I have been planning to write a post about October and Domestic Violence Awareness Month for a couple of weeks, but things just kept getting in the way. Today, I feel like I can no longer wait.
Last night, on Tuesday October 11, 2011 the Topeka, Kansas City Council and mayor repealed the city's domestic abuse law. The repeal was in response to the Shawnee County District Attorney's office recent decision to stop investigating and prosecuting domestic violence misdemeanor cases. Both moves were based on budget cuts.
As both a victim advocate and a woman, this sickens and frightens me. In my opinion the progress we have made in women's rights and in the fight against Violence Against Women in the past 20-30 years has been erased in a single vote.
I can't understand how they could have even have been entertaining such ideas, much less actually go through with it. According to the Kansas Bar Association:
Violent behavior toward others is wrong; it is against the law no matter who does it: a stranger, a neighbor, someone you live with or a family member. Most acts of violence are committed within the family circle. Many acts of abuse are unreported and the victims cover up the injuries they receive.
The fact that this is happening is appalling, but the fact that it is happening during Domestic Violence Awareness Month is sadly ironic. It is apparent that the Topeka Mayor, City Council, and District Attorney are not very aware of the truth of domestic violence in this country. But, are you?
Did you know:
- Domestic Violence can happen to ANYONE.
- Domestic Violence happens in every race, socio-economic class, education level, and age group.
- Domestic Violence victims can be men and women. They can be straight men.
- Domestic Violence occurs in 1 out of 4 relationships. The ratio of DV is the same for straight relationships as LGBT relationships. This means, whether you know it or not, you probably know at least one victim of DV.
- Domestic Violence does not have to be physical. DV takes many forms.
- Domestic Violence may be physical, emotional, sexual, economic and more.
- Domestic Violence survivors are not weak.
- Domestic Violence victims become victims because someone CHOOSES to perpertrate violence against them, not because of anything they did. It is not their fault.
- Domestic violence is not an anger control problem. It is a control problem. Abusers use violence against their victims to control them.
- Domestic Violence does NOT have to happen.
- DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IS A CRIME.
There is so much more to know. If you would like to find out more, you can visit the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence website.
If you are as outraged at the situation in Topeka as I am, please join the Facebook Page: Tell Topeka Kansas Domestic Violence is a Crime and join your voice in with others that support the victims affected by this. Help us tell the victims and advocates in Topeka that they are not alone. The whole country, world even, supports them. We weep for them.
I am but one woman with one voice. Will you help spread the awareness and add your voice to mine by sharing this with your friends and asking them to share?
Editor in Chief Curvalicious Living Magazine
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