What do you say first to a friend?

When a person walks up to you and says “I have been terribly hurt,” the first thing you do is listen and help. You let them know they are safe. You do not worry that you may learn difficult information, you do not reach out only halfway to prevent anticipated problems, you do not let your own fears stop you from helping. All other things, whether they involve authorities, medical professionals, determinations that there was only smoke, not fire, etc. – All those other things come after.So I want HM and schools today to listen. I want HM to show me it is not hiding from the fact that its history is filled with heroes and villains and sometime they are one and the same. And mostly I want HM to show me that it truly values all those who have bravely spoken out, will bravely speak out, and those who will choose to keep their silence. That it recognizes the mistake it made in never talking to Benjamin Balter and that it will never make that mistake again. Not the mistake in failing to deal with Somary, we get that. The mistake HM made by not first asking how can we help this student who is in great pain.