Equality needed for domestic violence victims

Franchesca Walker

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Domestic violence has recently become a hot topic in the media. With stories circulating around professional male athletes attacking women, there has been uproar for affirmative action to drop them from teams, sponsorships and endorsements.

However, there never seems to be a lot of speculation against female aggressors and a call for action against their crimes.

Last summer, Hope Solo, goalkeeper for the United States women’s national soccer team, was accused of domestic violence against her sister and nephew. She currently faces chargers and is awaiting trial.

The story made little noise in the media. Despite accusations against Solo, the team and her sponsor Nike have not dropped her.

There was very little coverage of the story about Solo and it didn’t make headline news oppose to NFL running back Ray Rice.

On the other hand, Rice was arrested for domestic violence against his wife. The running back was suspended after a video of the assault was released.

Many people were openly ready to give their opinions about why Rice deserves to be dropped and a trend on Twitter was created called #WhyIStayed after the video surfaced.

However, when singer Solange Knowles attacked her brother-in-law rapper Jay-Z, social media took another direction with it.

Within hours after the footage of Knowles attacking him in the elevator was released, multiple humorous memes were created and posted on social media sites ridiculing the situation.

In many cases, female attackers are not taken seriously. Domestic violence against men is often overlooked.

According to the Mirriam-Webster dictionary, domestic violence is defined as, “The inflicting of physical injury by one family or household member on another; also: a repeated or habitual pattern of such behavior.”

However, when researching about domestic violence, majority of the statistics are for women only. There are very little statistics for men who are attacked.

In an article about domestic violence against men called “Men, the Overlooked Victims of Domestic Violence,” Ruth S. details why men are silent about being attacked.

“Men are largely silent on the issue because of the perception that men are physically stronger and should be able to subdue a female attacker easily,” Ruth explains. “Those men who do report physical violence are more likely to be ridiculed–both by law enforcement and by the public–than women are.”

According the National Domestic Violence Hotline website, nearly three in 10 women (29 percent) and one in 10 men (10 percent) in the US have experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking by a partner and report a related impact on their functioning.

No matter what gender it is, domestic violence should always be taken seriously. Women should not get an advantage because there are more cases reported against them.

There needs to be more support services and for men. Domestic violence against men should be handled professionally and equally as for women.

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