In 2005, Congress declared: “Women and families across the country are being discriminated against, denied access to, and even evicted from public and subsidized housing because of their status as victims of domestic violence.” This was the experience of our clients Tiffani Alvera, Aaronica Warren, Quinn Bouley, “T. J.,” and Tanica Lewis, all of whom faced eviction in private, public, and subsidized housing because they had been subjected to domestic violence. Some were punished by “zero tolerance for crime” policies, even though they were the victims, and not the perpetrators, of violence. Others were blamed for the property damage caused by their abusers. In effect, these women were doubly victimized: first by the violence, then by housing discrimination.
that's from sandra s. park's 'Ending Double Victimization of Domestic Violence Survivors' (aclu blog of rights). it's an important topic all by itself and worthy of highlighting all on its own; however, i had an e-mail last week from a reader who was lucky enough to get out of an abusive relationship 6 months ago.
the 6 month was a big deal to her - and should be - and she wondered how many women were like her and stuck in the relationship because of fear and a belief that maybe they didn't deserve better?
domestic abuse is terrorism and i say prosecute the abusers as terrorists. because it is terrorism, there's a whole other component to it besides the bruises. it messes with the victims' minds and makes them think that maybe the deserve this or maybe they brought it on themselves and many other things.
and it's really sick and unfortunate because the women being beat up are the 1s feeling guilty. the men doing the beating? they don't think twice. (or women doing the beating, women can be batterers.)
but it's the emotional battering that makes it so difficult for some to leave. it's hard to think you deserve better. it's also hard to think of a life without abuse because the abuse is so common.
it really is amazing when you think of how it's only in the last 75 or so years that there's really been a shift to call this out. that, for so long, it was socially accepted. when i was a kid (teen?) dyan cannon filed for divorce from cary grant.
1 of the reasons she cited?
he locked her in rooms, refused to let her speak on the phone to her agent and spanked her.
that wasn't that long ago.
and there were some who thought dyan cannon was a nut. how could she leave cary grant! he was cary grant! couldn't she have just worked harder and then cary would have have behaved differently!
that last sentence? abused women hear it and/or think it a lot. but in the general public, people don't say stuff like that anymore. as a society, we've at least progressed some.
not nearly enough.