Context: this post is written after a white supremacist went after two teenage girls on public transit, for being people of color in public. Three men stood up and defended them; he murdered two of them. The girl who, at this point in time, has talked to the media, was blaming herself. It wasn't her fault.
Dear Destinee, and your friend,
I'm so sorry that you both were targeted the way you were. I know it's probably not the first racist venom you have heard, and I'm sorry to say it's unlikely to be the last. This city has a big racism problem, as much as they try to deny it. You have never deserved to be the target of that vitriol. You will never deserve to be the target of that vitriol.
The experience must have been harrowing. I cannot imagine sitting in your shoes that day, or the feelings you are having now.
I saw on the news you blaming yourself, saying these men are dead because of you.
That is not true. Please believe me, that is not true.
A cowardly man singled you and your friend out because, as teenage girls, you're an easy target. You weren't with someone who he didn't want to fight. He reckoned everyone on that train was as cowardly as him and would just let him harass and attack you.
He reckoned wrong. Other people, of their own free will, knowing it was risky, said "you may not target these young women. We will not allow it." Everyone who has ever considered intervening knows it's risky. Part of why people so often keep their heads down is because standing up is scary.
Those men did the right thing for you, Destinee. They chose to put themselves in harm's way. Based on everything I have read about them, they'd do it again. Every person interviewed has been saddened and not surprised at all, because they were men of principle and justice.
It's not your fault. It's not. You bear no blame in this situation. You have every right to ride the MAX. To go from place to place in safety. You did nothing wrong. It's not your fault.
You're innocent, both of you. I'm glad you're alive, that you made it to safety. I hope you are healing.
Please believe me, it's not your fault. It's his.