Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Unacknowledged victims

I mentioned this point on Twitter the other night - why do the media and politicians insist on treating the term 'domestic violence' as if it was interchangeable with 'violence against women'? In fact, more than that - as if it was interchangeable with 'violence against women committed by men'? There is a school of thought that women are in fact just as prone to violence within intimate relationships as men are (the level of violence among lesbian couples is sometimes cited as evidence, for instance), but even if this was to be dismissed as a fringe view, surely no-one would seriously deny that women sometimes commit acts of violence against a male partner?

Perhaps a useful analogy would be the military - women are for the most part now fully integrated into the armed forces. In spite of this the vast majority of those who fight and die for their country are still men. And yet the media and politicians would never dare gloss over the courage of the relatively small percentage of women involved - the typical phrase is "our brave men and women". So why treat male domestic violence victims as if they don't exist - or more to the point, as if their suffering doesn't matter enough to be even acknowledged?

1 comment:

  1. It's time men spoke out because if they insist on being 'male' then nothing will improve. The reticence of men where their health and other matters are concerned has to stop.

    Women learned that lesson years ago hence breast cancer etc is now an openly discussed part of life. Come on you men, speak out.