When a beloved elite deviant dies, the public mourns that man they knew. They weep, they pay tribute, they exalt the memory of the man they believed him to be. His victim(s) may also mourn the man they knew. They may weep, remember the unforgettable, and speak the unspeakable.
An elite deviant may be elevated and exonerated in death while his victims remain alive but unable to live. His family and community and the victim mourn two different men: father, husband, friend, professional, and predator.
We are completely uncomfortable with dual realities. It may be true that he was a good father/husband/influencer. It is also true that he was a predator — in most elite deviants these two dual realities coexist. All who remember may mourn — yet their remembrances will be of two different men — day man and a night man. It takes mental and emotional flexibility to sit with both.
Let us be kind to both type and rememberers and make space for each sort of sorrow. Even the worst of us have some left some good, and the best of us have left some bad. Human legacies are rarely unblemished by humanity.
The elite predator may be even more powerful in death – his memory unpenetrable by the glossy rewriting of history. Our corporate forgetfulness is a fortress. The victim(s) can take solace in the fact that while his memory may live on in infamy — he is no more. For many his death may bring grief — for others — relief.
If humans were more humane — we would lament the losses of the man he was and the man we wanted him to be.