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Monday, March 7, 2016

Clarence Thomas and Domestic Disputes

As a family advocate fighting for the rights of people to feel free from violence, I find Clarence Thomas’ argument about misdemeanors and guns ignorant and naive. The reason many domestic disputes are misdemeanor is because for far too long we have viewed violence in the home as a private matter and society hasn’t been willing to give consequences for the outrageous behavior. Men, women and children are maimed and murdered annually after years of severe emotional, financial, sexual and physical abuse. Often convictions are guessing games and the persons with the abusive tendencies walk away with a mere slap on the wrist and then turn around and annihilate their families. Family members being assaulted learn that they have no recourse and must endure the extreme abuse often subjecting their children to a life harsher than a warzone. What most people don’t recognize about family violence including our great leader here is psychopathy is a progressive disorder, which is a grooming process where each assault, whether emotional or otherwise, increasingly worsens—eventually leading to trauma and a spectrum of mental health issues for everyone exposed to the intensity. I have been a proponent of using education and treatment FIRST to assist families in the earlier stages of family violence instead of punishment but the issue is so polarized because everyone’s looking for the bad guy. If we required the entire family to get intervention services maybe people could maintain their rights to bear arms while guaranteeing the safety of others— saving lives and allowing families to live violence-free. Unfortunately, we’re looking for someone to take the rap but we’re missing the mark, as 40% of convicted people at least in my program were actually the ones who got assaulted. We’re judging families through shame for being “stupid” enough to stay yet handing kids over to violent parents for leaving giving the abusive persons access to assault their children and torment the protective parents. We’re unwittingly locking parents and partners into battering relationships for years because we don’t want to take away their rights or subject them to anything, which could tarnish their reputations. If people don’t want to lose their rights to bear arms THEN STOP hurting others. Simple as that! But to accomplish this feat we must reframe how we see violence and help families educate themselves on how to live differently. I have worked with many people with abusive tendencies and they change when they understand they can get their needs met without using violence and people who are abused learn that what they were exposed to wasn’t normal. In order to tackle violence, we must recognize the early warning signs. If you threaten to blow up an airport or shoot a supreme-court justice, it is automatically considered more than a misdemeanor so let’s make our families just as important. Why should the elite be entitled to protection when the vulnerable are ignored?