Sunday, August 31, 2014

Domestic violence propaganda ensnares NFL

Will someone please answer this question for me: Is domestic violence wrong for whoever is guilty of it, or is just wrong when men do it?  I think we all know the answer to that one by now. When the Center For Disease Control report on intimate partner violence in 2011 was released, the media focused entirely on its findings on sexual assault—noticeably lower than the figures that were commonly put out by propagandists, but still the closest thing to an “accurate” accounting; interestingly, the report left the issue of whether males were “raped” as a “not applicable” to purpose of the study.

What was entirely ignored by the media (and of course by the propagandists) was the revelation that there was near parity in the number (if not always in the severity) of acts of domestic violence by both men and women. It also revealed a disturbing trend—men were increasingly reporting more incidents of domestic violence committed against them than the number of incidents women reported, in fact 25 percent more incidents in the year prior. 

While it is certainly true that a man engaging in an act of physical violence can be a frightening thing to whoever is the target of it, people tend not to differentiate between the intention to hurt, and that involving self-defense. The reality is that domestic violence incidents are usually instigated first by some petty issue leading to argument , and once someone doesn’t receive sufficient “satisfaction” that the hurt or guilt intended isn’t apparent felt, this can go beyond the simple argument phase if the will and opportunity is present, and this applies to women perhaps more so than men. I’ve encountered too many women with “attitude” who I sense are difficult people to live with.

Domestic violence is clearly a two-way street in most cases; how can it be legislated out of existence if one side—women and their advocates—feel that their “participation” is not domestic violence, but merely the weakness of woman that must be tolerated by men—even when it involves being physically assaulted? To defend oneself is to fall accused and ostracized. 

I’m not going to claim that there are not violent men out there who can just barely keep themselves under control. There are, plenty of them, and I’ve “met” some of them. And many of them are the husbands and partners of women who—to be perfectly frank—prefer such “strong” men because they like being “taken care of” rather than look after themselves. These men pretend to love their women, but they are also the ones I would be most fearful of. I saw one of these men on the bus the other day, and I will write a post soon describing it.

Yet there are also women who just imagining being locked-up in the same room with them for five minutes amounts to domestic violence. Six days after the shooting at that Kent Wendy’s/convenience store, I happened to be there when another potentially violent scene erupted. I was in the restroom, and when I heard the commotion, I decided to lock myself in the stall, just in case some violence did occur. A man seemed to be “calmly” requesting that a woman, presumably his girlfriend, return a cellphone to him. The woman, however, was screaming ferociously, threatening to call the police if he didn’t leave. He kept asking her, for whatever reason, to return his phone, but she refused and continued to shriek not in an aspect of fear, but of threat. Finally the two were “persuaded” to leave the premises, and from what I could tell the police were not involved. But having heard and not seen what had transpired, I was more disturbed by the violence in the woman’s behavior.

Yet this information has gone unreported by the media, and “unknown” to the general public. To state that women who instigate and engage in domestic violence (afterwards to pose as “passive victims”) actually exist is simply not acceptable. People won’t believe it or don’t want to. Or worse yet, it doesn’t matter. For activists and propagandists, to admit as much is to bring the whole edifice of their victim myths to come crumbling down. 

Public figures who are accused are typical fodder for propagandists, but athletes seem to be more the object of outrage, at least in the opinion of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Supposedly “outrage” from every corner of the country—especially from the half of the fan base who are (supposedly) women—concerning the “light” two-game suspension without pay of the Baltimore Ravens’ Ray Rice after an incident in an elevator with his then fiancĂ© (and now wife). 

Admittedly the evidence of security cameras looked grim; it appears that Rice is dragging his apparently unconscious fiancĂ© out of the elevator. He and his wife claim that they had an argument in the elevator, that she altercated with him, and in “self-defense” he “accidently” caused her head to be struck against the side of the elevator. One can speculate that this is the truth or not; perhaps Rice’s wife didn’t want to ruin his career and lose most of year’s salary, which would not be helpful to her lifestyle or subsequent divorce settlement. But whatever the story was, Goodell initially found it to be “credible” and warranting the lighter “sentence.”

