Today we will be discussing a very serious topic that affects more people than you would expect, domestic violence. So far today police in Australia would have dealt with on average 641 domestic violence matters. Family, domestic and sexual violence is a major national health and welfare issue that can have lifelong impacts for victims and perpetrators. Domestic violence is characterised as “violent or aggressive behaviour within the home, typically involving the violent abuse of a spouse or partner.” (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2019) Domestic violence affects people of all ages and from all backgrounds, but it predominantly affects women and children. Domestic violence is a horrible subject to talk about, but it needs to be discussed in order to put an end to this terrible issue that surrounds society today.
When discussing domestic violence, comments such as Why didn’t she leave? Why did she marry him? She must have done something to provoke him, are made about the victim in question. At the point when video broke of NFL player Ray Rice, hitting and taking out his then-sweetheart Janay, those were the types of questions that erupted on social media. Rather, the inquiry ought to have been, 'For what reason did he hit her?', 'Why didn't he show any feeling or regret?' 'What's going on with him?' This is known as victim blaming, and it is sadly all too prevalent in our society today. These negative comments about the victim are part of what’s wrong with society today. Domestic violence has been a serious issue for many years now and is only getting worse. Statistics are going up and the population is going down. The number of reported incidents in Queensland during 2011-2012 was 58,000. In 2013-2014 that number went up to 66,000. This is not a number we want to be hearing in related to domestic violence. We need to address this serious issue and take a stand against domestic violence perpetrators. The victim is only that, the person in question. They shouldn’t be accused for the actions of another and that should be the focal point of these brutal undertakings.
At the point when the Ray Rice story broke, there was a lot of discussion about what should be done by the NFL to punish him for his actions. He was eventually suspended and cut from his NRL team, the Ravens. Domestic violence abusers aren’t punished enough for their actions in order to teach them a lesson for the treachery they have inflicted onto others. Offenders are only sentenced to 5 years maximum in jail and repeat offenders are only sentenced to three. Domestic violence has lifelong consequences and can scar anyone who has to be put through such torture. A maximum of 5 years isn’t going to teach perpetrators of the pain they have caused and isn't sufficient to show the genuine negative effects domestic violence can have on someone. What's more, if our law requirement and courts don't pay attention to it, in what capacity can any other person? This lack of consistency helps to foster the victim blaming mentality.
The ramifications of domestic violence can be detrimental to victims. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics in a survey conducted in 2016, “2.2 million Australians have experienced physical and/or sexual violence from a partner and 3.6 million Australians have experience emotional abuse from a partner. About 2.2 million Australians have experienced sexual violence since the age of 15” (unknown,2019). These are not numbers we want to see surrounding domestic violence. A teacher at Lake Macquarie High School in NSW claims that if the man is held accountable for abuse/rape then the woman should also be to blame for her choice of clothing. Students at the school claim the same teacher told a class, 'all men have to fight their urges every day not to sexually assault or abuse [women]'. (Lily Mayers, 2019) This kind of mentality is not at all acceptable as it’s putting false information into young students’ heads, making them think domestic abuse is okay. The best response to the topic of how to stop aggressive behaviour at home, is to end the cycles of control and mistreatment in relationships. This should be taught to children from a young age so that they grow up knowing the right thing and not disrespecting their partners, friends, family members, etc. So next time one of your friends or family member is acting different, just check up on them to make sure they are okay as you never know what could be happening behind closed doors.
So why do some men/women think that domestic violence is acceptable at any time? Maybe they were raised thinking it was okay for some crazy reason. The effects of domestic abuse can scar people for life and even take lives in serious cases of domestic violence. This has to be put to an end as people cannot keep living in fear of what could happen to them or their children. Overall domestic violence is a terrible issue to discuss but it must be put to an end immediately.