I am going to not talk about Roger Goodell and his decisions concerning Ray Rice. As you probably know, the Commissioner has given Ray Rice an indefinite suspension and the Baltimore Ravens have cut Ray Rice from the team. All of this comes after the release of a second video, one inside the elevator showing Rice punching Janay Palmer, now Janay Rice.
Who saw what video and when is the question that everyone is asking. The original two game suspension raised enough questions about how the NFL handles cases of domestic violence. This new “evidence” only raises new questions. On top of all of this, there are those who either reject Ray Rice for the violent domestic abuser he is, to those who defend him. I honestly cannot believe that anyone in their right minds can defend Rice, but there are those who do.
What everyone is totally missing in this case is the fact that the video actually shows just how vicious domestic violence really is. It further shows that when domestic violence happens, it is the victim who is questioned most by authorities, not the offender. Questions usually begin with “what did you do to provoke the attack?” That is not made up. I have heard police ask that question myself. I wanted to punch the officer who asked it, if truth be told.
There are other consequences that no one seems to be talking about. When a woman is trapped in a domestic violence relationship, it is more than just the physical battering, which is undefendable in itself. It is also a mental battering that the woman must endure. Women face depression. They face fear all of the time. They fear not only for themselves, but for their children, if any. It is a vicious cycle that never ends for the victim.
A lot of people who have never been exposed to such violence, or don’t know anyone who is victimized don’t understand why a woman will continue in a relationship with the batterer. If you really want to see things as they are, go to the twitter feed #whyistayed to discover the reasons women give for staying in the relationship. If you think the video was sickening, you really need to read these comments.
One of the most sickening reasons I read was a woman who said she stayed in her abusive relationship because the pastor of her church told her “god hates divorce.” If I had been around, I would have asked that jerk if god loves beating the shit out of women?
There are many reasons women stay in these relationships. Some experts call it “battered wife syndrome.” The fact is that for whatever reason, the woman believes they have no alternative but to stay in the relationship. You can usually tell just by looking at their faces when you get them to talk about the abuse they are suffering.
Yesterday after everything went down, Janay Rice tweeted the following:
“I woke up this morning feeling like I had a horrible nightmare, feeling like I’m mourning the death of my closest friend,” Palmer wrote. “If your intentions were to hurt us, embarrass us, make us feel alone, take all happiness away, you’ve succeeded on so many levels. Just know we will continue to grow & show the world what real love is!”
Now, I am not going to question Janay Rice or her comments. But, I have seen and heard this type of reaction before. Here is a woman who is the victim of a vicious attack by her then fiancé, and she is putting the blame somewhere else. That is typical behavior in these cases.
At “mensrights” idiots are saying that Rice was simply defending himself from an attack from Janay. Of course, that is ridiculous. When Janay Rice was punched, her head hit the rail in the elevator. She could have died from this attack. But, the part that really shows just how unaffected Rice was, was how he casually dragged her body from the elevator when the door opened. If Rice had any real concern for her welfare, he would have pushed the emergency button in the elevator and asked for an ambulance to assist her. He didn’t!
Or, you could look at the press conference the Baltimore Ravens held for Rice after his initial two-game suspension was handed out. The Ravens were brazen enough to have Janay Rice sitting next to her husband. She even said “I want to apologize for my part in this incident.” I often wondered exactly who wrote those words for her.
I don’t know if Rice owns a gun. But all too often, these domestic violence cases turn to murder if a gun is present in the home. You don’t have to take my word for it either, there are plenty of statistics that prove this point. Yet, the problem of domestic violence is all too often simply swept under the carpet by law enforcement and the courts.
This is not just and NFL problem. It is a societal problem. When victims are accused of “instigating” their own beatings, how can there be any justice? How can the District Attorney who prosecuted this case in Atlantic City claim that no jail time was the proper justice for an aggravated felony assault? We know that he had the video in the elevator. Plus, he also was aware that Rice admitted punching Janay Rice in the face. Yet he let him slide.
The scars the victims of domestic abuse carry last for years. Sometimes, they never get over them. Women don’t trust another partner. I can hardly blame them for their distrust. The real problem, and one that never seems to be talked about, is the fact that children who grow up in an abusive environment tend to become abusers themselves.
Domestic violence is a barbaric act that cannot be defended. In real terms, it is the true definition of “domestic terrorism” that can be found. I know what this does to women. My wife was married before me. She was a victim of domestic abuse. It took me over twenty years to help heal most of the scars from that experience. There are some scars that I know will never heal.
It is this vicious cycle that forces the government to pass legislation like the Violence Against Women Act. Even then, there are those who opposed a simple bill like that. The real sad part is that many women in Congress voted against it. How can they justify their belief that it is unnecessary? Especially, after seeing this sickening video.
This horrible situation is caused by the insistence that “men act like men.” That phrase turns my stomach because it is saying that men are entitled to behave like the proverbial caveman. All of this stupid machismo that is portrayed as “being a real man” is total bullshit! It is also caused by the sick belief of many in the conservative Christian cult that women are subordinate to men. That too is bullshit!
The real shame is that as long as society, especially men, condone this barbaric attitude about men, this problem will not go away. And, that is the fault of any man who defends such behavior!
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