes.

If someone would abuse a child of mine - I would be capable to kill that person, without any doubt... God forbid. I talked with a friend about this... and we both agreed: we'd so much rather be killed than be raped or abused otherwise. Sexuality is such a precious, fragile gift - and so easily abused and destroyed. Its roots are so deep inside all of us, it's so intertwined with who we are. Sex is about mutual unconditional trust, love, passion, feeling safe - no wonder people are torn up when someone who has no right to do so violently takes it. It must be so hard to trust again, to feel safe again. I pray for all those women and girls, maybe boys too, right now - I might not know what I'm talking about because I never experienced something like that, but I know this: our God is almighty. No wounds are too deep or too raw for His healing hands.
Alice-Bo-Balice said…
That story made me cry.
What that father did to his daughter was horrible, and I'm glad that my father isn't like that.
It really hurts to hear that the girl hung herself.
About a month ago a close friend of mine committed suicide, in the same way. I don't understand it, and it makes me mad, sad, and confused...all at the same time.
I feel really bad for the people who cared about the 12 year old girl. Suicide is horrid.
Adrienne said…
I recently read a book that I think some of you may be interested it is called "Stumbling toward faith: my longing to heal from the evil that God allowed" by Renee Altson. I know the title sounds cheesy but it is an emergent book by Zondervan. So it is relevant to today. The reason why liked this book was because she never speaks of having an 'ah ha' healing moment but rather it is a healing journey with a destination that is not really clear. I myself have had a similiar experience but not as extreme as Renee's. When I was a little girl my mom explained to me that the pain I felt would never completly go away but instead it would be a like a photograph or a scar that fades with time. And mom was right.
Its funny I was on my way to go to her web-site and I decided to stop here first. To learn more info go to www.stumblingtowardfaith.com.
Meg-a-roni said…
There is a song written by the band PAX 217 that talks about a girl getting sexually abused and how wrong it is. It is sung with such passion that it makes you realize, even though you may have never been abused, that there is soooo much pain and scaring done to those who have been/are being a abused. So many times you cannot see the damage done on the outside but the damage done on the inside is so deep, you can never get over it. I think you should write a song about abuse and the scaring effect that it makes on people.
sj. said…
some time this year there was a man that was arrested.. he had a few wives and a whole lot of children.. but his wives had been allowing him to sleep with his daughters and would actually tell them they had to do it.. it was such a sickening article to read.. the girls lived in fear.

yes true, what have we become?
sj. said…
sorry. i forgot to add.. this happened here in malaysia
Adrienne said…
Write songs that you want to write but when you write them.....(hesitation) write what you know, not a cliche.
sj. said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
emily said…
For some reason I am always deeply moved when I hear men speak of their outrage at the abuse of girls or women. I have this tendency to think, "well clearly women should be outraged." But men are so often even more expressive of their disgust at the actions of these sick men and to me that is a beautiful thing. Women need to see that men find such perversity appalling and wrong and to see what a man should be. A protector and defender. I only wish girls who live in abuse had such men in their lives.

Adrienne said…
Stephen I listened to a song by Sufjan and thought of your post. If you want to listen as well, go to. Definetly a little bit of his Christian roots shine through. I dunno how long the song will be up because it is a stray site. The song is John Wayne Gacy Jr. The lyric are prolific.

Danielle B said…
i doubt you'll even read this cause its so long after the post, but im 12. everyone says i look older and act older than i am. i've been confused for 18 before. its kind of scary when i really think about it because i live in a not-so-safe part o' town. (if u know wat i mean) it makes me collapse in comfort when i remember that God will handle this man, and he will get punished properly. even more than that, i still hope God heals his heart. that girl didnt deserve death, from herself nor anyone, OR being tortured like that. thank you for sharing this Stephen, it made me think so many thoughts that i didn't bother to type them.

In Christ,
Anonymous said…
i found that song by Sufjan myself recently and have taken a violent love to it. thanks for suggesting it.

as one who has endured such abuse,your empathy helps. don't overthink the topic of where these men come from, why they do what they do, or how to fix it, because you could drive yourself mad. you going mad won't help anyone.

the only thing, and best thing, you can do is love. your entry suggests you are doing just that.
Story of a Girl said…
this is the population I serve daily, as well as victims of intimate partner violence. it is great that you are sharing with victims that they are not alone and that there is hope.
tabitha_Reilly said…
"Many that live deserve death. And some die that deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then be not too eager to deal out death in the name of justice, fearing for your own safety. Even the wise cannot see all ends."

J. R. R. Tolkien,

I don't know if you are ever going to read this, but this is a quote from one of the best authors (in my opinion) ever. This quote really struck me when I read it, it just makes you think. And you know, he's right, we're not God, who can jugde whether or not someone dies. God calls us for one purpose only, to love him, and to love others, even those who hate us and abuse us. Even when it hurts...
By the way never apologizes for writing something in your blog, I really am Inspired by you, I mean that. LLAB (love like a brother),
Tabitha Reilly
Anonymous said…
He's nothing but a monster..... being one of the children that suffered through what seemed to be an eternity of hell..... I believe he should be tortured beyond all belief for what he did to my brother and sisters. I feel no remorse for this monster. What he did to my big sister was unforgivable. To be forgiven is ment for the human soul, not demons.

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