Is it because both “institutions” are hierarchical – and seemingly beyond blame?
How else can you explain the feeling of vulnerability of the janitor/witness?
How else can you explain away the fact that the university police didn’t pursue this?
How else can you explain the D.A. not investigating or prosecuting?
How else can you explain all those men knowing . . . and doing nothing?
When a child is attacked, they look the other way. When a woman reports her attacker, she is called a whiner, and others are warned not to speak up. Women and children . . . the powerless ones . . . the vulnerable ones.
On behalf of the vulnerable, we must be like the widow in today’s Gospel reading:
Jesus said, “There was a judge in a certain town who neither feared God nor respected any human being. And a widow in that town used to come to him and say, “Render a just decision for me against my adversary.” For a long time the judge was unwilling, but eventually he thought, “While it is true that I neither fear God nor respect any human being, because this widow keeps bothering me I shall deliver a just decision for her lest she finally come and strike me.””
The Lord said, “Pay attention to what the dishonest judge says. Will not God then secure the rights of his chosen ones who call out to him day and night? Will he be slow to answer them? I tell you, he will see to it that justice is done for them speedily. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?” (Luke 18: 1-8)