Saturday, December 28, 2013

To respond or ignore; dealing with "jokes" about domestic violence.

I discuss the issue of violence against women as part of a mental health unit I teach. I also incorporate lessons on the issue throughout the month of October in an effort to raise awareness of domestic violence.

My students are often shocked to learn how common the problem of domestic violence is. We discuss reasons why violence against women and children is so prevalent in the United States. Part of the reason relates to our society's failure to take the issue seriously. We can easily find examples in the news of perpetrators getting nothing more than a token punishment for violent crimes against women and children.

It isn't just the criminal justice system that doesn't seem to take the issue seriously. We see and hear examples all the time, often on social media sites where domestic violence is treated like a big joke.

The photos I posted below are recent examples I found on Facebook. Some of the comments were appalling. I reported the thread to Facebook. Facebook's response was the thread didn't meet its criteria of offensive or hateful speech. I wonder if they would have reached that same conclusion had the "joke" been about abusing/terrorising/killing an ethnic/racial/religious minority? My guess is the post would have been deleted.

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