valentine violence

Well, like Haley’s comet, it happens every seven years. Valentine’s Day, my birthday and Sunday all happening in one cosmic colliding event. This means that a singleton someone born of Valentine’s day (like me) has no hope of getting seated in a restaurant on a whim. No spur-of-the-moment decisions today…every thing must be planned out to the last minute detail.

Which is why i stayed close to home today.

I went to church though. Worship is always a good idea.

The issue of the day: Domestic Violence. For anyone who knows me, I’m a stauch supporter of anyone who opposes domestic violence. I believe it is never, ever okay for a man to hit a woman.  So you can imagine the look on my face when, from the pulpit, I heard a tremendous contradiction with regard to the subject. Although he does not support or encourage a man to hit a woman, there are apparently times when smacking her across the face is acceptable. One such time is when she smarts off to her man.  After all, that’s her man and she should be obeying him and not egging him on with harsh words and a sharp tongue.

So the back of his hand across her face was her fault.

The problem with this logic is that it excuses men’s behavior toward women and allows society as a whole to believe that it’s okay to strike a woman. It unleashes the hounds of hell that proport that the woman who is raped ‘had it coming’. It vilifies the woman who dares to speak her mind, relegating women to not much more than slaves and concubines. It permits an entire culture to ignore that a man putting his hands on another human being is a no-no. It creates and environment, a perfect storm, in which we hear the woman screaming for help and we turn up the volume on our television. It permits our society to accept and allow the escalation of a slap to a push and a push to a shove and a shove to a fist and a fist to…You get the idea.

As the pulpit was speaking this atrocity, what jumped into my mind were the pictures of women who have been the victims of domestic violence. I would imagine that the woman, whose skin has peeled off her back, leaving exposed muscle and sometimes bone from scalding water or hot boiling oil thrown on her, had a smart mouth! She might have been a nagging wife, always complaining about this or that: the trash didn’t go out, he didn’t come home, she caught him in an act of infidelity, etc. etc. etc.

Blah, blah, blah. Such dither would be justification for a man to slap her across the face, right?


So now comes the hard part. Confronting the one who unleashed these demons in the first place. And on Valentine’s Day at that!


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