There is nothing domestic about violence. There is no family in violence. If in fact it was her estranged husband who committed the murder of Diana Gonzalez, their former marriage does not mitigate the violence. We lost a 19 year old student to the jealousy of a 37 year old man. The fact that she entered into holy matrimony with him, ostensibly when he was good to her, does not give him the right to terrorize her or to take her life for any reason.
The phrase “domestic violence” needs to be removed from our vocabulary. It is an erroneous holdover from another time when violence in the home was sanctioned by other men who understood a jealous rage as a rational reason to physically abuse or murder a woman. Physically abusive actions between two people who do not know each other would minimally be charged as assault-why would it be more OK to behave this way toward someone you know?
The justice system’s release of a man who kidnapped and raped a young woman-a young woman who reported the crime and filed for a restraining order indicating her fear of him-is unconscionable. I cannot even imagine the rationale. When kidnapping and rape happen to a man in a war zone, we call it terrorism. This perpetrator’s acts against Diana represent his premeditated, self-serving political motivation. The District Attorney should now charge him with terrorism and premeditated murder and put him away permanently before he does this to the next woman in his life.
My heart and prayers go out to Diana’s family and friends and to her teachers and classmates here at City. It broke my heart to come to campus today knowing that we lost a student who was trying desperately to better her life. I hope that if another young woman from the City College community is trying to get out of an abusive relationship, we will all do what we can to assist her. Be an escort. Call police and ask for an escort so she doesn’t have to ask. Leaving an abusive relationship is the most dangerous time; give her this number (888) 385-4657 where she can ask for help in disappearing from her normal routine.