Today is history

After years, perhaps even a decade or two, of watching the Today Show, I am changing the channel for good. Yesterday had me so livid, I was in a bad mood all day.

In a segment on the Craigslist Killer, they demonstrated to us how stupid women are. Look, they said, all these women posted ads on Craigslist despite the fact that a killer targeted these women recently. How stupid can you get, ladies?

Umm, gee, instead of looking at how stupid women are for making a living that pays $4,000/week, can we look at the men that choose to use violence towards women, please? Would accountability really be that hard of a pill to swallow?

In one sentence they then lost me as a viewer permanently. They said, they must “save them from themselves” in reference to the women. Oh, now, there’s a classic. Folks, we must save women from themselves! Yes, they are raping, stalking and killing themselves in astounding numbers and we must save them from themselves! (Remind me again what century we’re in?)

That wasn’t their only gaffe, though. A few weeks ago they had a segment on relationships and said women should lower their expectations. Seeing that it came just a short while after the Chris Brown – Rihanna abuse incident, I thought telling women to lower their expectations hinged on the ludicrous.

Then there was the Dr. Laura segment that praised homemakers (and implied what about career women?)  I think stay-,at-home mothers are great too (and greatly underappreciated), however, I really question praising a system that is built on dependency. If abuse is present, that woman will be stuck in her situation (and called “stupid” by those that don’t understand the dynamics of domestic violence). If the man decides to leave, that woman will have to start at ground zero in regard to work and will have lost savings and retirement money. And, moreover, society loses out on the talent that could contribute to its development. So, no, I have nothing against it, but I will not promote it. I simply see it as an option for those (men and women) who choose it for themselves, based on their own circumstances.

Anyway, back to the Today Show. After many happy years together, I’m boycotting it. I’ve got to save myself from further abuse, you know? 

Write to the Today Show at:

TODAY@nbcuni.com

The Wrong Choices

It never ceases to amaze me how society refuses to make batterers accountable for their actions. Instead of asking, why doesn’t she just leave him? shouldn’t we be asking, why doesn’t he stop hitting her? Do we even bother to think that once she leaves him, he’ll find another punching bag? Wouldn’t it be smarter, then, to stop HIS behavior rather than HERS? (Since we never ask, why doesn’t he just leave her, I’m purposely choosing to use these gender pronouns.) 

If our current approach worked, that is, women left their abuser *safely* (because the most dangerous time for a woman is when she leaves), what would all these batterers do with their time? Would they abuse their boss, their bartender, their friends? I don’t think so. What would society do with these men who’ve lost their punching bags? I think they’ll always find women…even if they have to pay for it, so the problem would never go away.  

Instead of asking her to leave (and think she’ s “stupid” if she doesn’t), why don’t we start asking, why does he abuse her and what can we do to prevent or stop his behavior?

Well, that, to me, sounds like the most rational approach, however, the judge in this article, Lexington Mother of 6 gets 5 years for killing husband, believes the woman is to blame for all her wrong choices in life:

There was rarely a day when Sandra G. Lubben’s family saw her without a black eye.

She endured physical and mental abuse from her husband, David Lubben, because she was scared of what would happen if she reported the violence.

The Lexington mother of six was trapped in an abusive relationship from which she could not escape, her defense attorney said Thursday.

But a circuit court judge said Lubben, 40, made poor choices and would have to face consequences for the final decision she made in her marriage.

And finally:

Goodwine said Lubben made some bad choices, the first being to marry David Lubben after he had shown a history of violence toward her.

“I think other choices should have been made that day. If not that day, the day before,” Goodwine said.

So the judge berates this battered woman for the choices she made in marrying this guy and ignores the choices he made of abusing her on an almost daily basis.  I suppose violent men come with a sign on their foreheads, then? The only telltale signs that we know of are jealousy and controlling behavior. These are traits that are easily confused by many people with love, insecurity and inflexibility. Surely, we don’t believe someone we can be attracted to, someone who has a few “flaws,” would be capable of punching, kicking or throwing a woman down the stairs, do we? If we had a glass ball or a sixth sense for sniffing out potentially abusive men, perhaps we would make better choices, but since we don’t come with such super powers, I think we’d better stick to the abusive behavior, shall we?  

Violence is a CHOICE, afterall, that people make, so let’s blame batterers for choicing violence. Batterers are virtually ignored by the justice system (he seems like a charming man, to me), the media (he was a “nice guy” that “snapped”) and society (“she deserved it”). Until we see violence as a choice and women as an easy target, we will continue on our present track: women are blamed for their “choices,” women are punished for “failure to protect” their children, batterers are not held accountable, men’s homicide rate is declining and women’s remains the same or increases. 

Put the blame where it belongs:  on those that CHOOSE violence not on those who are victims to it.