So when is OK to beat someone? Let’s say you’re a man and a woman’s making you miserable. Could you maybe break her nose if she sprays you with a water bottle?
Suppose she calls you names?
What if she’s drunk and abusive?
No. No. No.
How about if she hits you?
No — a thousand times no.
But if you want to know why domestic violence remains the great scourge of our culture, just read the letters submitted to the court on behalf of Zachary Smith and his father, Jerry, who grew so enraged at Zachary’s girlfriend that they took turns beating her. The apartment ended up spattered with blood and she ended up with a concussion and a broken nose.
The father and son escaped jail time — thanks to the intervention of their victim.
The violence the two men directed against the woman in this case is shocking enough. But it’s the letters of support filed by friends and family that really explain why such violence continues, day after day after week after month after year. The federal Centers for Disease Control reports that 30 percent of women will suffer rape, physical violence or stalking by a partner. Domestic violence leads to more than 2,300 deaths annually — 70 percent of them women. Every minute, another 24 attacks occur — 12 million a year.
But several of the letters filed on the defendant’s behalf adopted the malignant, shameful, all-too-common tactic of blaming the victim. In some twisted expression of fear, sexism and anger, women often get blamed for the terrible crimes they suffer.
So let this community make this clear: No man worthy of the title should EVER strike out violently at a woman or a child. We measure the worth of a man by his self control — and by how well he protects those weaker than he. Sometimes, a man may fail this test and disgrace himself. Then he must accept responsibility — something else a real man does.
When is it all right to hit a woman?
And when is it all right to blame the victim?
Never. Never. Never.