“... van Dams hire nationally recognized civil rights attorney/activist Gloria Allred to advise them of their legal rights and remedies in [reference] to David Westerfield. ‘One option,' said Allred, ‘is a civil suit against Westerfield.'” -Associated Press
Darling Brenda, I adore you. I adore how you stood tall and strong in the wake of a tragedy and how, with only your eyes, you told those vacuous morality prigs where to shove their wildly unoriginal ideas about sexuality.
I wish I were your bartender and your friend. I wish that sometimes we joked and sometimes we flirted and sometimes you sought my advice to go with your vodka. I wish you were sitting in front of me, right now, sipping on a cosmopolitan, asking how I felt about Gloria Allred.
“That woman is bony and evil and hungry for fame,” I would say. “Just like Skeletor.”
I would tell you how she routinely jumps aboard the gravy train trials of famous personalities (O.J., Tommy Lee, Aaron Spelling, etc.), and how she likes to pour gasoline over the innate conflagration between the sexes (sued to have girls instated into the Boy Scouts; sued a strip club for mandating provocative waitress uniforms). “You must fire Gloria Allred immediately,” I would say. “She is using the notoriety of your case so that she may further yammer on camera with her clacking, bony lips. She knows a questionable move such as a civil suit will keep the camera swarm buzzing around her.
I would freshen your cosmo then and say with a concerned look on my face, “Even if I'm wrong about her motives, you must be rid of her-if for no other reason than because you absolutely do not need or want the kind of hype a media whore such as Allred seeks and attracts.”
You need to hire a low-profile attorney, Brenda. Some white-haired, cranky, jowly barrister with a gray tie, brown voice and a red-raging contempt for the press; someone to get the job done without the rumpus, so that you may slip back into something that resembles a normal, private life; someone to advise and protect you when the book, movie and television vultures start scrapping over your innards; someone to question the question, “What can be gained from suing David Westerfield?”
Is it Closure? Closure is a fantasy. Don't drag your family into this long and ugly lawsuit tunnel, only to find that when you emerge, Danielle is still dead and 18 months of your precious lives have passed.
Vengeance? David Westerfield is a predator-nothing personal. Hating him is like hating the shark for eating your leg.
Punishment? Westerfield is toast now. It's over. Either he goes to death row, or worse, prison, where pedophile-hating gang-bangers will gang-bang his buttocks until he's bloody and banging on the bars of his bunker screaming, “Gimme the gas, gimme the gas-won't somebody please give me the gas?!” Suing him is not punishment. Suing does the favor of removing him from that hellish prison rapemare and into a courtroom-if only briefly.
“Brenda my friend,” I would say as I poured us each two fingers of Grey Goose, “do you really need every media whore in earshot using this lawsuit as their excuse to yammer on camera about how Danielle's murder has become a petty squabble over cash?”
How about this instead: Inform David Westerfield that you will not be suing him-provided that he immediately transfers what's left of his assets to his own children. (Yes, his children. Reach out to them, Brenda. Let them know they are not to blame for their father's sins). Let them have something with which to pay off their next 50 years of therapy and 80,000 doses of Zoloft.
It's an offer he can't refuse. Because Westerfield knows there isn't a jury in this universe that wouldn't award you every penny he has left. Besides, even if you do sue, any blind, deaf, mute, crack-smoking, mite-ridden paralegal could win this case. So please, Brenda, for your own sake, tell that media tick to go suck on somebody else's misery, and hire somebody with your interests in mind.