Finally the wheels are up and Sean Goldman is home. In case you’re living under a rock, here’s how everything went down this morning:
Here are the highlights:
* The Brazilian family proved for the last time that the only interests they have in mind are their own, and don’t give a damn about Sean’s well-being, which could very well cost them any visitation rights they eventually ask for in New Jersey.
The US consulate offered a quiet hand over and the Brazilian family purposely flaunted Sean in front of the media. A representative from the consulate says the US government is very angry with the Brazilian family, as are David and his lawyers.
* The Brazilian family lawyer, Sergio Tostes, decided to put the last nail in the coffin that is his international career and screamed at Congressman Chris Smith, “You are a motherfucker!”
* David and Sean took a charter flight with NBC (NOT the US government, as Globo keeps inaccurately reporting) back to the U.S.
* According to the Brazilian media, the grandmother asked to get on the plane with Sean, but was resoundingly denied.
* The US Congress passed the trade bill yesterday after the Supreme Court decision in Brazil, and Brazil will receive the $2.75 billion in trade preferences this year.
* The media is reporting that David is taking Sean to Disney World for Christmas, where they will spend time bonding before heading to New Jersey.
And here is the most beautiful take off in history:
Finally, finally, we have justice.
I’m going to do one final post sometime in the next few days just about how it has affected me and some general observations, since this case has changed my life in ways I never imagined.
But to wrap things up:
The Brazilian family has not only managed to bring themselves a lifetime of punishment for committing crimes and violating human rights, but they managed to bring infinite amounts of shame on their entire country. They exposed the judicial system in all its flawed glory, its slowness and at times, its corruption.
They exposed Brazil for what it really is, a modern country that still clings to its feudal past, where a single family can manipulate an entire system. They almost even punished the whole country with economic repercussions, though luckily, the Brazilian government managed to intervene.
As we know, these people will never go to jail, and they will never pay for what they did (it’s possible they will have to pay David’s legal fees, though that could take a lifetime to accomplish). But they will spend the rest of their lives in their own personal hell, with their reputation in the toilet and their beloved grandchild/nephew/stepson far, far away. Karma has finally come full circle.
David, meanwhile, has been rewarded for the greatest amount of patience and love I have ever witnessed in a human being. To be honest, I’m not sure I have ever experienced the kind of love David has for Sean, the one no love song or cheesy saying could possible describe.
He literally went to the ends of the earth, spent every penny, and put every ounce of his being into getting his son back. He devoted himself to this single mission, one that should never have been this long or difficult.
But he prevailed, and his determination really showed. Things will certainly be difficult at the beginning, without question. But if there ever was a love that could heal wounds, David’s absolute devotion to his son can, and will.
Rachel Glickhouse, born in 1984, spent two years living in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil after graduating from college in 2007. She now lives in New York with her Brazilian husband. She has also lived in Spain, the Dominican Republic, and Argentina and has traveled through Latin America. You can find more about her in her blog: http://riogringa.typepad.com.