Its kind of ironic that Dharun Ravi is making his first post-conviction TV appearance on ABC’s 20/20 tonight. Hindsight—the kind of vision that would’ve enabled Ravi to know where his actions would lead—is 20/20, after all.
But if you expect the former Rutgers student, who faces up to ten years in jail, to be contrite in his interview with co-anchor Chris Cuomo, you might be left hanging. About as close as we get to a mea culpa is when Ravi says, “even though I wasn’t the one who caused him to jump off the bridge, I did do things wrong and I was stupid about a lot of stuff.”
Wow, don’t crucify yourself, son!
Citing evidence brought forth in the trial that the public has never seen—include a suicide note whose contents have never been shared—Ravi sounds confident that he’s not to blame for his roommate’s death:
“The more and more I found out, it would be kind of obnoxious of me to think that I could have this profound effect on him. After all this time—and reading his conversations and how and what he was doing before—I really don’t think he cared at all. I feel like I was an insignificant part to his life. That’s giving me comfort now.
The fact that we weren’t allowed to read [the note], that they said it didn’t have anything to do with this, gave me comfort also—because I figured if it has nothing to do with me… it must have been something else that was going on. He didn’t even care about this… He had bigger problems in his life”
Can we ever know exactly how Clementi felt about being violated in such a cruel way? No.
Did Ravi get railroaded by a society desperate for an easy explanation for an unfathomable tragedy? Probably.
Is Ravi an idiot and an asshat for deflecting blame so coolly and casually—and suggesting his roommate was a basketcase? You betcha!
In the full interview, Ravi discusses the apology he texted Tyler and why he didn’t take a proposed plea bargain. He also suggests his imprisonment would set back the gay-rights movement:
“The people that are fighting for gay rights, they have a just cause. I think this kind of detracts from their cause. This is something people can point to and say, ‘You guys are going overboard.’ I think it’s bad for them.”
It’s like, we want to feel sorry for this kid whose life is essentially ruined now but he’s such a dick it’s darn near impossible.