There is no doubt that the society we live in is a male dominated one. The patriarchy of this world reminds women daily how inferior they are and how much they have to depend on men.
This year has been filled with blatant displays of women being abused and used in the public eye which raises the question, “what is society really trying to say to us about violence against women?” The biggest domestic violence scandal of 2014 could possibly be the Ray Rice situation. The former Baltimore Ravens running back was caught on tape punching his then girlfriend, now wife, Janay and was released from his contract with the Ravens after the video was made public months later. Rice was initially banned from playing football indefinitely only to be reinstated just last week, making him eligible to play for any team in the NFL.
What does this say about the acceptance of domestic violence in our country? That real consequences are only in order when there is hard core proof and said proof runs the risk of threatening the money? And better yet, maybe it says that the illusion of a strict punishment is necessary for a time so that an air of forgiveness can be created in order for things to return to normal?
Even with the beloved Bill Cosby “American’s Dad” having charges of rape and sexual assault brought against him (again), it seems that the fact that women are coming forth for a second (or maybe third time) tells us that it is okay. How long does it take and how many accusations are needed against a man before society as a whole calls these acts for what they are?
The truth is there is never an excuse for a man to exert his authority or strength over a woman in a way that violates, demeans or belittles her. It is going to take the collective members of our society (men and women) to change the way we think about and react to violence against women.