But as noted, “outrage” came from feminist commentators in the media and out, and domestic violence advocates; I use the term “advocates” deliberately, since it accurately describes the indifference to the holistic view of the problem, thus insuring its continuation as a propaganda tool to justify their existence as propagators of various female victim myths. 

Responding to accusations that he wasn’t taking domestic violence among players seriously, Goodell released a new policy statement that unfortunately incorporates the weaknesses of all other “remedies” for domestic violence:

First, we will continue our work with leading experts to expand the scope of our education on domestic violence and sexual assault for all NFL personnel -- players and non-players. This will include enhanced training for entering players through the Rookie Symposium and Rookie Success Program, as well as new programs designed for veteran players and other NFL personnel. All NFL personnel -- players and non-players -- will receive information about available league resources and local support and advocacy groups in their community.

Again, what is to be gained by receiving “training” from advocacy groups and so-called researchers who ignore the reality of interpersonal conflict? If a player is confronted by an abusive spouse or girlfriend, is he being told how to respond to it? Is he being told that he isn’t always to blame, that sometimes it is the wife or partner who might need help so that he doesn’t find himself arrested and imprisoned?

 Second, our club Player Engagement Directors, Human Resource Executives, and other appropriate team personnel will undergo comprehensive training to help them understand and identify risk factors associated with domestic violence and sexual assault. Any person identified as being at risk will be afforded private, confidential assistance. Persons who decline this assistance will be held accountable for that decision in determining discipline for any subsequent act of domestic violence or sexual assault. This is a complicated matter and must be approached with care. We will work with experts to identify strategies based on the most reliable research, recognizing that violence can and does take different forms but generally involves a pattern of coercive behavior.

Again, broad assumptions are being made here. Does a “risk factor” include being with a domestic partner who tends to instigate conflict, thus raising the possibility of actions deemed to be “domestic violence” if that is what the offending partner chooses to call it once she goes too far and assumes the “passive victim” role? What “strategy” has any chance of working if it doesn’t take into consideration the active role of women in many of these incidents?

The letter goes on with similar hypocrisy, and then this:

We will address these issues fairly and thoughtfully, respecting the rights of all involved and giving proper deference to law enforcement and the courts. If someone is charged with domestic violence or sexual assault, there will be a mandatory evaluation and, where professionally indicated, counseling or other specialized services. Effective immediately, violations of the Personal Conduct Policy regarding assault, battery, domestic violence or sexual assault that involve physical force will be subject to a suspension without pay of six games for a first offense, with consideration given to mitigating factors, as well as a longer suspension when circumstances warrant. Among the circumstances that would merit a more severe penalty would be a prior incident before joining the NFL, or violence involving a weapon, choking, repeated striking, or when the act is committed against a pregnant woman or in the presence of a child. A second offense will result in banishment from the NFL; while an individual may petition for reinstatement after one year, there will be no presumption or assurance that the petition will be granted. These disciplinary standards will apply to all NFL personnel.

Where does “fairly” and “thoughtfully” enter into this draconian policy that ignores the reality of domestic violence? First offense six days without pay? Does this cover everything from speaking “intimidatingly” to domestic partner, which is one of the criteria that advocacy groups claim constitutes “domestic violence”? Does an act of self-defense constitute domestic violence that warrants six games or more without pay? If a player has a particularly abusive, self-involved wife who promises not to engage in actions that possibly lead to a physical confrontation after she causes him to be charged (because that is what police and the courts do, regardless of who the true guilty party is) for the first offense, and continues to do so anyhow, and an incident simply cannot be avoided in the heat of moment, and she refuses to take responsibility for her own actions, then what? Why must the player lose his career because he chose the wrong “life” partner?

I despise hypocrisy, and this is simply another example of it. I have said this time and time again: In most cases, incidents of domestic violence don’t occur in a vacuum, and men are just as often the victim of it. Caving into the hypocrisy of advocacy groups with draconian punishments not only harm men who may be only guilty of defending themselves against an abusive spouse, but continue the vicious cycle of denial that only promises that domestic violence remains an on-going issue. Only when women are held accountable for their own actions will domestic violence become a “solvable” problem.

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