Small fact. One in four women in this country will be a victim of Domestic Abuse in their lifetime. This is a subject that has not made a whole bunch of headlines. It is also true that Domestic Violence sometimes involves a woman abusing her husband. That is not as prevalent as women being abused.
The problem is, even if a woman manages to extricate herself from the abusive situation, the problems do not go away. There are chronic health issues that will follow her throughout her life.
In addition to the immediate injuries from the assault, battered women may suffer from chronic pain, gastrointestinal disorders, psychosomatic symptoms, and eating problems. Although psychological abuse is often considered less severe than physical violence, health care providers and advocates around the world are increasingly recognizing devastating mental health effects of domestic violence, including anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, and depression.
Domestic violence can be fatal; women are both intentionally murdered by their partners and lose their life as a result of injuries inflicted by them. In particular, recent studies in the United States have focused on choking or strangulation, a tactic often used by batterers. Because choking or strangulation rarely leaves vivid external physical marks, police may not recognize the victim’s need for medical assistance or the seriousness of the violence. Injuries resulting from choking or strangulation can often be lethal; such injuries may appear mild initially but they can kill the victim within 36 hours.
The secondary effects of domestic violence involve the victim’s ability to function in daily life. Victims of domestic violence often take more absences from work to visit the doctor. Battering may lead to feelings of shame, embarrassment and humiliation, particularly when beatings leave marks, which in turn may lead to further isolation from friends and family and to absences from work. Because of increased absences battered women may find it difficult to maintain steady employment.
Children in homes where domestic violence occurs may be witnesses to abuse, may themselves be abused, and may suffer harm “incidental” to the domestic abuse. Understanding the effect of domestic violence on children, and particularly the correlation between spouse and child abuse, is a critical part of an effective response to violence. Without this basis, programs designed to help children may have unintended and negative effects on battered women, and may not be effective in helping children deal with and recover from witnessing and experiencing abuse.
I consider myself a peaceful man. I don’t go looking for trouble, but like everyone else, I have my hot buttons that can trigger an almost uncontrollable rage. My hottest button is the abuse of women and children. When I was a Security Manager, I witnessed, stopped and tried to assist in many cases of abuse. Most of it occurred when domestic violence spilled into the workplace. I did my best to convince these victims to press charges and help them find the help they needed. But that did not stop all of the violence. Often times the victims were so frightened, they refused to press charges. That is a totally helpless feeling because there was little I could do. I did however, press charges against the abuser for any crime I could because it occurred on my property. Unfortunately, that did not necessarily mean jail time and the abuser was soon home again.
I cannot for the life of me figure out why any man would abuse a woman. That is something that I don’t believe I will ever understand. But we must find a way to put an end to it.
Why do I say that the Tea Party doesn’t care? This year the Violence Against Women’s Act came up for reauthorization. This bill does what it can to get the victims help and a safe place, among other things.
In the House, 138 Republicans voted against the reauthorization of the law. In the Senate 22 voted against the bill. Among these no votes was every single member of both chambers who align themselves with the Tea Party!!! In case you are wondering, yes the Canadian Senator from Texas voted no!
Now, I cannot imagine anything more heartless or cynical than voting against this piece of legislation. Even women, like my own lemming representative Virginia Foxx voted against this bill. How can they possibly justify their opposition to something like this? It would be a very easy leap to conclude that they have no problem with violence against women. That is a hard thing to believe, but what else is their motivation? It is the government’s responsibility to “protect” its people. Voting against this bill is voting to NOT protect the people.
After the 2012 elections, the Republicans, in their self-written obituary, stated that they needed to appeal more to women. Then right after that, these Republicans voted against the Violence Against Women Act. Now I don’t know about you, but that does not seem like a good start at appealing to women. I have come to the conclusion that the Tea Party members are absolutely devoid of any morals or conscience. Since the Republican Party has embraced them, what does that say about the Party as a whole?
To some the mid-terms are a long way off. But they are only one year away as we speak. Now is the time to start putting together the ammunition to hold these people accountable for their actions. Their behavior just doesn’t affect things like a government shutdown, it affects the daily lives of real people.
I strongly urge Democratic Strategists to begin putting together voting lists just like this one to target these idiots. I know gerrymandering has made some of these people feel invincible, but if Democrats target the right issues, I believe they can be defeated. But it will take some real hard work and the proper agenda to convince their constituents that their representative does not believe in protecting their interests.