Recently, a video was released by TMZ (who else?), apparently showing an American sports star knocking his female partner unconscious. I’m not going to be specific here – the woman involved doesn’t need any more Google hits to her name and, besides, even if you don’t know who I’m talking about, the situation could easily be a carbon copy of thousands of others, as far as domestic violence is concerned.
As the news broke, social media duly erupted and everyone seemed to be having their say. Reactions were, inevitably, mixed: once again, we were given unnecessary proof that victim-blaming and abuser-apologetics are still many people’s default response to such a story. Fortunately, however, a great many people also showed us a far better way to respond, by expressing sympathy, indignation and basic human kindness. While many of the responses falling into this latter category were a welcome antidote to the bile that was slowly filling the internet, courtesy of those in the former, I can’t help but feel like some of the critics of this sports star and his actions may have missed the mark a little.
This particularly felt the case as I read the White House’s statement on the matter, saying that ‘hitting a woman is not something a real man does’. While there’s a part of me that’s loathed to condemn any criticism of domestic violence, most of me feels that there is something seriously wrong with the President’s message in this case. Read More